AMEB video examinations
> Exam preparation and enrolment
> Accompaniment for video instrumental and vocal exams
> Guide to recording a video performance
> Video exam submission form
Practical examinations by video available till 30 November
All Music Practical Repertoire and Certificate of Performance subjects available for examination by video submission.
New Repertoire exams available in For Leisure, CPM and P Plate Piano subjects by video submission.
All Speech and Drama practical subjects to certificate level available by online video examination.
Note: Video exams will close to enrolment and video submission at midnight on 30 November
The requirements of a video Repertoire exam are the same as the requirements for a face-to-face Repertoire exam. Please refer to the 2020 Manual of Syllabuses for details of examination requirements, including number of pieces and maximum performance times.
‘For Leisure’ teachers and candidates should refer to the examination requirements for Piano for Leisure, Singing for Leisure and Saxophone for Leisure available on the AMEB Victoria website. Read more.
(Repertoire exam requirements for all other instruments are contained in the 2020 Manual of Syllabuses which is available for purchase from AMEB Connect.)
Level 1 (Preliminary – Grade 4)
For Level 1 Repertoire exams (Preliminary to Grade 4), candidates must prepare four works: 3 List works + 1 Own Choice work of similar standard. (Own Choice works may be selected from the published Lists.)
For Level 1 ‘For Leisure’ Repertoire exams (Preliminary to Grade 4), candidates must prepare four works: 2 List works + 2 Own Choice works of similar standard. Click here to read about ‘For Leisure’ Repertoire exams.
Level 2 (Grades 5 – 8)
For Level 2 Repertoire exams (Grades 5 to 8), candidates must prepare five works: 3 List works + 2 Own Choice works of similar standard. (Own Choice works may be selected from the published Lists.)
For Level 2 ‘For Leisure’ Repertoire exams (Grades 5 to 8), candidates must prepare four works: 2 List works + 2 Own Choice works of similar standard. Click here to read about ‘For Leisure’ Repertoire exams.
Exam preparation and enrolment
1. The teacher selects a program of work and sets an ‘examination date’. The ‘examination date’ will be the target date for the recording. This will provide a clear goal for the student to work towards. Of course, the recording date can be deferred, by the teacher, according to circumstances at the time.
2. Prior to the recording date, the teacher, the parent or the candidate if over 18 years, enrols for the examination on AMEB Connect. Enter candidate enrolment details; select Series 60 Video Repertoire Exam; select the syllabus from the list (only available Repertoire subjects will appear); select the Grade; and confirm the enrolment.
To enrol for a Video Repertoire examination on AMEB Connect: 1) select Series 60 Video Examinations; 2) Select the Syllabus and Grade.
Each Video Repertoire exam subject code is prefixed by the letter ‘V’ to indicate an examination via video submission.
3. The enroller will receive a confirmation of enrolment with details of the process for submitting the recording (click here for the guide to recording a Repertoire Exam performance).
4. Complete the recording on any preferred date following the instructions provided. Note that the examination performance must be recorded in one ‘take’: one continuous recording with no editing. A declaration will need to be provided, stating that the performer is the person named on the enrolment and that the examination performance was recorded without any assistance, other than from an accompanist, as required.
5. The exam supervisor will upload the exam performance to the submission form on the AMEB Victoria website and will provide details of the examination performance, including the works performed, and complete the supervisor’s declaration.
6. When completed, click on ‘submit’ to forward the form to AMEB Victoria. The video Repertoire Exam performance will be assessed by a AMEB Specialist Examiner. (The exam will show as awaiting scheduling on AMEB Connect until the video is uploaded and scheduled to an examiner for marking. An email will be sent to the enrolling person when the assessment is complete.)
7. Once the assessment has been made, the report and result will be available on AMEB Connect. The turnaround time will vary from two to four weeks, depending on the volume of examinations. Certificates will be mailed to successful candidates of lower-grade examinations and to successful candidates from Grade 6 and above who have notified us following completion of that the Additional Requirement in theory has been completed.
Accompaniment for video instrumental and vocal examinations
Where a work requires accompaniment, it must be presented with the published accompaniment, otherwise the musical performance will lack coherence and stylistic integrity. It is important that a suitably skilled associate artist is employed, and a suitable accompanying instrument is used, particularly at higher grades.
Providing the candidate complies with the Commonwealth and State Government’s current health directives about gatherings, physical distancing, home confinement and visitors to a household, a live accompaniment is permitted. The accompanist may be part of the same household as the candidate. The supervisor of the examination may also be the accompanist.
In 2020, because of the physical distancing restrictions, pre-recorded accompaniments may be used for Video Repertoire examinations up to Grade 8, where required, subject to certain restrictions.
The use of a recorded accompaniment in an examination is strictly regulated under Australian Copyright Law as licenced by APRA/AMCOS.
(1) Where an official AMEB accompaniment is available, only the official AMEB recording may be used in the examination.
Using official AMEB recorded accompaniments in examinations
When performing in examination with an official AMEB recorded accompaniment on CD candidates must use the tempo provided on the CD. When performing in examination using an app that slows down or speeds up tempo without affecting pitch, the candidate may choose a tempo commensurate with their ability and interpretative judgement in demonstrating the technical, musical and artistic objectives for the level.
(2) Where a commercially recorded accompaniment is not available, a teacher or candidate may engage the services of a professional accompanist to record the accompaniment part, for the sole purpose of rehearsal and examination.
Recordings of both public domain and licensed works must adhere to the following conditions:
- the accompaniment recording must be audio only;
- the recording must not be used in a public performance;
- the recording must not be posted to the internet;
- the recording must not be sold commercially.
Candidates preparing for Level 2 examinations are encouraged to allow their accompanist to hear their performance, prior to recording the accompaniment, so necessary nuances of interpretation can be incorporated into the accompaniment.
If a candidate intends to use a non-AMEB Recorded Accompaniment, the accompanist could be asked to include a couple of tuning notes at the beginning of each piece. If a piece begins with an anacrusis initiated by the candidate or there is no piano introduction, the accompanist should provide a sufficient recorded ‘count-in’.
Engaging an accompanist and negotiating a professional fee is a matter for the candidate and the accompanist, as the examining body AMEB is not able to provide advice on these matters. Lists of accompanists may be found on the following websites:
- Melbourne Conservatorium of Music approved accompanists
- Victorian Music Teachers Association www.vmta.org.au
Guide to recording a performance for a Video Repertoire Exam
Program of work and performance time
The program of work must be chosen with reference to the 2020 Syllabus. The number of works and the duration of the recording must not exceed the maximum performance time listed in the Repertoire Exam section of the 2020 Manual of Syllabuses for the particular instrument and grade.
Camera and microphone
Choose a quiet location with good lighting and minimal ambient noise. It is recommended that the candidate dress as if presenting for a face-to-face exam.
A high-quality recording device should be used; a recent-model smart phone or tablet might be suitable (test both audio and vision). Video resolution of 720p is recommended (minimum 480p). The camera must be positioned to capture the performer’s face, both hands and the instrument. (It is not necessary to show the accompanist in the video recording.) For a piano exam, the whole keyboard and the foot pedals should be captured in the frame, if possible. A suitable height and angle might be achieved by using a tripod or by resting the camera on a table, pile of books or a music stand.
Whilst DSLR cameras may offer high-quality video and can accept external microphones suited to recording musical performances, most DSLR cameras have a maximum recording time of 30 minutes. If the examination performance is greater than 30 minutes, it would be acceptable to end the recording at a suitable point and record the final work/s as a separate video clip. The date and time code should display on both video clips (if possible) and there should be a gap of only one or two minutes between the end of the first clip and the beginning of the second clip.
It is important that the sound is appropriately balanced between the solo part and the live or recorded accompaniment (if any). Candidates for higher grades may wish to consider using an app or device that allows control over the sensitivity and input gain of the microphone to assist in capturing a greater level of expressiveness in the musical performance. Whilst we are not able to recommend particular products, a few possible microphones, apps and cameras that we understand can record high-quality audio are listed below.
External microphones for use with mobile phones (check for compatibility)
- Zoom iQ7
- Shure MV88
- RØDE i-XY
- RØDE VideoMic
Mobile phone video apps that allow manual control of audio
- FV-5 (supported Android devices)
- Filmic Pro (iOS devices and some Android devices)
Dedicated video cameras for recording high quality audio
- Zoom Q4
- Zoom Q2n
If the camera has a function to display the date and time the recording was created it should be activated; if this is not possible, a phone or tablet device displaying the current date and time must be shown to camera at the beginning of the recording. When the candidate (and accompanist, if required) are ready to commence the examination performance, the recording should commence with the candidate introducing themselves, stating the date of recording, the subject and the grade, followed by the title of the first item e.g.: “My name is Jane Smith. Today is the <date> and I am presenting for an examination in <name of subject (instrument)>, Grade X. My first piece is XXXXX.” The presentation should proceed as if it was a performance for an examiner situated in the room at the camera location. Recording should be continuous and there should be minimal gaps between each work. Each subsequent work should also be announced, e.g.: “I will now play XXXX.” The recording should cease immediately after the last work has finished.
A member of AMEB Victoria’s administrative team would be pleased to answer any queries concerning Video Repertoire Exams and may be contacted by email during normal business hours (Monday to Friday from 9am till 5pm). > Contact us
Does the video need to be uploaded to YouTube?
No. As of 24 November 2020 video exam performances are uploaded to AMEB Victoria directly via the submission form on the AMEB Victoria website.
Does the Video Repertoire Exam performance require an accompanist?
If the work is written with accompaniment it must be performed with accompaniment which may be provided by an associate artist or a recording.
I am recording at home, how should I film the exam?
A quite location, with good lighting should be chosen. A candidate for an instrumental or voice exam should face the camera and perform as if the examiner is behind the lens, ensuring that face, hands and instrument are shown. For a piano exam, the whole keyboard and the foot pedals should be shown, if possible.
Does the candidate need to prepare Technical Work?
No. There are no Technical Work requirements for Repertoire exams.
What is the cost for a Video Repertoire Exam?
The cost is the same as the equivalent ‘in-person’ exam.
Will the candidate receive a certificate?
Yes. Once the assessment has been made, the report and result will be available on AMEB Connect and the appropriate certificate will be mailed to each successful candidate. The turnaround time will vary from two to four weeks, depending on the volume of examinations.
What if the recording is not of examinable quality?
If the Examiner finds that the recording is not of acceptable quality the performance cannot be assessed. It will be necessary to submit a new recording for examination and a reschedule fee will be charged to cover the Examiner’s time.
Click here to submit an exam performance.
Click here for Rockschool Video exams.