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#393243 02/27/02 06:32 PM
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ryan Offline OP
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I was not going to post anything about this for a while, but after some gentle "nudging" I guess I will fess up a little bit. It kind of goes along with the thread about making a living from piano.

I do not make a living from piano. I graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering and now work full time as a software engineer. I play, do the occasional recital, and teach on the side for my own enjoyment. One of the things I have always regretted is that I was not able to finish my music degree when I finished my engineering degree. I only needed around four more courses and two recitals to finish my bachelors in piano performance, but ran out of steam at the end. However, it has always been my desire to finish this degree, and to perhaps go on to work on a masters.

Around three weeks ago I was at work when it suddenly occured to me that I live next to a 1st-tier music school in CU, why not take a chance and apply. So, on an impulse, I sent in my registration and transcripts, met with the associate dean, and signed up for an audition.

My audition was last Saturday, and I think it went pretty well. It brought back memories of when I auditioned for a music school the first time - 16 years ago! I have no idea if I will be accepted. There are a ton of students applying to the school. Just to give you an idea, there were over 130 students at the pre-audition orientation last Saturday, which was the third weekend of auditions. The school only maintains around 500 students and there are nearly that many applying!

I will post when I find out more about my status. If I somehow manage to be accepted, I am not entirely certain how I will attend classes, take lessons, hold down my job, and still see my family. I haven't quite thought it through that far. But one step at a time. smile

Well, there it is. Nothing earth shattering, but something that might be interesting to some. If anybody has any questions, feel free to ask.

Ryan

[ February 28, 2002: Message edited by: ryan ]

#393244 02/27/02 06:43 PM
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smile smile smile smile After hearing you play this summer, any program would by LUCKY to have you as a student. Jodi

Oh, and what did you play for your audition?

[ February 27, 2002: Message edited by: jodi ]

#393245 02/27/02 06:52 PM
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Ryan:
Be sure to tell us how this comes out!! -- Some of us will just have to live vicariously through other people!!
-Brad laugh

#393246 02/27/02 07:11 PM
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Good luck....

Quote
I do not make a living from piano. I graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering and now work full
time as a software engineer. I play, do the occasional recital, and teach on the side for my own enjoyment.


I think i will do that.....

#393247 02/27/02 07:34 PM
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OK, let's think of things for him to play for his recitals.

How about (junior recital) a Charles Ives works, a set of Webern pieces, and Hindemith's Ludis Tonalis; (senior recital) Bach Goldberg Variations, the Hammerclavier, and half of the Chopin Etudes with Schumann's Happy Farmer as an encore.

Seriously, Good Luck!

#393248 02/27/02 08:14 PM
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All right ryan!

Putting it all on the line is what it's all about. We only get to do this lifetime once!


wgh
#393249 02/27/02 11:13 PM
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Gutsy move, Ryan. Can't wait to hear how it turns out.

I thought about going back, until... well,... uh,..... plans changed. I have a rollicking 2 year old instead of a class schedule. But he's fun, and I still have a lot to learn from my teacher.

#393250 02/27/02 11:31 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by ryan:
I was not going to post anything about this for a while, but after some gentle "nudging" I guess I will fess up a little bit.


Did I miss something?


For off-topic discussion, please feel free to visit www.coffee-room.com
#393251 02/27/02 11:58 PM
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Thanks for the kind words everyone. I didn't mention this before, but it feels a bit scary.

For audition I played the first movement of Beethoven's Op. 7, Chopin's Op. 25 No. 1, and the first movement of Bach's Italian Concerto. Fortunately I had played the first two last summer. I think I played the Chopin the best I have ever played it. It wasn't a huge program, but the auditions were only 15 minutes with half the time devoted to an interview, so it wasn't like there was much time to play. Also, I am still inbetween programs and had to scramble a bit to get this together smile

Ryan

#393252 02/28/02 12:12 AM
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Awesome.

I wouldn't be worried at all if I were you - the recitals are something that I'm sure you can easily dispatch, and the coursework will be just as easy since you won't be starting afresh.

Congrats on a bold move that definitely took a lot of courage to make.

#393253 02/28/02 09:36 AM
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Ryan,

You're a courageous man for sure! I wish you the best.

Let me know who your teacher on the campus is. I'm curious...

[ February 28, 2002: Message edited by: AndrewG ]

#393254 02/28/02 12:07 PM
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Ryan,

That is fantastic! Congratulations and best of luck on your pursuit. I am a mechanical engineer myself, who only fell in love with piano/classical music at 33 (36 now). Would never think of doing anything like you are(of course, I'm not a very good player). But my thoughts have actually been too focused on music lately, and not enough on my "former" passion - engineering. I do think that passion is still there - just need to dig it back up to the surface. I have been pondering a merger of the two fields -engineering and music. I've got a couple product ideas in mind, but no prototypes or anything. So far, the only remedy for this new "affliction" is to play the piano, and play it a lot! Good job.

Rick

#393255 02/28/02 01:57 PM
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Ryan,
As a Mechanical Engineer(ME) who quit lessons after 4 years because of heavy ME coursework, I pray that you get in and finish your degree. Maybe ask PianoWorld for a scholarship?
My instructor at the time (almost 25 years ago)tried like heck to get me to change my major to music. I just thought of something-maybe when my kids get older I can pursue it-hmmmmm(?)
Go Ryan!

#393256 02/28/02 02:01 PM
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Wow! Well done smile Hope you hear from them soon.

#393257 03/01/02 08:25 AM
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Hey buddy,

Glad you decided to come clean with the group here.

When you get in, you MUST remember to keep some lunch hours free for meetings at CF. Can't let something like *school* get in the way of having fun now can we?! wink

I'm sure you'll do great.

Dan

#393258 03/01/02 09:14 AM
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hey that's great!! i wish you all the best!! smile

#393259 03/01/02 11:58 AM
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Best of luck to you Ryan! I have a masters in music history (which didn't require any performance), and after being out of school for a few years I'm back in part-time to do a computer science degree. I started off in computer science (about 12 yrs. ago) and dropped out to go into the arts. Its funny that I'm going back into it again while you're going back into music. Think of it this way, you have the advantage of experience when playing (against/for/with) these younger music students. Like you, I plan to get a software engineering job some day and pursue things musical on the side. How was that working out for you?


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#393260 03/03/02 10:55 AM
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Thanks everybody for the encouraging replies. I really appreciate them! It helps me believe that I might be able to pull this off. First things first - I have to be accepted. I will post any updates as they happen. Right now I am just waiting to hear if I passed my audition.

Brendan - If I try to pull off a recital like yours (or MacDuffs :)), it will be anything but "easily dispatched"! smile

Vid - Software Engineering has worked out very well for me. It can be flexible (depending on who you work for) and the pay tends to be pretty good. However, there have been times (like the past three months for me) when I have had to work lots of evenings and weekends to meet deadlines. I tend to bite off more than I can chew and I am a bit worried that I might be doing that by adding school into the mix. If I can improve my process and get a jump start on next year's projects, things might work out.

Ryan

#393261 03/03/02 11:26 AM
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ryan,
that is very kewl news. congratulations on taking steps towards a dream. that takes courage.

i would never have the nerve to play an audition, but i have been also fantasizing about going back to music school. i would go as a non-degree adult ed student, so i could take theory and ensemble classes, and not have a strict schedule to follow to meet requirements.

might be another option for others of us here who would like some of the advantages of formal music training without having to worry about meeting formal qualifications....

i did that years ago at mannes college in nyc, and it was a great experience.


piqué

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Grand Obsession: A Piano Odyssey
#393262 03/05/02 06:29 PM
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Wow,

I'm a little late here (OK, very late - been too too busy and with too too much traveling). But, Ryan I do applaud your effort. From what I've read here, the only thing you might have to worry about is if for some reason they believe that you are not "serious" about your music as a 20 year old might be. I know for a fact that this came up a long time ago at another institution. At times, the colleges can be quite snobbish.

But, CU is a good school.

And, its the effort that means something. To get yourself ready and to play under that kind of pressure again. That's where the real congratulations must lie. Did you have to do any theory, sight reading or aural testing as part of the audition.

Alex

ps - rumors of my demise, although highly hoped-for, were a little premature. And, Brendan if you read this, I don't know where Kingston (??) TX is. I am just north of Dallas in Plano. Plus, I shortly will post some interesting Lizst news for you.

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