How to Apply

Thank you for your interest in NEC. We are fortunate to have many of the world's best young musicians apply here each year, and we hope you are one of them!

Due to the ongoing global pandemic, NEC will be adapting our application and admissions procedures for the Spring 2021 and Fall 2021 application periods. We hope that these changes will allow everyone to have a safe and successful application experience.


Please be sure to read all of the application instructions thoroughly, and note that some of the significant changes include:

  • Applicants for most majors will submit a recorded video audition (or portfolio for Composition, Theory, and Musicology applicants) as described in our Audition Requirements. There will not be live auditions on NEC's campus. Prescreening will only be required of applicants in Violin, Viola, and Cello. Applicants to the Artist Diploma, Doctor of Musical Arts, and Harvard/NEC dual degree programs may be asked to connect in February for a follow-up live-stream interview and audition, but all other applicants will be evaluated musically based on the recorded audition (or portfolio).
  • To allow applicants the necessary time to submit a recorded audition, the application deadline for most majors for Fall 2021 will be January 8, 2021. Applicants in Violin, Viola, Cello, and Voice must submit by a December 1, 2020 deadline.
  • We understand that it may be challenging to make arrangements for rehearsal/recording spaces, pianists, and other collaborative musicians. Please let us know if you have any questions regarding your situation; we will be happy to work with you to find a solution.

Applications for Spring (January) admission are accepted on a space-available basis. Students interested in January entry should contact us about anticipated openings before submitting an application.

Please see detailed information for:

Undergraduate Applicants

Graduate Applicants

Request Information


Contact Us

We are currently working remotely due to health concerns. Please do not call our offices. We can be reached by email at the addresses below. We strongly encourage you to directly contact the staff member for your intended major/instrument:

Brass, Woodwinds, Percussion
Emily Cox, Assistant Director of Admissions and Financial Aid 

Jazz, Contemporary Improvisation
Shanell Percy, Admissions and Financial Aid Counselor

Piano, Collaborative Piano, Piano Chamber Music, Piano Trio Program,
Composition, Theory, Musicology

Claire Paik, Assistant Director of Admissions and Financial Aid

Strings, Conducting, String Quartet Program
Zach Schwartz, Assistant Director of Admissions and Financial Aid

Vocal Performance, Vocal Pedagogy, Opera
Kimberly Ouellette, Admissions and Financial Aid Counselor 

General Inquiries

Alex Powell, Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid 

Lauren Urbanek, Associate Dean for Financial Aid 


NEC Community Video

NEC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, or veteran status in the administration of its educational policies, admission policies, employment policies, scholarship and loan programs, or other Conservatory-sponsored activities.