I am an orchestral trumpet player, and I have decided that a liberal arts degree is more important to me than a conservatory degree. I absolutely loved Yale (but I don't have a chance of getting in) and St. Olaf. I know that Lawrence is a good option, although I haven't confirmed that non-music majors may participate in the conservatory at Lawrence. Where else is there?
I ruled out Emory, DePauw and Furman because I really don't want to go to a school with a lot of fraternities.
I have heard that getting by in Oberlin's music department as a non-major can be difficult. Same applies to Carnegie Mellon. I don't want to be bound to a five year dual degree program at schools such as Oberlin, Rochester/Eastman, and Harvard/NEC. A faculty member at NEC told me that the Tufts/NEC program has an impossible schedule.The orchestras at Vassar, Pomona, MacAlester, and Colby don't seem up to snuff. Nobody at Occidental bothered to answer my emails. Are the orchestras for non-majors at Johns Hopkins and Rice at the conservatory level, or close? I will be more than happy at Yale, St Olaf, or Lawrence, but I've been having enormous difficulty finding other places with such flexible and prestigious music departments. Answers to any and all of these questions are greatly appreciated. Thanks!