Unit of competency details

CUSMPF501A - Prepare a program for performance (Release 2)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to CUAMPF501 - Prepare a program for performanceUpdated to meet Standards for Training Packages. Minor edits to performance criteria. 14/Jan/2016
Supersedes and is equivalent to CUSMPF13A - Plan and prepare a program for performanceUnit has been updated and is equivalent to CUSMPF13A. 28/Oct/2010

Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
2 (this release) 02/Nov/2011
(View details for release 1) 29/Oct/2010


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 100101 Music  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 100101 Music  29/Oct/2010 
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Modification History



Release 2

Created to fix formatting errors only.

Released with CUS09 Music Training Package version 1.2

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to plan and prepare a program for performance. Extensive repertoire knowledge is required, as well as organisational skills to ensure that all arrangements are in place for performances and sufficient time is allocated to practice and rehearsals.

Application of the Unit

Instrumentalists and vocalists apply the skills and knowledge outlined in this unit. They could be responding to a brief from a client for a particular style of performance at an event or they may have responsibility within a company or ensemble for preparing programs.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.


Not applicable

Employability Skills Information

Not applicable

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Plan performance program

1.1 Confirm performance requirements  in consultation with appropriate personnel 

1.2 Apply comprehensive repertoire knowledge to select items that provide a balanced program suited to the purpose  of the performance

1.3 Select items that are appropriate to performers' level of artistic and technical ability and personal style

1.4 Confirm timetable leading up to performance so that sufficient notice is given to colleagues and adequate private practice and rehearsal time is allocated

1.5 Discuss draft program with appropriate personnel, incorporate feedback as required and obtain final sign-off on program for performance

2. Prepare for performances

2.1 Confirm nature and extent of own contribution to the performance

2.2 Obtain required resources in line with allocated budget

2.3 Maintain contact with the venue to ensure mutual understanding of each other's requirements

2.4 Ensure that where required, promotional material communicates the desired impression, and is accurate, current and well-presented

2.5 Make all arrangements in good time and as efficiently as constraints allow

2.6 Isolate technically difficult sections of the music and practise systematically, both privately and in rehearsal, to obtain the required standard prior to performance

2.7 Acquire the required level of familiarity with material prior to performance

3. Develop interpretation

3.1 Analyse the music to understand its scope, possibilities and underlying intention

3.2 Explore a variety of possible interpretations and develop the one most suited to the music and performance context

3.3 Refine and develop interpretation in ensemble, where required, through affinity in rehearsal with other performers

3.4 Listen  critically to own and others' performance and adjust playing to achieve the required sound

3.5 Develop interpretation that is capable of expression within the constraints of own technical ability

3.6 Demonstrate awareness of the performing space and the audience in interpreting and performing the music

3.7 Practise techniques for sustaining expressive communication with an audience

3.8 Seek feedback on own performance from appropriate personnel and adjust practice sessions accordingly

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • communication and teamwork skills sufficient to:
  • interpret music appropriately for performances
  • collaborate effectively with other artists and technical personnel involved in rehearsals and performances
  • discuss program requirements in a collaborative manner
  • listening skills in the context of:
  • listening critically to and adjusting own performance to achieve the required sound
  • recognising intervals, chords, scales and chord progressions in selected area of specialisation
  • responding to other players and adjusting own performance accordingly
  • technical and problem-solving skills sufficient to:
  • use a range of instrumental techniques in selected area of specialisation
  • tune instrument to achieve intonation
  • use a variety of rhythms, time signatures, beat patterns and rhythmic styles relevant to specialisation
  • use a variety of scales, chord sequences and music systems in selected area of specialisation
  • learning skills in the context of:
  • practising strategically to overcome specific technical, expressive or sound-production problems
  • using feedback to identify strengths and weaknesses in technique to improve own technical facility
  • extending repertoire knowledge
  • self-management and planning skills sufficient to:
  • plan performance program and practice time prior to performances
  • allow sufficient time for warm-up prior to performances
  • demonstrate reliability in all agreed work commitments
  • initiative, enterprise and creativity in the context of:
  • phrasing and shaping music appropriately
  • understanding and expressing appropriate musical nuance
  • achieving own individual style of musical expression
  • performing appropriately for the context of venues, sound forces and perceived audience taste

Required knowledge 

  • acoustic principles relevant to selected instrument and area of specialisation
  • music vocabulary and terminology
  • instrument parts, applications, range, capabilities, care and maintenance
  • repertoire relevant to the selected instrument and area of specialisation
  • rehearsal and performance protocols
  • issues and challenges that arise in the context of preparing a program for performance
  • OHS principles relevant to particular performance contexts, such as:
  • legislation
  • policies and best practice
  • hearing protection
  • protection of body against overuse injury
  • safe lifting practices
  • performance anxiety

Evidence Guide

The Evidence Guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the ability to:

  • prepare a program for performance in response to specific requirements
  • achieve the required level of performance skills prior to performance
  • collaborate effectively with others involved in the performance.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • access to relevant instruments and equipment
  • appropriate venue with adequate space and acoustic qualities for solo performances
  • use of culturally appropriate processes, and techniques appropriate to the language and literacy capacity of the candidate and the work being performed.

Method of assessment 

The following assessment methods are appropriate for this unit:

  • discussion of planning a program for performance
  • evaluation of draft and final programs prepared by the candidate
  • written or oral questioning to test knowledge as listed in the required knowledge section of this unit
  • case studies and scenarios as a basis for discussion of methods, strategies and other issues involved in planning and preparing a program for performance.

Guidance information for assessment 

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • CUSMPF401A Rehearse music for group performances
  • CUSMPF502A Incorporate interactive technology into performance
  • CUSMPF506A Develop technical skills and expand repertoire
  • CUSMPF507A Present live audition programs.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Requirements  may include:

  • time
  • venue
  • length of performance
  • content:
  • repertoire
  • contrasts within the program material
  • particular stylistic requirements
  • performance breaks
  • duration requirements for each piece presented
  • number of pieces to be prepared
  • ensemble size
  • resources:
  • instruments
  • instrumental accessories
  • sound equipment
  • microphones
  • sheet music
  • music scores
  • music stands
  • accompaniment
  • movement and dress standards.

Appropriate personnel  may include:

  • musical director
  • producer
  • performer
  • mentor
  • teacher
  • coach
  • tutor
  • conductor
  • agent.

Purpose  of the performance may be for:

  • general public
  • entertainment
  • concert
  • dance
  • corporate purposes
  • cultural purposes
  • marketing and promotion
  • a specific age group
  • educational purposes
  • schools or other institutions
  • special communities
  • special occasions
  • public and/or religious ceremonies
  • auditions
  • audio or video recordings.

Listening  may include:

  • responding creatively and sensitively to other performers in ensemble performance
  • tuning instrument
  • pattern and sequence recognition and memory
  • reproducing sequences from memory
  • distinguishing stylistic features
  • instrumental and vocal sound production
  • aural imagination to develop repertoire and musical material
  • recognising music systems and practices.

Unit Sector(s)

Performing arts - music performance