Application Requirements

M.F.A. and Certificate in Drama

There are many people who assume they are not ready to apply to Yale. The Sound Design faculty encourage applications to the Sound Design program, and venture to say “Don’t be afraid to apply!” Please email to schedule a preliminary phone interview. An honest assessment of an individual’s readiness to apply for admission is provided. At the conclusion of a successful preliminary phone interview, an on-site interview is scheduled between January 5 and March 1.

Earlier on-site visits or interviews can be arranged on an as needed basis. Alternate arrangements, including internet video conferencing, can be made for international applicants, or for applicants who are unable to travel during the personal interview period. NOTE: A site visit is extremely valuable.

David Budries (Chair) with Michael Costagliola ('19), Yale School of Drama, 2017. Photo by Joan Marcus.
David Budries (Chair) with Michael Costagliola ('19), Yale School of Drama, 2017. Photo by Joan Marcus.

The on-site interview generally consists of an introductory meeting; a tour of the facilities; introductions to faculty, students, and staff; the portfolio review; a listening evaluation; an opportunity to see a play in rehearsal or performance; opportunities to sit in on classes; and a summary discussion. A two-day visit is recommended, but the process can be truncated to accommodate an applicant’s schedule.

An applicant is urged to submit their application as early as possible. No application is considered after February 15. The applicant provide a resumé, a statement of purpose, an official undergraduate transcript, three letters of recommendation, and a photograph (non-professional acceptable) that is used only to relate the applicant’s application to the portfolio. Professional associates, mentors, professors/teachers, or persons who can provide relevant character references may submit letters of recommendation. General references may be considered, but professional references are preferred. At the formal interview the applicant should be prepared to present their portfolio even though it was submitted digitally. No media is returned that is left after an interview.

Applicants to the Sound Design program submit their applications electronically. The portfolio should include any material that defines the applicant’s creative process. It can include excerpts from productions, projects, sound art, broadcasts, recording projects or any creative venture that honestly expresses what the applicant can do. Portfolio submissions may include any or all of the following: audio and video files, drafting, still images, text files, music notation (compositions/arrangements), spreadsheets and database reports from recent design work in dramatic theater, musical theater, performance art, radio, video or mixed media. For each production or project submitted, applicants should provide a written description of the work that provides some performance context to help the admissions committee understand the manner in which the work was designed/executed. Applicants submitting a reinforcement design for a musical should include any or all of the following documentation: full line drawings of the reinforcement system, a detailed equipment list, a microphone plot for the orchestra (or band), a radio frequency (RF) microphone schedule, cue sheets, photographs or other supporting paperwork or research. In general, presenting a comprehensive view of a complete production process (large or small) is of most value when evaluating an applicant. Showing range of experience is also important. Contact David Budries; 203.432.8825) with any questions.

Applicants to Sound Design submit file format portfolios electronically through the online application. The portfolio submission interface allows applicants to label each file with a title, a date of completion, the materials used, and a brief description of the work. Digital files must adhere strictly to the specification outlined below.

Applicants may upload a total of 30 media files (in acceptable formats) that represent the work in three portfolio projects/productions/examples. Any balance or mix of media files is acceptable. Additionally, applicants may upload up to three digital media files that may not be a part of the three primary portfolio projects. A significant number of the files should represent work done with the last twelve–eighteen months.

To conform to the viewing format, each still image file may be no larger than 16 MB.  Applicants should not format images in any presentation program (e.g., PowerPoint, Keynote), or include composite images (more than one work per file). Still image files may be sent in jpeg, png, bmp, or tiff format. File format for videos and moving images (videos) are accepted in QuickTime, AVI, FLV, MP4, or WMV format. Video files should be no longer than five minutes in length, and the size of video uploads is limited to 265 MB. Do not include titles or credits within the video files.