Teachers & Groups



Guitar Teachers

We are ready to work with you to help you prepare your students to play with the Denver Guitar Orchestra. We will support your students with another opportunity to play with an ensemble. Please contact us to discuss how we can help you with your curriculum and how we can help you prepare your students for our entrance exams.

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DGO’s take on Guitar Foundation of America Standards

  1. DGO is built on a “classical” guitar foundation and includes varied musical styles within our curriculum.
  2. DGO recommends nylon string guitars when playing classical repertoire, and encourages the use of most acoustic guitars.
  3. DGO recommends sitting in an ergonomic position that promotes good posture and easy access to the guitar for both left and right hands. A footstool or other device may be used to position the guitar in the most efficient position.
  4. DGO encourages the use both hands in a manner that prevents injury in part by avoiding extreme extension and/or flexion of the wrist.
  5. DGO teaches playing with attention to minimal tension.  Students should learn to play without using unnecessary muscles to perform a task.
  6. All sheet music is prepared with traditional staff notation, along with tablature and chord charts.
  7. We are working to have our well-sequenced curriculum aligned to the standards published by the Colorado Department of Education to ensure it fulfills national standards.
  8. We learn repertoire from various musical periods and genres.  Modern and historic performance practice are be addressed.
  9. We’re seeking opportunities to participate in local, state, regional, and national music festivals (district competitions, state competitions, festivals, conventions, etc.).
  10. We have a library of solo and ensemble guitar music.
  11. We have access to high quality instruments, replacement strings and tools for necessary repairs.
  12. We are seeking to participate in outreach performances.
  13. We use proper right-hand finger-style technique for repertoire composed for this technique.

Denver School of the Arts Audition List

  1. Students will perform one piece of music in the style of their choice
  2. Students will play a variety of jazz chords and related scales of their choice (see audition preparation page)
  3. Students will sight read one piece of music
  4. Students will complete a brief music reading test that will include major and minor key signatures, intervals, and triads
  5. Students should submit at least one letter of recommendation
  6. Students must be able to read music in order to be considered for the guitar major program at Denver School of the Arts.


CU Denver’s Audition Info

All audition-based guitar applicants must prepare a video audition for pre-screening.

The video must include the following:

Perform two musical selections:

  • A jazz, “Chord and Melody” type of arrangement for solo guitar.
  • A single melodic line guitar solo based on a transcription of a jazz – fusion – pop or classical piece.
  • A solo classical piece including any repertoire from Bach, Sor, Carcassi, Brouwer or any other comparable selection.
  • A fingerstyle piece using alternate tuning or standard tuning like Michael Hedges or Leo Kottke compositions.


Demonstrate the following chord types in root-6 and root-5 positions: Maj7, 7, min7, min7(b5) and dim7, min6, 13, 9 and min9

Scales and arpeggios:

  • Two octave major scales in three different positions – pick any key
  • Seven Greek modes (one position per mode) – pick any key
  • Two octave, seventh chord arpeggios including: ­Major seventh, seventh, minor seventh, minor seventh flat five and diminished seventh – pick any root note

Metro State Audition Info

Classical Guitar
  1. At least two prepared pieces:
  2. A study of Sor, Guiliani, Carcassi, Aguado, Sagreras, or Brouwer
  3. A piece from the Renaissance, Baroque, Romantic, or Modern periods
  4. One major scale OR melodic minor scale with classical fingering, using i,m alternation from Segovia scales, 3 octaves
  5. Sight reading in positions I-V
Please note:
  • Jazz/rock fingerings are NOT acceptable.
  • You MUST audition with a classical guitar
  • Original compositions and improvising are NOT allowed.
  • You must use a guitar support, such as a footstool
  • You may NOT use tablature and must read music, not “by ear
  • You must have a discussion/email exchange with Alex Komodore (komodore@msudenver.edu) prior to auditioning.
  • In most cases, you will need to have studied privately with a CLASSICAL GUITAR teacher known to the MSU Denver Guitar faculty
  • If you cannot read classical music or play with proper technique/position, and wish to get better at it so that you can audition correctly, at the minimum you should take MSU Denver’s two Class Guitar classes and THEN study privately to get more competitive.
Jazz Guitar
  1. Your sight reading ability must be the equivalent level of Studies 1-3 from Melodic Rhythms by William Leavitt.
  3. You must know basic chord voicings for maj7, 7, min7, min7b5 and dim; with the root of the chord on strings 4,5, and 6, in all keys
  4. You must be able to comp the above chords in a jazz style (i.e. Freddie Green, Charleston, etc.)
  5. Prepare a 12-barblues: you must be able to play the melody, comp the chord changes, and improvise over the chords.
The song should be from this list:
  • C Jam Blues –Duke Ellington
  • Blue Monk –Thelonius Monk
  • Straight, No Chaser– Thelonius Monk
  • Sonnymoon For Two –Sonny Rollins
  • Tenor Madness –Sonny Rollins
  • Billie’s Bounce– Charlie Parker
  • Now’s The Time –Charlie Parker
  • Looking up the tune on YouTube does not constitute research. Find/buy a recording of the song by the original artist, or by an
  • important jazz guitarist: Wes Montgomery, Kenny Burrell, Barney Kessel, Jim Hall, Joe Pass, Tal Farlow, Grant Green, Pat Martino, et al.