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Yale Music Supplement?

bsDBer2010bsDBer2010 Registered User Posts: 449 Member
edited November 2008 in Yale University
So...I would consider music to be one of my "hooks" (juilliard, aspen, principal of a prestigious youth orch, etc.), but I'm not really interested in going into music as a career, (although if accepted into yale I would like to audition for the symphonic orchestra...)

But I recently heard from a friend who is applying to Yale as a music major that even music majors are admitted like any other student (i.e. SATs, ecs, etc.) and that the supplement is the only way they can incorporate music into their apps.

Does this mean that the music supplement is only for prospective music majors? Should I not consider sending in a supp. since I don't want to go to their music school?

Thx in advance for your help
Post edited by bsDBer2010 on

Replies to: Yale Music Supplement?

  • AdmissionsAddictAdmissionsAddict Registered User Posts: 1,405 Senior Member
    Supplements are not just for prospective music majors. Yale has tons of performance groups and they need people to play instruments in them. You can incorporate music into your app by listing your musical achievements or writing an essay about music. My understanding is that only musicians at or very near conservatory quality should submit actual CDs.
  • disasterousdisasterous Registered User Posts: 300 Junior Member

    Agreed with post above. Unless you are extremely talented, it won't help your application. They send the supplement to the Department of Music chair, and unless he says I want this kid, it won't play a factor in your application. (IF it's bad, it could not look favorably upon you)
  • HuntHunt Registered User Posts: 26,871 Senior Member
    Ask yourself this question: what will the musical supplement tell them about you that your list of musical accomplishments won't? My son is interested in music composition, so his supplement included scores and a CD of music--the list of accomplishments can't convey what the music is like, so a supplement makes a lot of sense for somebody like him. For a performer, I think the question is more difficult--your resume will show that you are a top performer. Will a CD add to that by demonstrating impressive performance ability? It seems to me that if you are a very accomplished performer and your music teachers/directors encourage you to submit a supplement, I don't see how it is likely to hurt you.
  • LZinusLZinus Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    Well, I believe that I'm not a talented musician. But I still submitted my CD, for I considered it a very important part of me. I love music, I love playing the paino, and I know that the music I do can show off my passion, so I sent it. That is what I want to show to them, and I don't care if it do help.
    And as you think it will be your 'hooks', that must be an excellent job, so why bother a try?
    Good luck, and wish to see you in Yale!
  • tli83tli83 Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
    Yale's own advice is only send a CD if you are exceptionally talented for a high school student and music is an important part of your application. They also say that sending something that is not of a high enough quality can work against you:

    Supplementary Materials | Application to Yale College | Freshmen | Office of Undergraduate Admissions

    I'm a sophomore now, and I sent a CD when I applied, but I don't remember them being quite so explicit about the 'exceptionally talented' part then, as I don't think I would have sent mine if I had seen it. Perhaps they have been getting too many recordings that do nothing either way for the applicant. Certainly with the number of very competent musicians here, you can imagine the amount of time it would have taken if they all had sent something.

    I don't know how helpful it is for your application, but sending a supplement does seem to get you on the radar screen of the music dept, which might be helpful if you want advice about the auditions for YSO or one of the Bands.

    After I applied I got a nice letter from someone in the music dept basically just saying "We're glad you applied to Yale. We liked your supplement, and you made good choices with an unusual piece" and then a more personal bit saying she had seen me play in a concert before and talking a bit about that and a problem she remembered with my performance (arrgh!). They also sent a bunch of information about music opportunities at Yale, although it was nothing you couldn't find out elsewhere. After I was accepted I got more information and another letter and some emails. That was a bit awkward because, although I wanted to keep playing, it was always my intention to scale back my music committment in college since I don't enjoy it that much and I'm not particularly talented, but they were really helpful discussing what I could fit in, and they couldn't have been more pleasant about it or free with their advice and information.
  • bsDBer2010bsDBer2010 Registered User Posts: 449 Member
    Thanks everyone for the feedback. I would think that Yale people would like my CD...I would consider myself pretty much conservatory (well, entering anyway) standard. But yeah, that could be a pretty big dilemma for me - would sending in a CD actually say anything more than a list of achievements, etc. But it's good to know that someone might actually listen to it if I choose to send one...

    Hmmm...more things to think about
  • disasterousdisasterous Registered User Posts: 300 Junior Member
    If you truly are an entering conservatory standard, by all means send the CD! We are just trying to say if you are the run of the mill, typical Ivy league student who is talented in music, don't waste your time.
This discussion has been closed.