Hopkins Symphony Orchestra auditions occur every fall and are open to all orchestral musicians including JHU students (undergraduate and graduate), JHU faculty/staff, alumni, and community members with no direct JHU affiliation. Percussion and piano auditions are scheduled separately—those interested should contact [email protected] for information.

2024-25 Auditions & Schedule

Audition Dates & Times

*Subject to change

In-Person Auditions will take place:

  • Thurs, August 29, 2024; 5-10PM
  • Friday, August 30, 2024; 5-10PM
  • Saturday, August 31, 2024; 10AM-6PM
    • Winds 10am-noon
    • Strings 1pm-6pm

Auditions will take place on the JHU Homewood Campus, Shriver Hall.

How to Sign Up

Audition Sign-Up for the 2024-25 Season will open up on August 1, 2024. Audition times are assigned according to the designated slots. Specific requests should be included in the “Audition Time Preference” section of the form and best efforts will be made to accommodate requests. Please contact the HSO office if you miss the deadline of August 27, 2024, if you want to audition on percussion or piano, if the scheduled audition times conflict with a religious observance, or you do not receive audition confirmation: [email protected] or 410-516-6542.

Audition Process & Info

  • Audition slots are 10 minutes.
  • Auditions are unaccompanied.
  • Prepare two contrasting selections of your choice—one fast and one slow. Selections may be two different pieces, or from the same piece.
  • Choose selections that show the range of your abilities but do not exceed them.
  • Auditionees are asked to play a major scale (selected by the audition panel) and given a brief excerpt for sight-reading.
    • For woodwinds/brass: All scales should be performed slur 2, tongue 2; all scales should be performed 2 octaves, up and down, unless otherwise noted.
    • For strings: All scales should be performed slur 2, hooked spiccato 2; all scales should be performed 2 octaves, up and down, unless otherwise noted.
  • Plan to arrive at the audition location at least 20 minutes early, allowing time to register, warm up, and begin on time.
  • Auditionees may have use of a warm-up room.
  • Auditionees are expected to bring their own instrument.
  • Auditions are not behind a screen or anonymous.
  • Bring at least 1 copy of your solo repertoire selections for the panel, photocopies are fine for this purpose.

Deciding Which Orchestra(s) to Audition for

You may audition for the Symphony Orchestra and/or the Concert Orchestra. One audition covers both orchestras. To help you decide, view a comparison of the two orchestras.


You will be informed of the result of your audition by email no later than one week after the audition. For those accepted into either orchestra (Symphonic or Concert), string players will be expected to attend the first rehearsal. Wind assignments are assigned on rotation throughout the season. Cellists in HSO are typically on a rotation, with priority given to JHU students. Musicians not accepted into the orchestras are welcome to audition again next year. Please note that details for the 2022-23 season are subject to change.


  • Hopkins Symphony Orchestra does not take part in the Johns Hopkins University admissions process. Applicants to JHU who wish to submit a music resume and recording should send them directly to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.
  • All non-affiliates/community members must abide by the JHU Volunteer Policy, and must submit to a sex offender registry check prior to being accepted as a community member of the symphony.