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Opinions Matter


Replies to: Opinions Matter

  • saintfansaintfan Registered User Posts: 8,274 Senior Member
    A poster here whose handle escapes me right now has a son who is a percussionist at Eastman. He loves it and does both classical and jazz, I believe.
  • saintfansaintfan Registered User Posts: 8,274 Senior Member
    University of North Texas would also be worth a look. It can be quite affordable, has a wide range of highly respected programs and is not in a location that would give your parents pause.
  • bigdjpbigdjp Registered User Posts: 177 Junior Member
    That would be me. My son is a percussion major at Eastman. Eastman percussion is FANTASTIC!!!!!!! I can't say enough about the program and how happy we are that our son is a part of such a fantastic and historic studio. The school itself is no slouch either!!!!!! Marimbagirl, get with the best quality teacher you can find. Look for someone who has a history of preparing students for the schools you are looking to attend. A college professor or professional symphony player if you can find one. At this point in high school, my own son was practicing 4-6 hours per day between mallet, snare drum and timpani. He was also a member of the local youth orchestra. Attend camps if you can. Good luck!!!!!
  • momsingsmomsings Registered User Posts: 776 Member
    I'm curious about Long Beach. I was there last week and thought it was pretty neat. What's the matter with it?
  • compmomcompmom Registered User Posts: 9,851 Senior Member
    edited February 2015
    i was referring back specifically to her list. BU and Ithaca might have good financial aid, as I said, but if she wants to stick to the list, the publics in California would be more affordable than the conservatories on the list. If she wants to go to a college program or a conservatory/music school program within a college or university, then yes, often privates offer better aid and can end up cheaper than publics.

    it really helps to go on the financial aid calculators for any school you are interested in. And if you want to expand your list to privates (other than freestandng conservatories) besides BU or Ithaca, financial aid may very well be very helpful.
  • SpiritManagerSpiritManager Registered User Posts: 2,819 Senior Member
    @momsings My guess is the parents aren't comfortable with a city which has a diverse population with some residents of lower income. They may not feel their daughter would be safe. I guess they wouldn't consider Yale either...or Columbia.
  • saintfansaintfan Registered User Posts: 8,274 Senior Member
    Rochester isn't exactly Mayberry if it comes to that . . .
  • MARIMBAgirlMARIMBAgirl Registered User Posts: 18 New Member
    I will check out Eastham, thank you to all who recommeded this university. I been told that both Colburn and Eastham don't have a undergad conducting. Also, my parents are really pushing CSUN. I know they have a undergrad conducting unlike a couple of my choices. How do you see CSUN? @SpiritManager - Yes, you are correct on why my parents aren't comfortable with that and do fear I may not be safe. @compmom - So with financial aid, private colleges may be cheaper than public? Is this with most private or selected schools only?
  • compmomcompmom Registered User Posts: 9,851 Senior Member
    It's Eastman, just to make sure you have the right name. Part of the University of Rochester, which would offer financial aid.

    You really have to look at websites and do the financial aid calculators, which at least give a ballpark. The most expensive option is freestanding conservatory, though they do give merit aid (but not usually enough compared to financial aid elsewhere).

    The most affordable schools anywhere are Ivies like Harvard and Yale!!! I am not suggesting them but overall you would be surprised at the aid at some schools, but it does vary, and for some schools aid means subsidized loans rather than grants.

    Just for instance, here are the pages for CSUN:


    Here is an article about CSUN's ranking in one paper, for what it's worth: http://www.csun.edu/mike-curb-arts-media-communication/news/csun-named-among-top-25-music-schools-hollywood-reporter

    Here are undergrad and grad programs at CSUN: http://www.csun.edu/mike-curb-arts-media-communication/music/about-degrees-offered I do not see ANY undergrad conducting.

    Long Beach is great too.

    Here is the financial aid page for Eastman. Do the "net price calculator" on the left side, and look at the cost of attendance etc. http://www.esm.rochester.edu/financialaid/ You can do this for any school.

    There is a reason that you cannot find undergrad conducting. For an undergrad degree, you would really want to get the foundation necessary for conducting. The study of music history, theory and aural skills, ethnomusicology, composition and/or an instrument prepares you for the narrower focus later on. You can take an undergrad course in conducting but it would not really be a great idea to try to major in it that early on.
  • musicprntmusicprnt Registered User Posts: 6,253 Senior Member
    I don't know what ratings you are going by, but if you are going by the likes of US News and World report, I would tell you those ratings don't mean much. The schools you list are all very different, they are at different levels of music in some or many ways, it terms of competition to get in and so forth. Colburn is a small conservatory that has the distinction of being close to the LA Phil, and is also desirable (and competitive) because it is a full ride scholarship if you get in there. I don't know anything about percussion there, can't speak about the teachers and such, but because it is full ride it is going to be very competitive.

    Boston conservatory is generally not as competitive as some of the other conservatories, but like them they may not be very good with aid, from what I know.

    Berklee is primarily a modern music/jazz school, and is very expensive, and aid there may not be as good as you need (it will depend on your playing)

    Ithaca is more known for its music ed program, it has a decent performance program, is in the less competitive tier of schools overall...I can't speak about financial aid there.

    BU has a pretty big music school, and is fairly competitive. It is a music school within the larger university, so you I believe have to get admitted to both the university and the music school. It is pretty expensive, so aid may be a problem there for you as well.

    NEC is one of the more well known conservatories. It is a very competitive admit (though it varies from instrument to instrument), and they are not known necessarily for generous aid, and most of it from what I know is tied to financial need, even the merit awards. Merit awards generally are tied to your playing ability, and in many schools unless you are super talented, they may not come close to being what you need (though FA might). As others have said, most schools don't offer undergrad conducting degrees (as far as I know), though usually you can take conducting electives.

    As has been said on here before, one of the keys is going to be the teacher on your instrument. Like I said before,the rankings don't mean much you see in college guides and such, the criteria they use is often laughably far from what music training entails (for example, USNWR was using things like class rank of admitted kids, SAT scores, etc, which for a music school have little to do with the quality of the students. I would ask specifically about your chosen instrument (IDK, do you major in Marimba, or is it percussion?), start with your teacher, then maybe people on here might know of good programs for the instrument.

  • momsingsmomsings Registered User Posts: 776 Member
    I agree that the studio of your chosen instrument is what is important. My kid chose a program "in the less competitive tier" because the professor of his instrument is exceptional.
  • MARIMBAgirlMARIMBAgirl Registered User Posts: 18 New Member
    Okay, thank you all! I really appreciate it :) Also, one more question, I am currently preparing a concerto (Paul Creston's Marimba Concertino op.21) for CSUN's youth philharmonic competition. I find myself getting nervous when I preform this piece for my family, and when I do I tend to mess up the piece. Any tips on how to ignore freaking out (getting nervous) while playing?
  • bigdjpbigdjp Registered User Posts: 177 Junior Member
    Oh yes the Creston. Haven't heard that in quite some time. Probably since my son was your age. Practice in from of people all you can. Give a concert in the living room to your family as practice. Grab your friends, family and even the dog and play in front of them. Make sure the piece is under your hands so you can concentrate on relaxing.
  • wcbandmomwcbandmom Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
    My son is also a percussion performance student at Eastman and is loving everything about his experience there (he's a freshman).

    Though I live in TX now, I'm originally from So. CA and grew up about 20 minutes away from CSULB. It's near the LA/OC border and is certainly not the worst part of Long Beach, and not any worse than the areas where some of these other schools are located (including ESM) but I understand where your parents are coming from. I had the same reservations about my daughter (not a music major) applying to USC and was secretly thrilled when she ended up at UC Irvine (though it was her second choice school) because I felt it was a much safer location than her first choice.
  • MARIMBAgirlMARIMBAgirl Registered User Posts: 18 New Member
    Thank you all! @bigdjp - Playing for my dogs didn't do anything actually, but having like a concert for my family in the living room did help. I'm feeling more comfortable with the piece. Thank you! @wcbandmom - My parents (mostly my mom) feels how you did for your daughter. She is not completely comfortable with my choices in Boston because of the distance and location.
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