TIPS FOR FINE AND PERFORMING ARTS MAJORS
• Look out for any Performing and Visual Arts College Fairs. The National Association for College Admission Counseling sponsors these during the fall in many large cities.
• Determine if the program is offered as a major, minor or extracurricular activity.
• What degrees are offered? (BA, BFA, BM, etc.) Course requirements are different and students should understand that at a BFA or BM is typically more concentrated than a BA.
• If students are interested in the business side of fine arts, be sure that the college offers courses or program related to this.
• If a school has a graduate program in fine and performing arts, find out if undergraduates have opportunities to be cast in productions, perform solos and have access to studio time.
• Is teacher education available? Check on teacher certification programs.
• Find out about double majors. Is this encouraged? Can you graduate in four years
• Animation programs that are connected with art departments are usually best.
• Programs in video game design are also offered at technical schools, not-for-profit institutions as well as two and four year colleges. Determine which option is best given your academic background and career goals.
• Utilize fine and performing teachers at NCHS. They are knowledgeable about what colleges have good programs and can be helpful in looking at the “fit” for particular students.
• The more passionate a student is about pursuing their passion, the better chance that they will persist and graduate. Many of the skills/talents in the arts are applicable in other fields.
• Check on each college’s web site to find the specific requirements for applying as a fine or performing arts major or minor.
• Look to see if an audition, portfolio or specific application supplement is required
• NCHS’ fine arts, drama and music teachers have a wealth of knowledge and are always happy to help
• Check each college’s web site to find out whether this is required, recommended, and where and how this should be submitted
• Begin planning this portfolio during your junior year. Seek the assistance of one of our art faculty.
• Check on the specific requirements for the portfolio, how many pieces of work, in what form ( e.g. slides, CD, CD in jpeg format, web site)
• Many local colleges have portfolio review days, especially in the early fall of senior year. Use this opportunity to have your portfolio reviewed by the experts at the college level
• Check each college’s web site for specific audition requirements
• Some colleges require that auditions take place at the institution; some have audition days in several cities around the US.
• Be sure to set up your audition time EARLY in the application process if possible
• Do pay attention to your personal appearance and deportment. Show you are well prepared and have done your homework about the program and the college.
• Dress appropriately e.g. for dance auditions invest in some dancewear that shows your body in motion
• Do bring in sheet music and speak clearly to the accompanist. Most schools do not need you to bring your mother or friend to accompany you.
• Do select a piece to showcase your talents. Avoid pieces that attempt to shock or with inappropriate language.
• Do avoid current hits from Broadway, songs associated with particular artists and overly familiar material
• Select material suitable for young performers and beware of choices that are difficult to perform under stressful conditions.
• Do not outstay your welcome and answer any questions in a straight-forward manner that expresses your individuality.
• BE YOURSELF