Performance Application FAQs
The performance application system is now closed for 2016. The information below pertains to the 2016 application process. 2017 dates will be announced in the early fall.
What is the deadline for performance applications?
2016 performance applications were due, via the online performance application system, by 5:00p.m.(CST) on Monday, March 14, 2016.
What is needed by this deadline?
The 2016 performance application can be found on this website, by clicking on the 2016 Performance Application.
Your complete application must be submitted to The Midwest Clinic by 5:00 p.m. (CST) on Monday, March 14, 2016. Applications received by the deadline, but without all the required items, will not be considered. Please do not call The Midwest Clinic office requesting an extension for any item. Please schedule your photo and recording sessions well in advance of the deadline and submit your materials as early as possible to avoid any last-minute delay.
The Midwest Clinic requires that performing groups who appear at the conference wait four years from the year AFTER they performed before they may apply again. For example, groups that performed in 2012 or later would be ineligible to submit a performance application in 2016.
Do ensembles that have applied before have a higher chance of being selected than ensembles that are applying for the first time? The number of times an ensemble has applied is not a factor in the decision. What does matters is the quality of the application.
Some of the questions on the application do not apply to my group. Is there another application I should be using? All performing organizations should use the same performance application form. If there are questions that do not apply to your group, indicate that they are not applicable by typing N/A in those spaces.
Which application form should I use if I would like to bring a chamber ensemble to The Midwest Clinic? You should use the performance application if you would like to play a concert at Midwest. Please use the clinic application if you would like to present a clinic session that combines instruction with chamber music performance.
Is the choice of literature (grade level) on the audition recording important, and does it make any difference if the recording is weighted toward transcriptions, contemporary or older, more established and well-known repertoire?
Orchestra: One selection should be a slow tempo piece or movement and one should be fast. Standard literature is preferred, though good quality arrangements or transcriptions are acceptable.
Band: Traditional accepted quality standard repertoire would be preferred. It is probable that a more difficult selection, whether new or old, that is played well, would tip the scales in comparison to a less difficult selection played equally well.
Jazz: Jazz applicants are welcome to submit recordings reflecting various jazz styles using either published charts or manuscripts.
The recordings of your ensemble is the single most important part of your application. You, therefore, will want to select music that best reflects your players' capabilities.
What kind of March should I include on my band's audition recording? Your band should perform a traditional military style march by one of the composers listed on the approved march list.
Why is a traditional military style march required on the band audition recording? The performance of a traditional “military style march” demonstrates to the band selection committee much about the ensemble. It exhibits a clear understanding by the director and individual musicians of the character, phrasing, dynamic contrast, articulation style, pitch control and transparency of musical lines often overlooked or under rehearsed by many bands. Additionally, the standard march is an important aspect of our band heritage and we want to ensure this form of musical expression is not lost to future generations of directors and ensemble members. The traditional “military style march” requirement is of equal importance to the other selection you include on your recording, and the same care should be given to each.
Is a video recording required and must it be the same music that appears on the audio recording? Yes, a video recording of your ensemble playing or rehearsing the "same music" that is on the audio recording is required. It does not need to be the same performance that was recorded on the audio recording.
Who should write my recommendations? If possible, you should ask directors who are most familiar with your work and can write on behalf of your ensemble's record over an extended period of time. The committee is interested in learning if there has been a consistently high quality program over the years and if the director has a reputation as a musician and a builder of music programs. Adjudicators at festivals are suitable as well, but may not be aware of a tradition of quality, which may exist in your organization. The Midwest Clinic board members are ineligible to submit evaluations.
Should recommendation forms be included with my application or sent separately? Recommendation forms must be sent electronically to The Midwest Clinic office by the person who is making the recommendation. The final section contained within the online performance application system requires that you identify three individuals to whom you would like to send an evaluation form. Evaluations will be sent via email to each individual only AFTER the submission of your completed application, and therefore cannot be done in advance. The system will automatically generate a code for each individual, which they will in turn enter (via the link provided) to access the evaluation page. Following their assessment they will electronically return the form to The Midwest Clinic. The deadline for evaluations is Friday, March 18, 2016, 5:00pm (CST).
How should I prepare my application?
PLEASE BE SURE TO TEST YOUR AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDINGS TO MAKE SURE THEY PLAY WITHOUT INCIDENT.
THE AUDIO RECORDING SHOULD BE OF THE HIGHEST AUDIO FIDELITY.
a. Audio and Video recordings MUST be recorded after September 1, 2015.
b. Your administrator must certify that the selections on these recordings are unedited.
c. Each selection and/or movement must be a separately uploaded track and should be itemized on the video recording.
d. Your ensemble must not be identified within the sounds recorded on the audio itself, such as in an announcer's introduction or a director's voice (This does not apply to the video portion). Any ensemble that is identified on the audio recording will be disqualified.
e. ONLY the following audio formats will be accepted by the performance application system: .aiff, .wav, .mp3, .mp4, .m4a, and .wma. We recommend .aiff or .wav file formats due to their superior fidelity over .mp3.
f. ONLY the following video formats will be accepted by the performance application system: .mp4, .wmv, .mov, and .avi.
g. The performance application system will only accept UP TO 30 minutes of audio and video files (separately) so please prepare your submissions accordingly.
How will The Midwest Clinic notify groups whether or not they have been accepted? All applicants will be notified sometime around the beginning of April. Results will not be shared over the phone.
When will The Midwest Clinic announce which groups have been invited? When all of the invited groups have confirmed that they are accepting the invitation to perform, The Midwest Clinic will post the roster of performers on the website. We hope to announce the list of performers by the beginning of May.
How have others reacted to their invitations to appear at The Midwest Clinic?
Some of our former performing directors shared reactions to their invitation to perform at Midwest.
"The Orange County School of the Arts Frederick Fennell Wind Ensemble is VERY excited to be performing at the Clinic in December. We are especially honored to have received this historic invitation as the first band from Southern California (2nd ever from the entire state, I've been told, too!) in the Clinic's distinguished 68-year history!"
Click Here to view a video of the announcement to Orange County School of the Arts Frederick Fennell Wind Ensemble.
Teren Shaffer, Orange County School of the Arts
"We are excited and filled with joy to have this amazing opportunity."
Click Here to view a video of the announcement to Nipher Middle School Orchestra.
Fariga Etoza Drayton, Nipher Middle School Orchestra
"It is with great humility and tremendous excitement that I accept, on behalf of the Vista Ridge Wind Ensemble, the invitation to perform at the 2014 Midwest Clinic. I look forward to an opportunity to personally express my gratitude to you, the Board, and if appropriate, the panel of evaluators, for the wonderful experience that I know this will be for my students, my staff, and me.""
Bryan Christian, Vista Ridge High School
"We are honored, humbled and grateful for the invitation to perform at the Midwest Clinic next December! Many, many thanks for this once in a lifetime news. I simply cannot wait to share the students from Reading Junior High School with you next December."
Kevin Cranston, Antoinette Reading Junior High Band
"We are looking forward to the opportunity to get to know and work with your staff and continue the tradition of great performances at the Midwest Clinic. I am deeply aware of what an incredible honor this is and cannot begin to describe my personal and the entire KHS Orchestra, School and Community's excitement."
Chris Reidlinger & Elisabeth Hale, Kingwood High School Orchestra
"We have received enthusiastic support from our administration for this endeavor, and the student performers are positively brimming with pride and anticipation. Thank you for this honor – we are looking forward to an amazing journey!"
Ginger Wolfe, Clements HS Orchestra & Daniel Galloway, Clements HS Band