To apply to the MDT program, you will need to submit an MDT application and three prescreening videos via SlideRoom by the submission date of December 1, 2023. The audition committee will review the prescreening videos, and only the top applicants will be invited via email to attend the live audition the last Saturday in January of the following year.
Please note that candidates will generally not find out whether they have been accepted to BYU until after they have been offered acceptance into the MDT program mid-March.
A studio-produced video for the three prescreening videos is not required. However, please consider the following:
- Have material well prepared and memorized.
- Find appropriate locations for performing vocal selections, dance and monologues.
- Perform your best piece first in each category, one that captures the attention of the adjudicators immediately.
- Dress appropriately for an audition (see below for clarification).
- Submit only the requested audition material (in other words, pleaseDO NOT submit recorded selections from past performances).
AFTER you have uploaded your three videos and submitted your MDT application via SlideRoom, you need to verify that ALL of your application materials have been received by the Music Dance Theatre (MDT) program. To do this, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org. You will receive a reply telling you your application is complete -OR- what items you are missing.
The MDT SlideRoom application will be available for upload approximately 8 weeks before the December 1st deadline (on or before September 15th). You will not be able to apply before September 15th or after December 1st. To access the MDT application, click the link below.
(Live September 15, 2023)
Please note that acceptance into the MDT program is for the following year’s fall semester. For example, if you apply by the deadline in November 2023, you are seeking acceptance for Fall semester 2024. Please visit the Required Videos section below to learn more about the three required prescreening videos.
Toggle ItemMusic VideosMusic Videos
Please prepare two musical theatre excerpts that demonstrate classical/legit musical theatre (golden age) and contemporary mix/belt styles. One selection should be a ballad and one up-tempo. Applicants should choose music well suited to their voice and interpretive capability (your emotional/acting connection is considered carefully in this part of the audition.) Maximum length of BOTH excerpts combined should be 3 minutes or less. Please DO NOT submit performance reels. Upload the video as instructed on SlideRoom.
Toggle ItemDance Videos
ALL candidates will need to learn ALL of Sequence #1. Please note, IF you want to audition as a dancer (a candidate who has received previous dance training and would like to showcase that training), you will need to learn Sequence #1 and Sequence #2.
For Sequence #1, we want to give you a taste of what it is like auditioning for a musical production at Brigham Young University. This sequence is an example of the level and requirements of a typical dance call within the MDT program. It will take you through an artistic phrase as if you are in an audition for a production of Fiddler on the Roof.
Click on the Sequence #1 video provided below to view step-by-step instructions on how to perform this phrase, as well as the demo of the entire sequence required for the dance video submission.
Film yourself performing Sequence #1 to the “Wedding Dance” music from Fiddler on the Roof. An audio file containing the sequence music can be found here (the sequence starts about 50 seconds into the song).
Please make sure that your video shows your entire body from your head to your toes. Wear something akin to what the demonstrators are wearing.Upload the video as instructed on SlideRoom.
IF you want to audition as a dancer to enable you to showcase your previous dance training, film yourself performing Sequence #1 AND Sequence #2 separately. You will then need to combine the two sequences into one video and upload the video as instructed on SlideRoom.
Click on the Sequence #2 Demo video provided below to view the additional dance sequence you will need to include in your dance video submission to apply as a dancer.
Film yourself performing Sequence #2 to the “Rock The Bells” music by Boys Noize. An audio file containing the sequence music can be found here (the sequence starts about 30 seconds into the song).
For step-by-step instruction on how to perform this sequence, click on the Sequence #2 Explanation video below.
Upload Sequence #1 AND Sequence #2 in the same video, not two separate videos, as instructed on SlideRoom.
If you feel neither of these two sequences showcase your talents and skill, you may submit your own dance in addition to the Sequence #1 and #2 combined video described above. Your own submission may not be longer than one minute. This additional video will need to be combined with Sequence #1 and Sequence #2 into ONE video. Upload the video as instructed on SlideRoom.
Toggle ItemTheatre Videos
Two contrasting monologues from established play, musical or film scripts. One selection should be comedic; one should be serious/dramatic. Both selections should allow the student to reveal basic honesty and clarity of objectives. Please adhere to the following guidelines for the theatre monologue submissions:
- CONTEMPORARY MATERIAL ONLY. Absolutely no Shakespeare or material from other “classic/ancient” playwrights. Material should also be from the last 50 years and from published play scripts.
- APPROPRIATE TYPE ONLY. This means material you could reasonably perform in a production at this time given your age range, gender, nationality, etc. No dialect or accent material will be accepted.
- TWO MINUTE MAXIMUM LENGTH. Each monologue must be under two minutes each for a total of no more than four minutes combined for both monologues.
- CONVERSATIONAL, NOT “STORYTELLING” PIECES. Monologues recounting a past experience, or telling someone a story, are not acceptable.Monologues that incorporate a conversation with another person are best. Try looking for actual dialogue scenes and simply cutting out your partner’s lines.
- CLEARLY IDENTIFIABLE PARTNER. We will be looking to see if it seems as if you are actually communicating with another human, although the partner is not seen. This is essential.
- REAL AND NATURAL. Look for colloquial, everyday speech that is not overly bombastic or poetic in nature. Words you might actually use in your own daily conversation are best. Avoid reciting poetry.
- GOOD QUALITY. The quality of your video tape does not need to professional but acceptable. Make sure we can hear you, and the plainer the background, the better. There is no need to include graphics or to hire professionals to make your audition video. We will be evaluating YOU, not the camera work.
- SEE YOU IN THE WORK. Use material that allows us to see your honest emotions appropriate for the imaginary circumstances of the play.
- USE APPROPRIATE SLATE PROTOCOL. There is no need to “set the stage” before your monologues, tell the story of the play, or introduce the characters to us. Simply give us your name and what plays your monologues are from. Also, there is no need to say “scene” at the end of your selections. Simply say “thank you” when you are done.
Toggle ItemCamera PlacementPosition your camera or phone at a level somewhere between eye level and your chin. This ensures a flattering angle and a clear view of your face and upper body.
Toggle ItemSound QualityTest the sound to ensure it captures your raw sound effectively. Avoid using a separate microphone as this may lead to audio quality issues.
Toggle ItemFrame and Eye FocusFor monologues and songs, ensure that approximately ¾ of your body is visible in the frame. Find the right distance from the camera, not to close and not too far away. Maintain your eye focus just to the right or left of the camera lens, rather than directly into the camera or off to the side.
Toggle ItemDance SpaceWhen filming the dance portion of your audition, select a spacious area that allows you to move freely and showcase your full range of movements. (Think of the cultural hall in a church or a studio in your area)
Toggle ItemAttireDress appropriately and professionally. While there’s no need to wear formal attire like ties and dresses, choose clothing that reflects your best self. Neat, clean, and tasteful attire is crucial to making a positive impression.
Toggle ItemMaterial SelectionChoose pieces that highlight your strengths and talents. You don’t necessarily need to showcase your highest notes or angriest monologue. Select pieces that allow you to shine and demonstrate your skills effectively.
Toggle ItemPositive MindsetRemember that the panel reviewing your audition want you to succeed. Approach the audition with confidence and a positive attitude. Believe in your abilities and give it your best effort.
Toggle ItemLastlyDon’t forget to rehearse and practice thoroughly before recording your audition. Familiarity with your material and confidence in your performance will greatly enhance your chances of success. Good Luck with your MDT pre-screen audition!
Toggle ItemWhen is the deadline for the BYU application?Deadlines can vary based on a number of factors. To see the most up to date deadlines for your situation, please visit BYU's Enrollment Services page which will have all the information you'll need.
Toggle ItemDo I have to be accepted into BYU before I can audition for MDT?No, but you do have to be admitted to BYU before the start of the Fall semester following auditions. Acceptance into MDT does not guarantee acceptance into BYU. You must apply to both independently, and be accepted to BYU.
Toggle ItemWhat must individuals auditioning submit for prescreening?MDT application, essay, letter of recommendation, three videos, transcript and completed BYU application submitted to the admissions office.
Toggle ItemWhen is the invited live audition?If you are invited to attend the MDT live auditions, it is the last Saturday in January of that year.
Toggle ItemWhat are judges looking for?Though we can’t give you an all inclusive answer, here’s a few things they do look for in your three audition videos:
Voice – interpretation, quality, suitable selection for vocal ability. Acting – honesty, clarity of objectives. Dance – strength, flexibility, musicality, performance skills.
Overall, the judges are looking at your desire and potential to become a “triple threat” (your ability to develop expertise when you walk into the auditions).
Toggle ItemShould applicants wear costumes?Applicants should not wear costumes, see guidelines below:
Voice: dress nicely. Acting: dress appropriately—no props or costumes. Dance: Your dress should be modest and allow the viewer to clearly see the motion and dynamics of the dance as well as the line and design of the body.
Toggle ItemAre there callbacks following the invited live audition?There are no callbacks following the invited live audition.
Toggle ItemWhen will I find out my live audition results?The final results for the new incoming class involves a highly deliberated process. The MDT Faculty Committee over the MDT program carefully weigh many factors when determining the students with the greatest potential from the pool of candidates. The finalized incoming class is notified in mid-March of the Committee’s decision to attend in fall of that year.
Toggle ItemHow many candidates are accepted each year?Each year approximately 120 students apply to the program and about 10-12% are accepted to fill major slots that are available. We don’t discriminate between men and women as there is no quota with respect to how many women or men can be enrolled in the program.
Toggle ItemCan I audition more than once?Yes, you can. You may audition up to 3 times, or until you have reached the maximum of 60 earned credit hours; whichever comes first. And, in case you’re wondering, we do keep track of the number of times you have auditioned.
Toggle ItemAre there scholarships available?Yes. All students auditioning for the MDT program are automatically considered for a talent award/scholarship. Continuing students (current MDT students) can apply for talent awards each year they are in the program.
Toggle ItemWhat is the Graduation Plan requirement?