2024 Sewanee Ensemble Placement and Piano Auditions:
Ensemble placement and piano auditions for new Sewanee students are held Monday–Tuesday, August 26–27. See below for descriptions of the groups, contact info, and any directions for the auditions/placements themselves. Email the contact person with any questions and for an audition slot. If possible, they will schedule around any academic advising appointment you may have.

University choir

Come join one of the biggest student organizations on the University campus. The University Choir sings all Sunday Eucharist services at All Saints' Chapel as well as monthly Choral Evensong services. Membership consists of some 60 undergraduate students. This choir leads the music for Lessons and Carols, which draws over 3,000 students, staff and alums back to Sewanee in early December!

In your vocal placement encounter, be prepared to sing exercises to determine your range and voice part. 

For an audition time or to ask any questions, contact: Geoffrey Ward (ghward@sewanee.edu).

Sewanee Symphony Orchestra

The Sewanee Symphony Orchestra is a vibrant reflection of our community. While most of the orchestra is made up of undergraduate and graduate students, you might also find the chair of the Biology department in the flute section or the chair of Econ on bassoon. The SSO also welcomes talented community members. Along with performing, students in the Artistic Leadership Program (ALP) direct aspects of production, marketing, promotion, and library organization.

For an audition time or to ask any questions, contact: Mario Torres (matorres@sewanee.edu).

University Jazz Ensemble

The Jazz Ensemble performs all types of jazz literature from early swing, contemporary fusion, to original compositions. The group consists of saxophones, trumpets, trombones, guitar, bass, drum set, percussion (including mallets), and keys. Much of the music is read, but improvisation is also available to musicians wishing to stretch themselves. Most solos are written out, but there is the option for a player to improvise over the chord changes if desired.
For the audition you will be asked to play major and minor scales (2 octaves) and sight read a jazz excerpt. Pianists and guitarists will also sight read a chord progression (for comping).

For an audition time or to ask any questions, contact: Nate Felty (nrfeltydrums@gmail.com).

Sewanee Praise

The University Gospel Choir, which performs under the name "Sewanee Praise," offers gospel music on the Sewanee campus. We sing spirituals, traditional and contemporary gospel, praise and worship, and contemporary Christian.
For the vocal placement prepare one song of your choice. Please bring a recording of it with you or the accompaniment for it. Demonstrate the ability to match pitch and be able to sing your vocal part against other parts of the choir. 

For an audition time or to ask any questions, contact: Prakash Wright (pcwright@sewanee.edu).

A Cappella Group: Cambiata

Cambiata is a co-ed, mixed voices contemporary a cappella group. We usually number about 15 in the group, with sopranos, altos, tenors, basses, and vocal percussionists. Our style tends to be a healthy mixture of recent radio hits and nostalgic throwbacks. We work hard and have a lot of fun together to put on the best show possible. 

For the vocal placement, prepare about 30 seconds of any song that makes you sound good, whether it be Broadway, opera, pop, or classic rock. There won't be accompaniment, so be ready to sing solo. Also, we would like to know if and how well you read music, if and how well you can beatbox, and your comfortable vocal range. We're in a rebuilding year, so an officer position is open.

For an audition time or to ask any questions, contact: Kourtni Hamilton (she/her) (hamilkd0@sewanee.edu).


Piano is not an ensemble—but pianists do contribute to the Jazz Ensemble, Sewanee Symphony Orchestra, and Sewanee Praise, as well as accompanying instrumentalists and vocalists and sometimes serving as teaching assistants. Auditions for these positions, as well as scholarships for the piano lessons taught by Dr. Bernadette Lo (classical) and Kash Wright (jazz comping and improv), will be held at the same time as the ensembles. Information on playing the carillon and lessons with Rev. Dr. Ray Gotko is also available.

For an audition time or to ask any questions, contact: Stephen Ray Miller (smiller@sewanee.edu).