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Auditions 2019-2020

Auditions for the 2019-2020 School Year
All auditioning students (incoming freshmen and returning students) must complete the online audition registration (coming soon) OR bring a completed printed copy of the downloadable audition registration form to their audition. Showing up without completing the online form or providing the printed copy will not make a good impression! The information collected will be used to create our jazz program rosters when placements are decided, so it is important that everything is correct and readable. Thank you!

Please read the additional audition instructions found below.  Everyone will perform this year’s selected tune, “It Could Happen to You,” written by Jimmy Van Heusen with lyrics by Johnny Burke. The required sheet music for this tune is posted here on this webpage or can be found in the band hall at Mountlake Terrace High School. You must use these versions!

There is also some general information about the jazz program at Mountlake Terrace down at the very bottom of this page.

Audition FAQs (check this after reading all the way through. If you still have questions, email me

Instructions for Auditioning for Jazz Bands
Note for incoming 9th graders who play sax and brass: The main entrances of the school will likely be locked on your audition day. Please enter the school via the ramp by the loading dock in front of the school. This will lead you into the band room. 
The following information is tentative and subject to change. Please check back here regularly.

Sat. June 8, 10am

Incoming 9th graders, brass

Sat. June 8, 12pm

Incoming 9th graders, saxophones

Sat. June 8, 2pm

Returning Terrace students, brass

Sat. June 9, 4pm

Returning Terrace students, saxophones

Sun June 9, 2pm

ALL rhythm section players (piano, vibes, guitar, bass, drums)

Audition music and requirements are detailed below. Students may also be asked to sight-read. Students audition in front of their peers as well as the band director, and sessions typically last several hours. Rhythm players audition by playing in small combos with other auditioning rhythm students.

  1. Required piece: “It Could Happen to You, ” written by Jimmy Van Heusen with lyrics by Johnny Burke. Note that the required version is in the key of E flat! You can download the required piece here (links listed below for each version) or you can get a printed copy in the hall outside the Mountlake Terrace Band Room. It is important that you use the correct version, in the correct key, for your instrument. 
    It Could Happen To You (for Bb instruments)
    It Could Happen To You (for Eb instruments)
    It Could Happen To You (for Bass clef instruments)
    It Could Happen To You (Concert C)

  2. Prepared piece. Play an excerpt, standard, or transcription of your choosing, not more than one minute long. Choose something that demonstrates your strengths as a player. It should also contrast in style and/or tempo with “It Could Happen To You.” If you’re playing an exercise from a jazz instruction book, be sure you know what tune it is based upon. You may plug in your phone if you have a back-up track.

  3. You will be asked to play scales or arpeggios to demonstrate your range, knowledge, and tone. We’re looking for strong players with a big warm sound and command of your instrument.

  4. Be sure to arrive early for the audition to check in. There may be paperwork to complete. Much of this can be done in advance by completing the online audition registration OR completing a copy of the downloadable audition registration form and bringing it with you. 

  5. Participation in Jazz Ensemble 1 requires the signing of a contract to make sure certain behaviors and expectations are met. Please bring this contract with you to your audition if you wish to play in Jazz Ensemble 1. Jazz 1 Contract

We look forward to hearing each of you for Mountlake Terrace Jazz Auditions!

General Information
Wondering what to expect for a typical Mountlake Terrace Jazz student and family?
Read more about it in our Jazz Program Overview (coming soon).
Even with three jazz bands, not everyone will be placed in a Terrace Jazz group. These are special opportunities for those who are truly interested in performing jazz music. You don’t have to be a super-star; just a motivated young musician who really wants to swing!
Participation in summer jazz camps in addition to private lessons is highly recommended.
Information about summer jazz camps and workshops can be found here.
I am tremendously excited about what is happening with JAZZ at Mountlake Terrace and look forward to hearing many young musicians at auditions!
Darin Faul