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College Options
#1506015 08/30/10 02:40 PM
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Well folks... it's getting to be that time laugh

Senior year has absolutely KILLED my music. 5 APs and a bunch of tennis has turned music into something to do in between activities instead of being an activity itself.

I'm starting to narrow down my college options. Here's my list so far in no order whatsoever(I'm sure you can probably tell what state I'm from haha):
-James Madison University
-William and Mary
-University of Virginia
-Washington and Lee
-University of Richmond
-Virginia Tech
-Wake Forest
-UNC-Chapel Hill

After talking with my parents, we've decided that a music major or minor is just not going to work out, although the only AP exam I got a perfect score on the subsections and over was music hahah. I have a few questions:

1. To what extent can non-music majors have acess to practice rooms? Be able to take music classes/lessons? Have access to performance opportunities?

2. If you are familiar with any of the music programs at the schools I mentioned could you give some opinions on them? or know of any near the mason-dixon line that I should check out?

Matt

Re: College Options
LiszThalberg #1506023 08/30/10 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Debussy20
.....1. To what extent can non-music majors have acess to practice rooms? Be able to take music classes/lessons? Have access to performance opportunities?....

First of all: From that list of schools, it seems you've been doing very well for yourself, so congratulations for that, and congratulations on your prospects!

I don't know about any of those specific schools, but my experience (a long time ago) was that the answers for all of what you're wondering about are exactly what you would like them to be. I went to a school that I think was similar to some on your list, and not only did the music department accommodate people like me (and you), they seemed to feel a commitment about it and to greatly value the participation of non-music majors. Practice rooms? Absolutely. Classes and lessons? Absolutely. (I studied with the top teacher on the faculty -- the one who taught the piano majors, even though I wasn't that great smile -- and was constantly taking music courses, almost enough for the major even though I wasn't trying to do that.) Performing opportunities? Absolutely, depending on how good and how serious you are.

Check it out with the individual schools -- I don't think there's any downside in 'revealing' that you're interested in this. Of course you can't always be sure that what you get told about such things is totally true, but in this case I think you're likely to get favorable answers, and that they're likely to be true. And I think they'll be thrilled about someone like you who's so interested in music in addition to what you'll be majoring in.

Re: College Options
LiszThalberg #1506036 08/30/10 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Debussy20
Well folks... it's getting to be that time laugh

Senior year has absolutely KILLED my music. 5 APs and a bunch of tennis has turned music into something to do in between activities instead of being an activity itself.

I'm starting to narrow down my college options. Here's my list so far in no order whatsoever(I'm sure you can probably tell what state I'm from haha):
-James Madison University
-William and Mary
-University of Virginia
-Washington and Lee
-University of Richmond
-Virginia Tech
-Wake Forest
-UNC-Chapel Hill

After talking with my parents, we've decided that a music major or minor is just not going to work out, although the only AP exam I got a perfect score on the subsections and over was music hahah. I have a few questions:

1. To what extent can non-music majors have acess to practice rooms? Be able to take music classes/lessons? Have access to performance opportunities?

2. If you are familiar with any of the music programs at the schools I mentioned could you give some opinions on them? or know of any near the mason-dixon line that I should check out?

Matt


Matt:

My elder daughter just headed off to Washington and Lee this past weekend. She plays quite well, but she has no interest in pursuing music in college other than as a avocation. She did, however, contact the music department and asked about opportunities for non-majors and non-minors. They couldn't have been nicer. They told her to settle in, get her schedule locked down, and then to come see them.

Question: Have you done any accompanying for soloists? It's a great outlet for non-majors, and you can make some $$ if you're good at it. You do have to be a good reader. A really good reader, actually.

Re: College Options
wdot #1506052 08/30/10 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by wdot
....accompanying for soloists....you can make some $$ if you're good at it. You do have to be a good reader. A really good reader, actually.

....plus I would think you probably have to be able to transpose on the spot or almost on the spot.

Anyway: I don't think we need to gear him toward anything specific like that, unless he was thinking of that himself.

Re: College Options
Mark_C #1506153 08/30/10 06:53 PM
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I'm a strong supporter of doing a double major in music and whatever else you're interested in. If you're good enough to get into good schools like that and good enough to juggle all that you do, you could probably do a double major if you really wanted to.

But to give you advice towards the question you asked, in addition to contacting the music schools of those respective universities, you should also send a few cold emails to some of the students. Undergrads may not be listed, but I just did a quick search at UVA, and immediately found the contact information of a piano grad student. You could send out a couple emails to several people like that at each school to find out whether the real policy differs much from the formal policy that the administrators tell you about.

Re: College Options
MarkH #1506886 08/31/10 10:19 PM
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I doni't think a music major will work out. Even as a double. I haven't set a firm audition rep. so this year my teacher and I are just working on technical issues and some pieces I've always wanted to learn but never had time.

Another question: Say I go on to 4 more years at grad school, can you enroll as an undergraduate in the music department or would grad school and music conflict too much?

Matt

Re: College Options
LiszThalberg #1506919 08/31/10 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Debussy20
Senior year has absolutely KILLED my music.


No it didn't.

Originally Posted by Debussy20
1. To what extent can non-music majors have acess to practice rooms? Be able to take music classes/lessons? Have access to performance opportunities?


It depends on the school and their music department's enrollment. Courses and practice rooms have to go to majors and minors first. Others come later, and it may even vary from year to year.

Originally Posted by Debussy20
2. If you are familiar with any of the music programs at the schools I mentioned could you give some opinions on them? or know of any near the mason-dixon line that I should check out?


UNC Greensboro, UMD College Park, WVU, Temple, Westminster Choir College, etc...


"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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Re: College Options
LiszThalberg #1506925 08/31/10 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Debussy20
...Another question: Say I go on to 4 more years at grad school, can you enroll as an undergraduate in the music department or would grad school and music conflict too much?

Way premature to even be thinking about that.
Put it out of your mind. smile

P.S. And anyway....I've never heard of anyone actually doing that, and I'd be surprised if anyone here ever has heard of it. It would be a bit weird.

Re: College Options
LiszThalberg #1506929 08/31/10 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Debussy20
Another question: Say I go on to 4 more years at grad school, can you enroll as an undergraduate in the music department or would grad school and music conflict too much?

Matt



It's hard to say definitively without knowing what graduate program you're talking about, but I'd be willing to bet that trying to get another undergraduate degree while enrolled in a graduate program is unrealistic.

Most graduate students in the sciences put in 50-70 hour weeks (if not longer! eek ) on their research, coursework, and teaching duties. You don't want to be pursuing another degree on top of a workload like that.

...not to mention that your advisor in the graduate program would likely not be enthusiastic about your spreading your time and energy in such a manner.

Re: College Options
Monica K. #1506968 09/01/10 12:18 AM
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Instead of pursuing a formal music degree, you may also want to consider getting certification from an exam system that provides a curriculum somewhat like what you would receive in music school. Or, you could aim to compete in some of the amateur competitions...but for most of them, you still have quite a few years before you're old enough.

Also, college will likely be even busier than highschool (even accounting for AP courses). If piano really matters to you, make time for it even if you're really busy.

Re: College Options
Frozenicicles #1506971 09/01/10 12:21 AM
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I think we should all be telling him that he shouldn't even be thinking about this right now. smile

Not just because he can't know what he'll be wanting to do at that point, but because devoting any thought to it right now is a distraction from things that he really could benefit from focusing on.

To Debussy20: I imagine that the reason you're asking this is that you're afraid of losing your devotion to music and your progress with it. No reason to worry. Keeping on going with it in the future doesn't at all depend on majoring in music or getting a degree in it. You don't have to look any further than right here to find many people who are examples of this.

And keep in mind what Frozenicicles said about the amateur competitions. Those events give an additional new venue for people like you to stay active with serious piano pursuit -- and you will already be old enough for some of those competitions (although not for most, as she said). But anyway, you won't need any music degree or certification for what it seems you want to be doing.


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