Review these guidelines to get the most of your experience.

All-County Guidelines

Overview

NYSSMA Manual Edition XXXII (32) (effective July 2018) must be used for ECMEA Solo Auditions

FEES
AUDITIONS and STUDENT ALL-COUNTY REGISTRATION FEES have been prepaid with the schools District Participation Fee.

ALL CONCERT TICKETS – $6.00/seat

Participation Policy For ECMEA All-County Auditions & Festivals
ECMEA has an established contract with its respective member districts, and therefore, each district’s music teachers, regarding school participation.

The following guidelines delineate the responsibilities of the music educator who wishes to engage in festival participation:

  1. A student’s school must have paid the district participation fee for the current year.
  2. A student applicant must be a member in good standing of his/her corresponding instrumental/choral school performing ensemble at the time of the audition and at the time of the applicant’s membership in the All-County ensemble. Home educated students not meeting this requirement are ineligible to audition for an All-County ensemble. Specifically:
    • A choral applicant must be a member of his/her school chorus.
    • A wind, percussion or string applicant must be a member of his/her school band or orchestra.
  3. Each audition registration may only be submitted by the student’s school music director. This will qualify the student for the solo/group audition and possible selection to an All-County ensemble. Registration of elementary vocal students may only be submitted by the student’s school vocal director to qualify the student for possible selection to an All-County ensemble. Registrations of instrumental students may only be submitted by the student’s school instrumental director. Submitting a student for audition and possible selection to an All-County ensemble is exclusive to member schools, and not available to private teacher-members. Students of private music teachers, or home educated students must submit solo applications through the student’s appropriate public, private, or parochial school which has paid the annual School Participation Fee. Appropriate school is defined as the school that the student attends or the school district in which the student resides.
  4. Each teacher submitting student names for All-County Festivals must do so at SoloChair.com by the deadline. Teachers do not need to mail a copy of their confirmation/invoice form to the Festival Office. No late registrations or substitutions permitted.
  5. DEADLINES are FINAL. ECMEA publishes all deadlines and sends a deadline reminder to teachers, and recommends that each teacher submit their student names early to avoid any difficulty accessing the internet.

Conflicts/Misfiling/Resolution Process
Non-compliance to the established protocol compromises not only the contractual relationships, but also the integrity of the festivals/evaluations. Compromises could have legal ramifications, not only to the individual music teachers, but to the organization as well. Furthermore, it is clearly the ethical/professional responsibility of the music educator to follow the established protocol and not compromise or penalize the students due to actions of the professional.

In the case of non-compliance to ECMEA Participation Policy, the following protocol will be followed:
A – Formal Response –
The Festival Administrator, Executive Director and/or designee will notify the affected teacher of the non-compliance matter in writing as soon as possible. The respective building principal associated with the non-compliance will be notified in writing of the matter under review. The building principal may elect to notify the Superintendent of Schools of the matter under review within 36 hours. The respective building or district administrator may forward a “Letter of Education” related to the issue of non-compliance to the cited teacher.

B – Resolution/Appeal Protocol –
If there is a need to resolve a non-compliance matter presented by a: Music Teacher, Parent, Student, ECMEA Festival Administrator, Executive Director and Board, or Other, then the initial elements of the appeal process reside with the Festival Administrator, followed by a review/decision from the ECMEA President and, when necessary, the Administrative Advisor(s) for the final source of resolve.

Application Deadlines

  • Elementary Choral Preliminary Application: October 15
  • Elementary Choral Names: November 15
  • Junior High Choral Auditions: November 15
  • Senior High Choral Quartets: November 15
  • All Instrumental Solos: November 15
  • Jazz Solos: November 15
  • Scholarships: November 15
  • Senior High Vocal Quartet Name Submission: January 15

Festival Guidelines

Choral Guidelines

ELEMENTARY CHORAL:
Students are selected to an elementary all-county chorus by teacher recommendation.

Elementary (grades 5-6) Preliminary Applications must be completed at SoloChair.com between September 15th and the October 15th deadline. The choral preliminary application asks for actual chorus registration by grade as well as the number of musically competent students by voice part that are worthy of recommendation.

After October 15th, Elementary Choral Teachers will receive their Blue or Red Chorus designation and their all-county registration allotment by voice part. Registration will then be open at SoloChair.com for individual student names until the November 15th deadline. Print out a confirmation/invoice form and retain for your records.

All ELEMENTARY cancellations and substitutions are made through the Choral Coordinator, Ann Mosner (from the list of registered students only) by the February 15th Elementary substitution deadline. No substitution can be made after the deadline. Names of substitutions made after Feb 1st will not appear in the concert program and will be announced from the stage.

JUNIOR HIGH CHORAL:
Students are selected to junior high all-county chorus by live vocal audition at the designated date and site for that festival. Teachers are to register student names and voice parts at SoloChair.com by the November 15th deadline. Students will be asked to choose between being selected for all county chorus or band/orchestra on the Vocal Audition Form on the day of the festival. Print out a confirmation/invoice form and retain for your records. The audition schedule will be emailed to teachers.

Please report cancellations to the Choral Coordinator, Ann Mosner right up to the Festival Weekend. Reporting cancellations prior to February 1 will help insure program accuracy. Since all students recommended for the JH Chorus at the auditions are selected, there are NO ALTERNATES.

Teachers must register students for auditions for SSA & SATB choruses by name and voice part on SoloChair.com by the November 15 deadline.

Audition materials and procedures are as follows: Students of the same voice part will receive an audition time, and will sing for an adjudicator in groups of 2-3. The audition will consist of 1) singing ascending and descending major scales on numbers, solfege syllables, or a neutral syllable; and 2) demonstrating both independent and ensemble singing ability by singing a designated round. Each of these singing tasks will first be sung in unison by all of the singers, then sung as first, second (and additional) entrances. Both parts of the audition will be sung unaccompanied; music to the round will be available for the students’ reference at the audition. Updated sample materials and audition videos can be found at the ‘Junior High Auditions’ link. This page can be accessed by the public – your students can download the music and view the videos for their own use. The round will emailed to the vocal teachers of he county at the beginning of the school year as well as available on the website. There will be specified scales and keys by voice part.

Students auditioning for both choral and instrumental ensembles will be asked to choose between being selected for all-county chorus or band/orchestra on the audition form.

Teachers should submit only the names of those students whom they feel are qualified to participate in an auditioned All-County ensemble, and to represent their school and music program.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the audition process, please feel free to contact the Choral Committee Chairs Gary Lee (glee@ecmea.org) or Ann Mosner (amosner@ecmea.org)

SENIOR HIGH CHORAL:
Students are selected to senior high all-county chorus by live vocal quartet audition at the designated date and site for that festival. Teachers are to register the number of vocal quartet audition slots needed at SoloChair.com by the November 15th deadline and enter student names at SoloChair.com between the January 2nd and the January 15th deadline. Only students registered by the January 15th deadline are eligible to audition. Audition schedule will be emailed to teachers. Teachers may not exceed the number of quartets which were requested by the November 15th deadline.  Schools without singers to fill a quartet must secure missing voice parts with a colleague.  This must be done PRIOR to the audition festival.  Print out a confirmation/invoice form and retain for your records. Students will be asked to choose between being selected for all-county chorus or band/orchestra on both the audition and sight reading forms. All quartet students will be assigned a specific sight-reading audition room by voice part. All cancellations will be made through the Choral Coordinator, Ann Mosner, and can be reported right up until the both the audition and Concert the Festival weekends. Reporting cancellations before February 1st will ensure program accuracy.

Instrumental Guidelines

NYSSMA Manual Edition XXXII (32) (effective July 2018) must be used for ECMEA Solo Auditions
All-County Scoring
Each woodwind, brass, string, and percussion student who auditions at our January audition festivals earns a score based on a 100-point system. A weighted score, determined by the solo level, is used for selection to an all-county ensemble.

Limits on Solo Levels
All string, brass, woodwind, and percussion solo auditions must be within the NYSSMA levels listed below for each student’s grade in school.

Grade in School NYSSMA Solo Levels
Elementary 4-6 1-4
Junior High 7-9 1-5
Senior High 10-12 1-6
Seating Auditions
After selection to an All-County group, each student will receive the concert music which is to be prepared before the first rehearsal. At the first rehearsal, sectionals and/or seating auditions may be held.

Rules

  • Instrumental students are selected to an all-county band or orchestra by attaining a score at a live audition at the designated date and site for that festival only.
  • All student instrumental auditions must be registered on SoloChair.com by November 15. No late registrations permitted. Registrations must be complete. All solo information – title, composer, level, manual page (1-11 format) must be entered.
  • A student is limited to performing an audition on an instrument listed in the drop down menu on the SoloChair.com festival registration page. Instruments not appearing in the drop down menu may not register for an audition.
    The audition solo must be chosen from the current NYSSMA Manual Edition XXXI (32) effective July 2018
  • A second published edition of the solo (judge’s copy) is required by ECMEA for a student to be considered for selection into an all-county ensemble. If a student performs without a second published edition of the solo, he/she will only receive a rating and will not be eligible for selection into an all-county ensemble.  Students with illegally copied music (not published editions) will not be allowed to perform.
  • Students registered for an all county audition must play on the instrument for which they are registered.
  • Teachers, parents, and students are not allowed to switch students between audition rooms.
  • All instruments (including strings & mallet percussion) will play only 1 octave scales.
  • A student who is registered as “not auditioning for all-county ensemble” may not change their status to “auditioning for all-county ensemble” after that student has performed his/her audition.
  • Auditions are 10 minutes in length except Junior and Senior High percussion auditions which are 15 minutes long. Adjudicators may choose to hear excerpts of long solos.
  • Observers are allowed to hear only the scale and solo sections of the audition, and are not allowed to interrupt or speak during the audition. Failure to observe this rule will disqualify the auditioning student.
  • Audio or video recording of any part of the audition is not allowed. Failure to observe this rule will disqualify the auditioning student.
  • When an adjudicator has his/her private student scheduled in his audition room, every attempt will be made to switch the private student into another audition room of the same instrument. This reassignment is at the discretion of the Festival Administrator or adjudicator, and not of the parent or student.

Students are selected to an all-county band and orchestra based on a weighted score according to the following table.
Level 6 deduct 0 points
Level 5 deduct 3 points
Level 4 deduct 7 points
Level 3 deduct 10 points
Level 2 deduct 14 points
Level 1 deduct 17 points

Percussion Guidelines

ECMEA’s Solo Audition goal is to select students for honor ensembles. These audition requirements put more weight on the solo and sight reading, and less weight on rudiments, scale variations, tuning and roll requirements. The Basic Proficiency category now equals 5 points, making this rubric similar to other instruments. 5 points were added to the Technique scoring making it 20 points. This scoring matches the Woodwind, Brass and String rubric for Technique.

Snare Drum:
The snare drum rudiments and long roll requirement will follow the scoring system of: 5 points (3 rudiments : 1 point each; long roll: 2 points)

Mallet Percussion:
Scales – One octave only: no arpeggio, no harmonic octave roll, and no playing in thirds will be required. Level 1 & 2: any 3 major scales; Level 3 & 4: any 7 major scales; Level 5 & 6 all major scales.

Timpani:
2 intervals tuned with 2 drums (one note on each drum), and long roll. The interval requirement by level is the same as indicated in the Timpani section of the NYSSMA Manual Edition XXXII (pg. 6-9).

The long roll will be performed without regard to tuning and will be performed on the drum(s) already used in the tuning requirement.

This reduced requirement will simplify the complexity of the timpani audition, and will also help keep the audition within the scheduled time.

Levels 1-4 Single stroke roll- on one drum: will be performed on the large (28” or 29”) drum. Begin the roll piano, gradually crescendo to forte, maintain this level for approximately 10 seconds, gradually decrescendo to piano.

Levels 5-6 Single stroke roll- on two drums: the student will roll on the lower note of the interval and then repeat the procedure on the higher note. Begin the roll piano, gradually crescendo to forte, maintain this level for approximately 10 seconds, gradually decrescendo to piano. The roll must be performed on each drum.

There will not be any element requiring glissando tuning or tuning for the single stroke roll.

Snare Drum: The snare drum rudiments and long roll requirement
will follow the following scoring system:
5 points (3 rudiments : 1 point each, and long roll: 2 points)
5 points: All three rudiments and long roll correct.
4 points: Two rudiments and long roll correct, or three rudiments
correct and long roll performed with some problems.
3 points: One rudiment and long roll correct, or two rudiments correct
and long roll performed with some problems.
2 points: Zero rudiments correct but long roll correct.
1 point: Zero rudiments correct and long roll performed with some
problems.
Mallet Percussion: The Mallet scale requirement will utilize the
following scoring system that is consistent with non-percussion
instruments.
One octave only: no arpeggio, harmonic octave roll, or playing in
thirds.
Scale requirement: Level 1&2 – any three scales; level 3&4 – any 7
scales.
5 points: All three scales correct
4 points: Two scales correct
2 points: One scales correct
0 points: Zero scales correct

Jazz Guidelines
Eligibility

Instrumental students are selected to an all-county jazz ensemble by attaining a score at a live audition at the designated date and site for that festival. Students in grades 7-12 are eligible to perform a jazz solo audition.

Students may audition on more than one instrument but must make their preference known at the audition. Students may audition on the following instruments: Alto Sax, Tenor Sax, Bari Sax, Trumpet, Trombone, Bass Trombone, Percussion – Drum Set, Percussion – Mallets, String Bass, Electric Bass, Guitar, and Piano.

Selection

Two high school level bands and one junior high level band will be selected. The Jazz 1 & 2 Bands will be selected from students in grades 10-12 and the Jazz 3 Band will selected from students in grades 7-9.

Alternates

Alternates for the Jazz 1 Band are chosen from the Jazz 2 Band. Alternates for the Jazz 2 Band are chosen from the HS Jazz alternate list. Alternates for the Jazz 3 Band are chosen from the JH Jazz alternate list.

Audition Date

Jazz auditions take place at the Elementary Solo Festival.

Audition Format

Solos must be chosen from the NYSSMA Manual Edition 32 (XXXII) (Effective July 2018). Students in grades 7-9 are limited to a level 5 NYSSMA jazz solo.

Percussion instrument auditions are 15 minutes. All other instruments are 10 minutes – following NYSSMA guidelines.

Trumpet players will be asked to play a scale of their choice demonstrating their range from low to high. This scale will not be graded but will be a consideration in determining the lead trumpet assignment.

Jazz Sight Reading is required. See NYSSMA Jazz Sight Reading Criteria in the NYSSMA Manual.

Students are required to improvise blues in the keys of concert Bb or F using the ECMEA Jazz Tracks available under Jazz Practice Audio. It is recommended, but not required, that students play a “head” before improvising. Disk and CD player will be provided.

A second published edition of the solo is required by ECMEA for a student to be considered for selection into an all-county ensemble. If a student performs without a second published edition of the solo, he/she will only receive a rating, and will not be eligible for selection into an all-county ensemble. Students with copied music (not a published edition) will not be allowed to perform.

Jazz Practice Audio

Jazz Tracks in Bb & F are available to on our Jazz Practice page for students & teachers to practice from for Jazz auditions.