Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

So I called the head of the music department of URI [University of Rhode Island] and I asked him about auditions and the criteria.. He said that they only give instruction on classical violin and that I need to play classical pieces for my audition.

Well. This sucks. I have to take up classical lessons again with my old teacher. I suppose the good thing about this is that I can ask him to plague my life with Bach which would be heavenly.

I just feel like I’m betraying myself in a way… My freaking college essay was about how I quit my classical lessons to concentrate on fiddling more for pete’s sake!!!!!!!! Now I have to take classical. I suppose not much will change though… Sessions all around, tin whistle for life, but I’m worried about the pipes. The instrument I’ve been crazy about for quite some time. I have a half set coming in February and now that I’ve learned of what I must do in order to do what I.. want to do… >_> I’m afraid I might have to give up the pipes. I don’t know why I’m thinking this but just the thought of all this is really overwhelming.

Anyways. Done venting.

Cheers,
Armand

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Forgot to add..

So, anyone have a similar experience or can anyone offer some advice? Or something??

Cheers,
Armand

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Are you planning on majoring in music? You might not be happiest at a school that only teaches what you aren’t really interested in learning.

For several years Carnegie Mellon offered a major in highland piping.… talk about something that stands out on a resume.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Keep the pipes…they won’t go anywhere..they’ll wait on you.

Just think of the awesome technique you’ll have upon graduation that you may then apply to whatever type of music you want…I wish I had you’re problems!

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

As a collegiate music major - and a classical pianist let me ask you to make sure that you really want to go into music. Wormdiet is right - if you quit violin to focus on fiddle then why are you wanting to major in music? I believe that you’ve mentioned in the past that you want to do music ed?

Regardless, music is an all-consuming degree. Switching majors after even just a year typically puts you at least a half year behind. Just make sure that you’ll stick with it before you put yourself through the trials of being a music major.

I love it, but it isn’t for everyone - and if you already aren’t a big fan of classical music then find out why you’re doing it.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Check out the discussion on Irish music schools; perhaps that’s the direction you need to go. If you don’t like classical music you will be miserable in a four year degree program, not to mention making eveyone around who does like classical music miserable. Think before you leap.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

I just finished an undergrad in math and engineering and am currently doing a masters in wireless comm. I picked up traditional music in 2nd year of undergrad, and my love and dedication for music has only grown since then. I also managed to teach myself fiddle, banjo, and harmonica during this time, so you already have an significant headstart with the instruments you already play. I don’t think you have to worry about having to give up one for the other in terms of fiddling for classical or visa versa due to the time constraints (unless you’re headed for Julliard). If you don’t enjoy classical music, that’s a whole other matter and you shouldn’t go into music performance. If fiddle/pipes/whistle is ALL you want, perhaps you want to consider ethnomusicology or something similar instead which would better embrace folk instrument traditions?

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Well, you’re only doing the Classical music to get a degree. So how long do you have to go? another 2.7 years? 1.7 Y? That will roar in. Before you know it, you’ll be out of college looking for a real job and mourning the loss of your time at college. That’s what happened to me and I still miss it, and I did Microbiology and Biochem fer fax ache. Not exactly subjects which you’re actually meant to *enjoy* other than for the challenge of gaining expertise in dry academic book stuff. Yet enjoy it I did. But that’s always the value of hindsight. You don’t know you’re having a good time till all the party balloons are burst, and you’re kicked out onto the street.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

I majored in psychology at a very academically challenging university and found the time to pick up the uilleann pipes in addition to riding my horse six days per week. I also avoided joining most extracurricular clubs and things like that to be sure that I had time for the horse, academics, and pipes. You make the time if it’s important and learn time management technique. My boyfriend just spent his first term of university learning the hard way that overcommitting yourself isn’t pleasant.

However, you also have to know what you’re getting into. If the music major at your uni requires 34854398 hours of practice per day on the violin, then you’re going to have some difficulty finding time to give the pipes the attention they deserve. The problem with uilleann pipes is that they require a lot of focus and effort to learn to play well, and if you have to focus that energy on another instrument, it might not be beneficial to your piping. If you are already super proficient on the violin and the music major at your college isn’t ridiculously hardcore and you’re not doing 3298472839 other extracurricular activities or having a social life, then you can do the music major and play pipes pretty easily, I imagine.

I miss college a lot, even though I spent a lot of time there wishing I was out. I one hundred percent agree with Danny’s statement about not knowing you’re having fun until the party’s over. Welcome to my world. I crawled out of the ivory tower and next year I’m crawling back in and never leaving.

At any rate, major in something you like and you’re interested in. As a first-year, you don’t even have to know what you want to do (and most people don’t). Just take a bunch of interesting classes. Just don’t major in music because you’re really into Irish traditional music. Major in music because you’re really into classical music and the theory behind it, because that’s what a music major at most universities is. If you’re like me and really ONLY into trad, you’ll be miserable and frustrated as a music major because you’re going to study and play classical music, which has very little do do with what you want.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Ok, my point wasn’t that you should only major in what you enjoy. But, my point is that as a music major you are expected to practice twenty or more hours a week (and that’s the minimum) not to mention ensemble work, theory classes, musicianship classes and the like. If you don’t enjoy what you are majoring in then you aren’t going to have fun during your college years. When I first started my undergrad we were told that 75% of music majors don’t stick with music through college. Most drop out in their sophmore or junior years. And, why get a degree in something that you quit to pursue other music?

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Hey - have you checked out Berklee College of Music? I’m about to graduate with a degree in violin performance. There are teachers for jazz, classical, rock, bluegrass…you can play in ensembles that feature everything from bluegrass and Celtic music to the music of Bob Marley and the Screaming Headless Torsos.
I work in the admissions office, if you have questions.
You can play anything you want. The string department in particular has a pretty lenient "design your own curriculum" kind of policy. By the way, students can now major in performance on five-string banjo, mandolin and (apparently) nyckelharpa.
Cara

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

You lucky so & so’s! When I was a lad, ( trouble in’t Pit ) you could only do classical music at Uni. Ah you young people of today, you just don’t know how lucky you are! says he, taking off his tweed jacket & reaching for his pipe & slippers & patting his old Spaniel! ( Ooops, now you know what I call mine! Oh, no, it’s OK - different thread! )

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

I guess that if you like Bach then you can’t be completely turned off classical music.

It might be a time to compromise what you like and kinda like.

…Musical theory is a lot of fun (not!!)

I wish you the best of luck.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

If it isn’t what you want to be doing, then don’t do it.

It’s a plan. It’s a simple plan, but it just might work.

KFG

Posted by .

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Armand,
How about that offer of assistance from Cara—Berklee is a great school, so don’t let that opportunity slip by you. If money is an issue, there are a number of music schools that offer pretty good scholarships (I think Berklee is one of them), so do some research on the net—a kid as talented as you should be able to get some help making it easier to afford going to one of the better (and more liberal) musical schools. But if a state university is what you can afford, there is nothing wrong with broadening your musical experience and expertise for a few years playing classical by day and trad at night. It might be tough to fit the pipes in, though, which would be a shame.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Hmm, I may have left out a few things..

I love classical music [Baroque hardcore]. Almost as much as trad music. I want to major in music education and I love music theory [I’m in AP music theory in my school and I l0ooooooove it]. I suppose the only thing I’m worried about is the audition and I suppose what happens after that.

I did/am consider/ing Berklee, but I don’t want to leave RI. I suppose the drive down/up to Boston from RI isn’t all that bad. The idea of more freedom over there definitely is a turn on. I’ll look into it more. I don’t know why, but I feel like something’s holding me back. I’ll get back to ya’ll on that one.

Cheers,
Armand

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

"…Musical theory is a lot of fun (not!!)"

What do you mean? Music theory is great fun! Many’s the time I sat in the student union bar, doing harmony assignments that weren’t even mine, just for the craic… And no, I’m not joking….

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Then if you DO like music theory and classical and want to be involved in music education, by all means go for it. Whether you have time for the pipes in addition to whatever the music major at your uni requires is something you won’t know until you get there. It all depends on your abilities at time management and functioning on more or less sleep (that’s how I managed pipes and college — if I didn’t get to practicing before the music building closed at 11pm, I’d sit in the back seat of my car. Sometimes at 1, 2, or one night during finals 3am. This was a lot fun during the Western Massachusetts winter). Also it depends on what other activities you want to be involved with and how extensive a social life you want. You’ll figure it out and figure out where your priorities are.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Your music school closed at 11? Wow, they don’t even lock ours down any more unless the whole school is closed - and even then there are exceptions. Some friends and I were playing soccer up around our music building around midnight a couple of Saturdays ago and there were people there practicing. On weeknights it isn’t unusual for there to be multiple people there all night long. So, rather than having the students prop doors open they now let us have access to the building 24/7.

Armand - it sounds like you would do ok with music ed. I thought you didn’t like classical at all, which was why I was confused. Music isn’t an easy degree - the one credit/semester hour classes (like choir or symphony) are killer classes. I’d look at some of the other music schools, but realize that NEC is as competitive as they come and they don’t always offer the greatest scholarships. Good luck.

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

That was 11 on week days. The building closed earlier on weekends, like at 5 or 6 or 7 or something. I learned that the hard way. Here I am trying to advise my boyfriend how not to be stressed at college and even senior year last year, work and social drama would get so insane that I remember standing outside the music building at like 8 or 9 o’clock on a weekend nearly having a meltdown because I couldn’t get inside to play my bloody uilleann pipes.

Once you were inside, you could stay there for as long as you wanted. Maybe not quite legally. Occasionally public safety would do rounds of the building at midnight or 1am. But they only checked the practice rooms. If you hid out in the bathroom upstairs, you were fine.

Oh, college… How I miss thee…

Re: Woe is me. College = classical violin.. BLAH.

Ah, they used to try and kick people out - that was when someone would hide and then prop the doors open. Much better to just let us stay in there legally.