"Decent" Music Programs to Study Composition

<p>I am applying to schools as a composition major this year.
I already have my reach schools and safety Schools chosen: Oberlin, Eastman, Jacobs School of Music etc.
My question is this: What are decent composition programs? Maybe not top ten but still good.
I want a program that i can be fairly confident about being accepted, but also one that I know I can receive a good education from. A school where I can graduate, and be in a position to be able to apply, and compete, for a spot at a top grad composition program would be preferable.
So far i'm thinking that a place like the University of Austin Texas or Stony Brook might be what im looking for. Please let me know what you think.</p>

<p>A very recent thread: <a href="http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/music-major/1214747-mid-level-schools-composition.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/music-major/1214747-mid-level-schools-composition.html&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>The OP of that thread was looking for a more conservative tonal composition department. From your list I have no idea what aesthetic you're looking for, as the colleges you listed are all over the board. I also have no idea what school you would most likely be accepted to, not knowing your work and experience.</p>

<p>However, for a solid and exciting undergrad experience which could lead to a good grad school look at, in addition to all the choices we already listed (and probably repeating some because I don't feel like doublechecking,) Grand Valley State in MI, CSU Long Beach, College of Charleston, Wesleyan, Florida International, Williams, Tufts, Swarthmore, Sarah Lawrence, Goucher, Skidmore, Bucknell, UNLV, UMKC, UM Columbia (Mizzou), Vanderbilt, Lawrence, Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado College, Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Cornell, UCLA, Univ. of Puget Sound. I could go on, and on...</p>

<p>I'll leave it to another time to discuss what I think it would take for a composer to be accepted to a top tier grad school. But I do think it's possible coming from almost any undergrad program - as long as the composer has talent, drive, & networking skills.</p>

<p>DD was recently a guest performer for a non-majors composition class. She was there to help them learn to write for singers in a chamber environment by trying their works and coaching them as to what worked and did not work and how voice interacted with instruments. She said several of the composers did amazing pieces. They intended to continue composition after their undergrad degree. </p>

<p>You do not have to major in music to progress. You need to find the right teachers and environment whatever schools you choose. You can choose some safeties that meet these criteria, but also choose your audition schools based on these criteria.</p>

<p>Are you applying to BM programs at conservatories, only?</p>

<p>The teacher can be very important.</p>

<p>Off the top, there is Oberlin, Manhattan, Mannes, Juilliard, NEC, Eastman, Curtis, Peabody. There are schools in the Midwest and Texas (North Texas?) and CA which others can list.</p>

<p>Then I think of Ithaca, Hartt, Lawrence, Boston Conservatory, Temple's conservatory, various state university BM programs: others will list more of these.</p>

<p>You can study composition at many colleges, or do double degrees at schools like Oberlin, Bard, Tufts, Harvard (the last two with NEC).</p>

<p>Also suggest you check the compositions of faculty, the courses, and the philosophy/ruling aesthetic at schools you are interested in.</p>

<p>Not trying to add to the pressure, but you need to firm up your list pretty quick and check application deadline dates. Some colleges had application deadlines as early as Novemember 15th, and thats really really close. Others will have a Dec 1st deadline, some will have a Jan deadline, and some will pretty much accept applications anytime.</p>

<p>Just make sure that you don't miss a deadline for a college that you are seriously interested in.</p>

<p>For the university music schools do check if your test scores, grades and courses taken are within the range printed on the university/college website. Have you had a frank talk with your parents about costs? Is your safety a school you would attend and is it a financial safety as well?</p>

<p>We visited Sarah Lawrence (my idea) and while I thought the music dept was great, S wants to be in a bigger environment. What I loved about SL was the freedom of the curriculum. You get to design your own. S found a piano in one of the profs open offices and spent time practicing as he had lessons in Manhattan the next day. Prof came in and introduced himself and gave us a one on one tour of the dept and how the program worked. Very hands on, very nurturing. The music building was hopping with activity - a little like a scene from "Fame". I would have applied in a heartbeat but I'm not the one going :(</p>