Diploma With Honors Including Honor’s Jury Information

­­­Diploma with Honors

All of our performance diplomas may be awarded with honors; only the Pre-Collegiate Diploma in Theory may be awarded with honors. A diploma with honors is an accolade reserved for those who have achieved the highest level of musical artistry and proven themselves to be fine scholars. Many of our diploma students are truly excellent performers, far above their peers both academically and musically. The honors diploma recognizes the very highest level of achievement within this already select group.

Honors Requirements in Instrument/Voice:

To receive the diploma with honors in an instrument/voice, a student must have satisfied (or be registered for) all of the course, ensemble and lesson requirements for that diploma, plus:

  • Successfully performed a level 6 jury by the end of the 2nd semester of the student’s junior year.
  • Be recommended for Honors by his/her primary teacher.
  • Perform an Honors Jury and receive a passing grade.
  • An interdepartmental faculty jury will determine pass/fail of each Honors Jury.
  • Students who pass their Honors Jury are required to perform a solo Honors Recital (minimum 30-minute performance), near the end of the graduation year.

Honors Requirements in Theory:

Only students who successfully complete the Pre-Collegiate Diploma in Theory are eligible for honors. To receive the Pre-Collegiate Diploma in Theory with Honors, a student must have satisfied all of the course, ensemble, recital and lesson requirements for that diploma. In addition, the student must:

  • Receive the grade of A in all theory courses pertaining to the Pre-Collegiate Diploma in Theory.
  • Receive a “5” on the AP Theory exam.
  • Successfully complete the Honors Theory Project.
  • Be recommended for honors by his/her Honors Theory Project instructor.
  • Receive a vote of approval by an interdepartmental faculty jury attending a lecture-recital (30 minutes) based on the student’s Honors Theory Project.
  • Present the same lecture-recital in front of an audience near the end of the student’s graduation year.

Honors Jury Information

Honors Jury Checklist

Honors Jury Checklist for Theory

You can find this year’s Honors Jury Date on the Special Events Calendar

Basic Policies:
  • All students who are studying with collegiate faculty must do so through ECMS to be eligible for the Honors Jury or Scholarships, Eastman recitals, ECMS pre-collegiate diplomas, etc.
  • Students must be recommended for Honors by his/her primary teacher.
  • Students considering taking an Honors Jury should complete the Honors Check List with their teacher and return it to the ECMS director by early-December.
  • For the sake of fairness, there will be only one Honors Jury per year. It will occur the first or second Saturday in January.
  • Orchestral excerpts are not accepted.
  • Jazz candidates can be accompanied by up to an additional trio.
  • The Honors Jury is not a competition. It is a means to measure the artistic achievement of each student. All students may pass, some students may pass or no students may pass.
  • Only the candidate, the accompanist, and a page-turner (if absolutely necessary) are allowed on stage. It has been recommended to the candidate that neither the accompanist nor the page-turner be the candidate’s teacher.
  • Faculty members who have students performing may attend the jury, but may not vote for any of the students.
  • The jury members will be the same for classical honors as it is for jazz honors. Both classical and jazz faculty will listen to all honors candidates.
  • Candidates are to be judged according to this performance, and not on the basis of potential or other performances.
  • No audio or video recordings are permitted and no parents allowed into the hall.
  • Students and their teachers will receive jury comments as with regular juries.
The Program:
  • Honors candidates must have their 20-minute programs approved by their department chairperson. Programs should be submitted to the department chair for approval by November 15 so as to be able to change pieces prior to the jury, if required. Pieces which are too long and which will have “cuts” to shorten them, must also be approved by the chair.
  • The program must be stylistically and technically balanced and varied (approved by the dept. Chair).
  • While the jury would prefer to hear pieces/movements in their entirety, for long pieces, the student and teacher may want to shorten a particular piece. A “false” cadence can be planned within the piece (the program should indicate “excerpt – beginning to letter E” for example). The department chair should approve these cuts as well. Please submit original timings and an approximation of timing with cuts.
  • The Department Chair will submit the final program to the ECMS office 10-days before the jury.
The Performance:
  • The Honors Jury is a 20-minute, formal recital. The jurors will not stop the candidate during the performance. If the program goes over 20 minutes (which is perfectly fine), the school director will cut off the performance in order to keep the jury on schedule.
  • Programs must be performed in the order printed on the program. 
  • Judges may disqualify any student who does not meet memorization requirements: Voice and piano applicants must memorize all music; WBP must memorize at least 5 minutes of the 20 minute performance; Jazz applicants must have at least half of the performance memorized; String applicants must memorize all concertos and unaccompanied pieces. Exceptions will be made for any chamber music performance.
  • Music should be performed as written – if the piece has piano accompaniment, it should be played with piano.
  • The jazz honors jury will consist only of jazz music (all 20 minutes).

Performance Criteria

Do you think this student be accepted to a major conservatory like ESM based on this performance? Is there a genuine talent in this student? Was the performance moving musically? Was there attention to detail, energy and character? Has the candidate reached the technical and performance level to convey his/her musical ideas clearly? Could an audience listen comfortably and with enjoyment to a 45-minute performance by this student?

Decision process

The judges will vote at the end of the jury. This will be a blind ballot with no discussion. A two-thirds majority is needed to pass.

  • When 7 Jurors are present, there must be 5 yes’s to pass.
  • When 8 Jurors are present, there must be 5 yes’s to pass.
  • When 9 Jurors are present, there must be 6 yes’s to pass.
  • When 10 Jurors are present, there must be 7 yes’s to pass.
  • When 11 Jurors are present, there must be 7 yes’s to pass.
  • When 12 Jurors are present, there must be 8 yes’s to pass.
  • When 13 Jurors are present, there must be 9 yes’s to pass.

Last updated: January 19, 2015