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Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
#2891282 09/17/19 11:11 AM
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My dream is to either be part of an orchestra or become a concert pianist. However, I know that both of those professions are hard to get into. I've been excepted to a college were several piano majors have gone to work for that city's orchestra - which would be a dream come true.
I guess I'm asking how to know if I have what it takes to become an orchestra pianist or a concert pianist?

I practice every day and I try to learn about new music theory concepts every day. I have no experience playing in an orchestra but I do play for my church band and I love performing.

Should I pursue this dream or do I need to focus on something else?

(Ps. I know that some orchestras don't pay well but as long as I have enough money to live, I'm happy with being able to pay piano all day)


Just a girl chasing the moon.
Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
GraceNotes #2891301 09/17/19 11:39 AM
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Hi Grace
I don’t believe anyone here can answer your question. Pursue your education and see where it takes you, but recognize that your chance of playing in an Orchestra is many times higher than being a concert pianist. For that, the route in the last few years is to win an international competition

But I am confused as you posted a couple of weeks ago that you really wanted to teach piano. Is this no longer a goal? I would recommend that you pursue the orchestra chair but you also think about developing the skills to teach as you may need both. They are not exclusive as the orchestra will not be a full time position.


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Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
GraceNotes #2891303 09/17/19 11:46 AM
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I don't think anyone on this forum is going to be able to answer your question without a lot more information about your skills, level of play, etc. You mention that you will be attending a music college. As an accepted student, they should have advisors, mentors, and faculty that you can speak with about your goals and what you want to get out of your music education. My advice is to set up an appointment with your school and to have this conversation them.


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Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
dogperson #2891308 09/17/19 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by dogperson
Hi Grace
I don’t believe anyone here can answer your question. Pursue your education and see where it takes you, but recognize that your chance of playing in an Orchestra is many times higher than being a concert pianist. For that, the route in the last few years is to win an international competition

But I am confused as you posted a couple of weeks ago that you really wanted to teach piano. Is this no longer a goal? I would recommend that you pursue the orchestra chair but you also think about developing the skills to teach as you may need both. They are not exclusive as the orchestra will not be a full time position.


I still want to teach piano but I realized that I also really want to perform. I was thinking that I could play for an orchestra for as long as possible then turn to teaching (or do both at the same time).


Just a girl chasing the moon.
Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
CLM Piano Learner #2891312 09/17/19 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by CLM Piano Learner
I don't think anyone on this forum is going to be able to answer your question without a lot more information about your skills, level of play, etc. You mention that you will be attending a music college. As an accepted student, they should have advisors, mentors, and faculty that you can speak with about your goals and what you want to get out of your music education. My advice is to set up an appointment with your school and to have this conversation them.


Thank you for your advice! I'll look into how to speak with someone at the school. (this seems like such a simple idea I don't know why I never thought it crazy)


Just a girl chasing the moon.
Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
GraceNotes #2891321 09/17/19 12:24 PM
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Presumably most orchestral pianists are part time, as the number of orchestral pieces that contain piano parts is very small. If you're a concerto soloist you're not even part time. You might get just a few gigs with a particular orchestra in your entire career. OTOH, if you are good enough to get gigs as a soloist with one orchestra, you might get gigs with several.

Maybe you could consider working as a rehearsal pianist for opera or ballet companies, or becoming an accompanist. I know one woman who plays for choir rehearsals a couple of times a week, as well as teaching and she really enjoys it. She does a few concerts a year, and the odd tour. She's amazing actually.

There are opportunities to play the piano professionally without being a famous concert pianist. The chances of becoming a concert pianist are tiny. Having said all that, I'm sure Yuja Wang twas told he same thing. If you can become an amazing pianist, things just might happen for you.

Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
GraceNotes #2891359 09/17/19 02:02 PM
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Most of the professionals that I know wear many hats. They teach private lessons, group lessons, play at Churches, direct choirs, accompany choirs and instrumentalists - in other words, anything and everything they can to make a living. Who knows where life may take you - learn all you can, get as much experience as possible, and stay open to opportunities. And learn how to run a small business...

Sam

Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
GraceNotes #2891380 09/17/19 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by GraceNotes
Should I pursue this dream or do I need to focus on something else?

There is a conservatory-trained musician who is a professional working pianist that is very willing to share advice with young musicians. He hangs out on Reddit's r/piano subreddit, and is actually one of that subreddit's moderators. You might want to drop him (yeargdribble) a PM over there and hear what advice he might have for your particular situation and prospects.


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"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
Tyrone Slothrop #2891383 09/17/19 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by GraceNotes
Should I pursue this dream or do I need to focus on something else?

There is a conservatory-trained musician who is a professional working pianist that is very willing to share advice with young musicians. He hangs out on Reddit's r/piano subreddit, and is actually one of that subreddit's moderators. You might want to drop him (yeargdribble) a PM over there and hear what advice he might have for your particular situation and prospects.

Thank you so much!! I'll head over there right now!


Just a girl chasing the moon.
Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
GraceNotes #2891386 09/17/19 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by GraceNotes
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by GraceNotes
Should I pursue this dream or do I need to focus on something else?

There is a conservatory-trained musician who is a professional working pianist that is very willing to share advice with young musicians. He hangs out on Reddit's r/piano subreddit, and is actually one of that subreddit's moderators. You might want to drop him (yeargdribble) a PM over there and hear what advice he might have for your particular situation and prospects.

Thank you so much!! I'll head over there right now!

OK. Not that I am interested in a career in music (I have a different one already), but in my last chat with him he underscored the importance to a working pianist of excellent sight-reading skills. I guess this is understandable. Often, you'll be called to play things at sight without time for rehearsing.


[Linked Image]
across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Chance of me becoming an orchestra/concert pianist?
Sam S #2891473 09/17/19 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Sam S
Most of the professionals that I know wear many hats. They teach private lessons, group lessons, play at Churches, direct choirs, accompany choirs and instrumentalists - in other words, anything and everything they can to make a living. Who knows where life may take you - learn all you can, get as much experience as possible, and stay open to opportunities. And learn how to run a small business...

Sam


+1 Wise advice. And, there is no reason not to try to attain your goals!



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