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Doctor of Musical Arts in Woodwinds

Major code: D735

Prof. Rod Ackmann
  • Bassoon, Area Chair
Dr. Jonathan Nichol
  • Saxophone, Interim Director
Alexis Seah
  • Interim Saxophone Instructor, Coordinator of Graduate Auditions
Dr. Suzanne Tirk
  • Clarinet
Dr. Valerie Watts
  • Flute
Prof. Shawn Welk
  • Oboe


Application Deadline

Applications for admission in Fall must be received by December 1.



There is no separate application for assistantship. Unless the applicant indicates otherwise, we assume that all applicants are interested in being considered for assistantships. Please note that assistantships are usually awarded for the Fall and Spring semesters together. We very seldom have assistantships available for anyone entering in a Spring semester. We do not award assistantships for Summer sessions.


Application Procedure

1. Applicants are encouraged to reach out to the appropriate faculty in advance, to discuss their proposed audition repertoire. Pre-screening of applicants by the appropriate faculty may take place. Students will need to begin the online application process (see the Graduate Admissions page) and potentially submit the prescreening materials described below. Applicants will be contacted by woodwind faculty with the results of prescreening. The rest of the application materials should not be submitted until prescreening results have been received.

2. After an applicant passes a potential prescreening round, they will need to submit all remaining application materials described below by January 1.

Note: applicants to graduate woodwind programs do not need to provide the following item that is requested on the online application:

List of specific coursework or pre-requisite coursework that is applicable to this graduate program and has prepared you for graduate study.

3. Schedule an audition by contacting the Coordinator of Graduate Woodwind Auditions, Alexis Seah ( More details about the audition can be found at the bottom of this page.


Prescreening Application Materials

If the appropriate faculty member asks you to submit pre-screening materials, the following items must be submitted to the online graduate application system

  • Repertoire list of significant solo and chamber repertoire
  • Performance videos or audio recordings of at least 30 minutes of music. See the audition requirements at the bottom of the page for repertoire guidelines.
    • Audio or video files or links to online recordings may be submitted to the online application under Digital Portfolio > Upload Media.


Application materials required for all graduate degrees

These items must be submitted to the online graduate application system.

  • Resume
  • Personal Statement
    • Submitted to the online application under the Statement of Purpose tab
    • What aspects of the program attract you to OU? Additionally, please answer one of the following prompts:
      • Why do you want to pursue this degree?
      • How would you describe your professional path to this point and your aspirations going forward?
      • What skills, expertise and experience do you bring to the degree, and how will you use your degree, post-graduation?
      • What is important to you musically, artistically, pedagogically, and intellectually?
  • Three letters of reference
    • Submitted to the online application under Recommendations tab
    • Your three reference letters should include:
      • At least one letter from: your studio professor, ensemble conductor, chamber coach, etc., or a person who has considerable knowledge about your abilities as a performer or composer.
      • At least one letter from: a person who can speak to your abilities as a scholar of music.


Scholarly writing requirement

This degree requires you to submit a sample of your scholarly writing.

  • Submitted to the online application under the Supporting Documents tab
  • Preferably not more than 3 years old.
  • Should be recently revised.
  • Should be a minimum of 5 pages of double-spaced text, not counting bibliography.
  • Should represent your best writing and researching skills.
  • Should present a complete argument supporting a clear thesis.
  • Should feature a consistent method for citations and should contain a bibliography.
  • Please contact the Graduate Music Office ( or the area chair for your program with any questions about meeting these requirements.


Audition Dates

Most DMA auditions will take place on the following dates. See the following section for more details.


Graduate Woodwind Audition Dates
January 27, 2023
February 4, 2023
February 25, 2023


Audition Details

After you have passed a potential prescreen round and submitted all remaining application materials, you will coordinate an audition by contacting the Coordinator of Graduate Woodwind Auditions, Alexis Seah (

The Woodwind area will offer both in-person and virtual DMA auditions, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Virtual auditions will take place via pre-recorded, unedited live take YouTube video submission and subsequent Zoom audition/interview. Applicants who are auditioning virtually should submit a link to their video recording no later than 24 hours prior to their scheduled audition, to At that point, details and credentials to a Zoom audition/interview will be forwarded to the candidate.

Audition Requirements

  • Applicants to the DMA in any woodwind instrument should prepare approximately 30 minutes of music.
  • The pieces recorded may be submitted in multiple videos.
  • The repertoire should consist of music appropriate for graduate level study and may include orchestral excerpts and/or jazz.
  • The audition should represent a broad breadth of styles/periods and, if appropriate, use of different instruments. The woodwind faculty encourages applicants to include music of underrepresented composers, if possible.
  • The audition does not require accompaniment or memorization.