MSA Applications

MSA Admissions

As a community within Novato High School, we are both proud Hornets (NHS mascot) and proud Servals (MSA mascot.) In the MSA community, we value creativity, passion, hard-work, and diversity. Our MSA admission process reflects our desire to continually develop our MSA identity as talented and committed artist scholars that represent the best of the Bay.

Admission to Marin School of the Arts at Novato High School is through an application and audition review process. Students are accepted both from within the Novato Unified School District and all areas of Marin, Sonoma and surrounding counties.

Prospective students and their parents are invited to participate in activities that help families understand the breadth and depth of our program offerings including MSA Family Tours and Student Shadow Days. These activities are offered before beginning the application process (see information below). Admission to MSA is based on the criteria described on the Audition and Portfolio Guidelines page.  No preference is given to where an incoming student lives.

At this time, we are unable to accept new applications for the 2020-2021 school year. If you will be attending NHS next year, we may be able to consider new applications in August. Scroll down to preview the application process and check back in August to access the application link.  

Programs accepting applications:

Cinematic Arts  *  Digital Arts & Animation  *  Instrumental Music – Jazz or Classical only  *  Photography  *  Theatre/Musical Theatre  *  Video Game Design  *  Vocal Music

Because Marin School of the Arts is a specialized program within Novato High School for students who are passionate about the arts and may wish to pursue college-level arts training we require students to maintain a 2.0 or higher grade point average and good attendance and citizenship. These qualities will be verified after auditions and before communicating an official offer.

We welcome the opportunity to get to know all interested applicants and look forward to either seeing you at a Family Tour or reviewing your application!

The Application Process

Acceptance to the Marin School of the Arts is based primarily on the student’s audition and review of the student’s application by the program faculty. We are looking for students who are passionate about their art form—it is not necessary for applicants to have previous professional training.

Once ALL required application forms have been submitted (see instructions below), applicant families will be contacted to schedule audition(s).


1. MSA applications are still open – many of our programs are able to consider applications submitted past the Jan. 8 application deadline. Please complete your application ASAP if interested.

STEP ONE: Clicking the MSA Student Information Form, which will be available in August. You may select up to three programs and click submit once complete.

You will then receive an email with links to the MSA Program Applications page, which must be submitted prior to scheduling an audition.

2. APPLICATION DATE:  Wednesday, January 8, 2020.

3. AUDITIONS & PORTFOLIO INTERVIEWS: February 1-2, 2020, with the exception of Theatre Arts, which will hold auditions on January 18-19. Late auditions/interviews will be handled on a case by case basis.

Please contact the MSA Office  for more information.  You may also visit the Audition and Portfolio Guidelines page for more information about each program’s audition process.

4. REQUIRED SCHOOL RECORDS: In order to complete your application, please send copies of the applicant’s unofficial school transcript, attendance and discipline records to the MSA Office. You may use the Records Request by Parent form (click form title to download) to request your student’s records from your school. Please send your student’s records which to the MSA Office via mail to 625 Arthur St., Novato, CA 94947, attn: MSA Applications.

5. FINAL AUDITION DATE: Sunday, February 3, 2020



For additional information or questions contact:  Marin School of the Arts, 625 Arthur, Novato, CA 94947.
 Phone: (415) 798-5063 or email:

MSA Family Tour Days

MSA offers Family Tour Days to give prospective students and their parents or guardian a chance to experience all that MSA has to offer. Tours begin in the Performing Arts Center with a brief overview with MSA and NHS administrators followed by a tour of MSA classes in session. Reservations are required to attend a Family Tour Day.

Given COVID-19 safety restrictions, we are reformatting our MSA Tour Experience. Please check back in August for details, dates, and sign-ups. It is not necessary to tour MSA in order to apply.

MSA will offer a Spring Tour for prospective 7th grade students, tentatively scheduled for April 30. More information will be posted soon.

MSA Student Shadow Days

Prospective students who would like a more in-depth experience in their MSA program of interest may request a Student Shadow Day after attending an MSA Family Tour. Parents will receive an email following their tour to set up a potential Shadow Day. During Student Shadow Day, prospective students are matched with current MSA students based on their area of interest.  Parents do not attend Student Shadow Days.

For additional information about MSA programs please visit our MSA Programs section or email the MSA Office.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I submit another program application at a later date?

Please contact us for assistance. We will review each request as they occur. Applicants are allowed to apply for a maximum of three programs. We can add an additional forms if it is for a program already identified on your Student Information Form.

Can I remove a program application?

YES! Please contact us if you no longer would like to apply/audition for a program for which you have already submitted an application.

Can I make changes to previously submitted forms?

Yes. Please contact our systems administrator Karen Vais for assistance.