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Average class hours for conservatories (music majors)?

vvvv433vvvv433 Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
I am a second year undergraduate violin student at a conservatory and am wondering what are the average hours of classes music majors usually have for their week? I have 26+hrs/week, NOT INCLUDING additional rehearsal and practice times. Please note I am taking only 1 optional class, which only takes up 2hrs/week.

In addition to this, we are advised to have 3 two-hour rehearsals a week for the chamber music class, and several required masterclasses we must attend in the evening. This leaves most students with barely enough time to study and practice their solo repertoire, let alone orchestra repertoire (unless you decide not to sleep :P).

I feel this is a bit too much; is this normal for a music school? There are 2+hrs of orchestra rehearsals 5 days a week, with no break in between the 2/3 week concert cycles.

Please let me know what other music schools (not limited to conservatories) are like, and if this is what music majors usually deal with. Thank you!

Replies to: Average class hours for conservatories (music majors)?

  • dramasopranomomdramasopranomom Registered User Posts: 296 Junior Member
    @vvvv433 I am guessing you are at a college with a connected Conservatory program?? I think this many credit hours is much more normal in such a program. Talk with your advisor about ways to free up some time; you may be able to take some credit hours in the summer (at a summer festival, or closer to home, if possible). A lot of programs are academic heavy for the first two years so that there is more time for practice and performance your Junior and Senior years. Definitely speak with your advisor and/or primary teacher about this.
  • MomOf2TeenGirlsMomOf2TeenGirls Registered User Posts: 302 Member
    Do you mean credit hours or hours in class? My D is often in class/rehearsal/lessons for 25+ hours/week at UMich. Dress rehearsals, chamber practices, mandatory recitals and other required concerts are in addition. She is dual degree, but her friends that are music performance only have very similar schedules - maybe a few less class hours.
  • MomofadultMomofadult Registered User Posts: 964 Member
    Schools schedule orchestra rehearsals differently. I know some schedule 2 hour rehearsals 3 days a week (as opposed to 5 days a week). Some assign students to orchestras through a rotation system - every performance will have a different mix of students and seating assignments. There will also be times when a student is off for an entire performance cycle.

    I think my kids would have found scheduling three 2-hour chamber rehearsals a week very difficult. I heard enough complaining about trying to get everyone together for minimal preparation before their coachings. This was probably not true of all chamber groups. My kids were in school with students who are now getting regular concert bookings as young professional quartets and some who have been named as the quartets in residence at several different schools. Some of these groups were very committed even as undergrads and I'm sure they maximized their rehearsal time.

    Good suggestion above about checking with your advisor. My kids have been out of school for a while - things change, but what you describe is more than the amount of time my kids spent in classroom instruction or rehearsals. They attended stand alone conservatories - string players. I can understand how you fell overwhelmed!
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