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Conservatory Method of Acceptance

barrowemma03barrowemma03 1 replies2 threads New Member
From what I understand, several music schools and conservatories accept new students based on how many spots are open in their respective instrument/voice part. Do any schools have this information available? Is there any way for me to know how many spots a school has available for the following year? for a bit of background that may help, I'm a contralto, and a few schools I'm looking at Include Curtis, Juilliard, and the Cleveland Institute of Music (although I'm not getting my hopes up about any of them lol). I've heard that Contraltos typically have a higher chance of getting in compared to other sections because it is a fairly rare voice part, but I'm not sure if that's actually true.
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Replies to: Conservatory Method of Acceptance

  • songbirdmamasongbirdmama 490 replies23 threads Member
    FWIW: Due to Corona virus, Curtis had no voice auditions this year, so one presumes they will "need" more of all voice types next year (both BM and MM).
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  • JeJeJeJeJeJe 327 replies1 threads Member
    I think that Colbern Conservatory (free tuition & free room/board) shows openings in their website during application season. But when I went to a joint conservatory presentation (Juilliard, Itacha, Eastman and SFCM) years ago, an admission officer answered to the same question, “We won’t tell how many openings or if there is any opening”. I thought that it is a general rule at most conservatories.

    If you call schools’ admission office directly and tell your particular voice type and interest, some officers may give you an idea if (how many) there will be openings in fall 2021. However, waiting to contact them until July / August may be better since all schools are still currently working on fall plan and enrollment. Some students may take a gap year / leave-of-absence in fall 2020, then enroll in fall 2021.
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  • bridgenailbridgenail 1221 replies6 threads Senior Member
    The conservatories you list take very few students yearly. Even if you could get a number on a particular voice type...I would guess it would be one or two. Does that number help? Maybe not.

    At a school like IU where you can find the numbers if you dig and/or call...it will be a yield of 20 VP students (so maybe 30 offers). Half of those will go to males, half females. Then you need a mix of voice types (that will be dependent on current VP students and future unannounced show). So again a small number.

    Let’s make a big assumption that you CAN figure out all these variables and plug it in to a formula and find out that Curtis will make 1 offer of your voice type, Juilliard will make 2 offers and IU 3 or 4. Now what?

    The numbers are daunting at all selective schools. So the best you can do is work with an experienced teacher to get a good school list, throw your net a bit wide if it will include the very top...and see what happens.

    Note: the voice changes a lot during college so, imho, the teachers will be looking at the breadth of talent not simply the fact that you may be a “contralto”.

    I hope this doesn’t sound discouraging. It’s just meant to get you to focus in the areas that really matter: a good experienced teacher and practice. The rabbit hole of numbers, imho, often creates a lot of frustration and anxiety. A good teacher can alleviate those concerns and direct your attention in more positive, productive ways.
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  • thisismynameOHthisismynameOH 57 replies3 threads Junior Member
    In general what you said is correct - the conservatories take what they need to fill for voice in terms of numbers. At SUNY Purchase it is a very small conservatory. Typically they take 10-15 students each year. I think in terms of Sopranos they took 5. There were 3 boys in my D incoming class. One bass and not sure other the other voices. The head of the program was pretty upfront during auditions so you should be able to ask that when you visit the schools (either in person or virtually). It depends on where you apply of course and if you want performance based education or not. Some of the larger conservatories with graduate students will be hard to be in performances as an undergrad.
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