There is no time limit in Elementarstufe (Elementary Grade) exam and Stufe 1-8 (Grade 1-8) exam. The total duration of repertoire for Oberstufe (Performance Level) examinations are shown below.
The total duration of repertoire refers to the total duration of all the pieces performed, and does not include:
· announcement made by Exam Supervisor/examiner before and at the end of the exam
· exposition repeats (e.g. full exposition of a sonata form movement) and introductions of accompanist alone of more than 1 minute
· breaks or pauses between pieces
Edition of Pieces
Candidates may use any alternative published edition of the pieces provided that they are not simplified version.
Candidates should observe da capo and dal segno indications. Other repeats could be played at the candidate’s choice. Longer repeats (e.g. full exposition of a sonata form movement) should not be played.
Except Elementarstufe (Elementary Grade) exam, candidates taking exams of orchestral instruments are required to play with accompanist, unless the chosen piece was originally composed for unaccompanied performance.
Candidates taking piano and classical guitar exams are not required to play with accompanist unless candidates choose to play concerto where orchestral reduction must be played by a second piano.
Prerecorded accompaniments are strictly prohibited. All pieces requiring accompaniment must be performed with acoustic piano.
Shorten Introduction (piano acc.)
Piano accompaniment should not be shortened in Stufe 1-8 (Grade 1-8) exams. For Oberstufe (Performance Level) exams, pianist may carefully shorten them in a musically appropriate way (Pianist should maintain musical aesthetic qualities, avoid changing to totally unrelated chord, and keep the integrity of rhythmical sense) if the piece consisted accompaniment introduction or outro considered to be too long. Playing the entire orchestral ritornello for a concerto first movement by the accompanist would be unnecessary.
Pauses Between Pieces
Candidates may tune their instruments, clean their instruments, clear their throat, regulate their mood, or even drink a sip of water after playing each piece during the exam.
Performing from Memory
Though it is not mandatory, candidates should perform from memory if they wish to achieve better results, especially in Performance Level exams. A memorized score frees the candidate from the mental distraction of reading, and allows all the cognitive, physical, and emotional processes to merge and focus solely on the art of making music, which may contribute to a better performance that has control, discipline, and a broad and sweeping sense of freedom. Remember that VMEB Music Exam is a “performance-focused” music examination.
There are no age limits. Candidates may enter for any grade irrespective of age. The age of a candidate shall not be taken into account by examiners.
There are no prerequisites for all the exams. Candidates may enter any grade without having previously taken any other exams.
It is the responsibility of candidates to ensure that instrument is available for examination and they are properly tuned. (Exam centres may not have the type of instrument available for your exam). Please make suitable arrangements with exam centre in advance if your instrument takes time to set up.
On the Day of Exam
On the day of the exam, candidates must bring their Exam Notification Letter and identity document bearing with candidates’ photo to the examination venue for verification of identity.
Candidates must also bring their own instrument (unless pre-arrangement has been made with exam centre).
Before the exam starts, candidates must provide a list of works to Exam Supervisor to fill in the Exam Statement.
If exam is taken at Vienna, it will be supervised and examined by examiner directly.
If exam is taken at exam centres in overseas (i.e., not in Vienna), the whole examination will be recorded by video. The Exam Supervisor in charge will read a beginning announcement before the start of the examination and an ending announcement before turning off the recording device. Exam Supervisor will not give marks and comments on the examination. The exam video will be forwarded by the respective exam centre to the Board for examiners’ evaluation and assessment.