Son is a high school junior, highly qualified trumpeter (both classical and jazz, but leans more toward classical), who loves music but wants to keep his options open. Has decided against a freestanding conservatory, because he probably wouldn’t have time to get to an academic college class or two. He’s considering universities with strong music schools, or at least a strong trumpet studio, where he could major in trumpet performance, while also taking academic classes. He is not interested in music education. His audition will likely not keep him out of any school. His grades are very good (mostly A minus to A in mostly honors and AP classes at a good suburban high school), hasn’t been able to take an SAT or ACT yet, don’t know if he will be able to, but based upon how he’s doing on practice tests, I think a 34/35 is where he’d score on the ACT. A conservatory on a college campus that encourages taking academic classes would be an option, but he doesn’t want Oberlin. He also is not keen on going to a school where he would be taught trumpet by grad students, rather than trumpet professors, or to a conservatory that is extremely competitive, with high pressure and very frequent chair auditions. His personality is such that he could probably work with a variety of trumpet professors.
So far, the list is: Boston University, U of Maryland, U of Michigan, McGill, Indiana University (Jacobs school of Music), Arizona State University. And because of local connections, University of Connecticut, and University of Utah.
Any families who have recently gone through the admission process for trumpet performance major have advice, other schools we should look at?
No Trumpet Performance experience here… my son is a clarinet performance major who’s just completed the process. BUT, I remember going to University of Delaware’s School of Music Day (they’re our flagship school that my son had no interest in attending cause they’re 5 minutes down the road) when they had just become a Music School (vs Music Department). Anyhoo, I remember them introducing their new trumpet professor and the fact that he brought about a dozen of his students with him from other universities so the trumpet studio was now full and only accepting a few students. I thought to myself… WOW… must be a GREAT teacher if his students transferred from wherever they were in college to follow him to UD. I know that stuck with me. So… worth looking into. That aside, plug for Mary Pappert School of Music at Duquesne University, whose brass ensemble was pretty awesome. As is the Music School itself. A Class Act over there!! Hidden gem, so to speak.
By the way, my son was also not interested in attending a stand alone conservatory. The key to the process is seeing if he can get lessons with the trumpet instructors at various schools. Now with everybody “Zooming” it should be easier to do. We traveled to all schools for those lessons last year. That’s what he did until he found the ones he clicked with both professionally and personally… after all he was going to be spending 4 years with them. After that, it was easier to whittle down the list and those were the ones he applied to and ultimately auditioned at. The Journeys thread is a good place to hang out to glean information. Maybe you can start the one for class of 2025
My daughter (viola) is finishing up her third year at Baylor University. The brass there seem unusually strong. She’s been very happy at the school. Check it out!