I'm a high school student wanting suggestions on possible conservatories for further violin performance study.
I'm currently 15 (auditions for entry into conservatory would be in about 1.5-2 years time) and I've been playing the violin for 5 years.
Mendelssohn Violin Concerto
Mozart Violin Concerto 5
Bach G minor Sonata- Adagio
Bach E major partita- Preludio, Loure, Gavotte de Rondeau
I practise for around 3-5 hours everyday.
I do 3 octave scales in every key (major, melodic minor and harmonic minor) and scales in octaves.
In addition to that, I play some Kreutzer etudes.
I'm interested in music schools in America or in Europe.
I'm currently studying German. My dream would be entering into Curtis, Julliard, New England, Hanns Eisler in Berlin or Vienna performing arts school, but I doubt I could get in...
Could I get some conservatories that would be suitable for me? Note that I would be auditioning in about 1.5 years, so I would hopefully be playing some harder repertoire.
(Also any repertoire choices for my level would be appreciated)
Thank youu :)
What does your teacher say?
That's great rep to have after 5 years of study. What nobody can tell from your post is how well you play that stuff. I'm no teacher or pro, but I'm always skeptical when I see a lot of impressive repertoire but not very many technical studies .. just just 3-octave scales and "some Kreutzer."
Apply for and attend a summer music festival where the teachers you are interested in studying with teach. The teacher-student relationship for undergraduate is absolutely critical to developing and launching a music career, and establishing that long-term relationship can start in a smaller setting.
You mentioned on a
Highly recommend you do festivals like Aspen, Heifetz, Brevard, etc...this summer, and you'll get a really good idea. Get your app material ready because deadlines are approaching.
There are lots of threads on this site regarding your concerns. You might be able to find helpful advice. It would be nice if you posted a short clip of your playing so we know how well you play the repertoire? I know of one late-starting guy who has only played for five years but plays your listed repertoire or equivalent beautifully. Also, it is okay not to attend summer music festivals. Many pre-college musicians don't. It's okay if you don't play a lot of etudes, as long as you work on repetitive exercises to make up for them (my violin teacher rarely assigns etudes and uses repetitive exercises as substitutes, which works just as well).
There are a hell lot of violin teachers in Germany. If you stay longer, I suggest getting one. Maybe I can recommend somebody if you tell me the area.
There is always the possibility of the gap year.
Hi Paul, I'm not interested in a gap year, I would like to start my studies straight away! ahahaha
I think what Paul may have been getting at with the idea of a gap year is that with your new teacher, an additional year of intensive practicing might set you up for possible admission into better schools than you might currently realistically aspire to.
I see, that may be a good idea Paul/Mary. I am not exactly familiar with the conservatorium entry process: so you can enter in an undergraduate course at any age?
Excuse me... how is it possible to play the Mendelssohn after just 5 years?
Kaori, yes, you can apply at 17, 18, 19, 20 and nobody will think anything of it, at least not in the U.S. I don't know how European schools are.
Yes, there are many violinists who can perform the Mendelssohn at an alright standard. The concerto was set for me to be my "challenge piece" , currently learning the notes of the first movement (2nd and 3rd complete, 3rd at performance standard)
Kaori, could you make a short one ( maybe a movement of something )and post it? Any device ( phone, etc. ) will do.
One minute, done with a phone, is fine. You could play the first half-page of Mendelssohn and that would probably be a pretty good guide. Or since your 3rd movement is polished, a minute of that would be fine too.
Ok, I think the 17th of November is a bit too short to find a good teacher and work with him.
Kaori-- thank you; that was illuminating. I am between lessons so can't say much right now. While you are at a very impressive level for five years of lessons, I am very sorry to say that you are not at conservatory entrance level in the US, at least not right now. I think if you are serious about getting into a good school, you are going to pretty much have to take a gap year and practice like crazy while getting the best lessons from the best teacher accessible to you. It will still be a long shot in my opinion, but my opinion is worth less than the opinion of those people who have actually worked with you in person so please take that into consideration as well.
Dear Mary, Thank you for your feedback! I am very open to any feedback that will improve any of my playing.
I think you ment to thank Mary Ellen as I did not reply yet. :)
Marc, thank you for your input! Your english is very good, and I appreciate you taking the time to listen to my performance.
I wanted to throw in a quick note that you're more advanced than some of the other students on this forum who are thinking about auditioning for violin performance programs. Basically, you *could* audition for a degree program in the US -- it just would be a third or fourth-tier school, and it'd be unlikely to lead to a performing career.
"Are there any particular technical exercises I can do to improve my bow stroke, and especially a quieter left hand? I am working on Kreutzer 8, 10, 13, 24, 37."
Now that I've had a chance to watch the whole video...
I agree with Lydia that you could audition and get into a third- or fourth-tier school in the U.S. right now, and that opens another possibility...instead of a gap year, look for such a school with an excellent violin teacher. There are some very good teachers at some such schools but you have to choose carefully. You could start college on time with the goal of continuing your fast pace of improvement to the point where you could audition for a conservatory as a transfer student, or perhaps as a graduate student after getting an undergraduate degree from the less famous school.
Hi Kaori, congrats on all your hard work! You've progressed very quickly indeed! But, I agree with Mary Ellen and Lydia.
Wow. I am absoloutely stunned by everyone's comments! I am so thankful for your constructive criticism, and taking the time to do so! How can I ever thank you back???
It's great you are recording yourself and actively getting feedback. Your spirit and commitment is definitely putting you on the right track.
Just to clearify what I ment earlier and where you asked for clerification:
To be fair, Lydia said that, though I agree.
Oh right, sry for the wrong reference.
I love reading these threads. Even though the OP is beyond my playing skill, all of the tidbits (and sometimes detailed treatises!) of advice should be generally useful to what I'm working on. I think a lot of students who have made "fast progress" have been heavily loaded with repertoire at the expense of scales and studies. But the latter will build the foundation, and I think Mendelssohn and Mozart -- from what I have seen among young students this is where the students with sound fundamentals can move beyond, and those without sound fundamentals tend to get stuck. I agree with the idea of using fast pieces as studies. I think that's underutilized. Especially I think Bach is considered too sacred for that, but it's really good material. Not just the E Major Prelude but anything called "Double" is a good study.
Jeewon's advice is exceptionally good.
I've compiled everyone's suggestions and constructive criticisms onto a word document, and I will be printing this out and will take up a special place in my music folder :)
Kaori, have you looked into the dates of summer programs in US? Do they not overlap with school terms in Australia?
Jeewon, thank you for putting the time to write up such detailed review and advice! This is like to watch a masterclass for me. I am definitely taking notes, especially about Kreutzer 2, 7, 8, 13, 26, all of which I worked in the past, but definitely should be reviewed from time to time.
Yixi, thank you so much for your kind words! I hope to make music a career, but if that's not possible, I already have a Plan B sorted :)
By the way, why not go to music school in Australia?
Kaori, you mentioned that you've not worked on the Mendelssohn first movement and will work on it next. I find this movement, particularly the 1st page, is extremely good for working on intonation. It was working on that movement that it finally gave me a clearer concept of how to listen to my intonation carefully. In comparison, I find the 2nd and 3rd movements are relatively straightforward.
Your playing is good overall. The advice given above is excellent.
Lydia mentioned Haffner Rondo. It's in the red book called "Fritz Kreisler Collection Volume 1." This book is worth the $30 -- easily. I've been working on the Haffner Rondo for a while. Honestly, it's a little bit too hard for me, but you should be able to do it in a few weeks. There are a couple of cadenzas and a snazzy ending with double stops. You might say Kreisler took a page from Accolay's book for the ending.
Kiki, I don't think Kaori is saying that. I think Kaori is referring to the summer holidays.
I read it as missing out on one week of school but I guess she could mean missing a week of summer program.
Ella, thank you for your opinion and reiterating my issues I need to fix in order to become a better musician! I have already played the Bartok Romanian Dances, Danse Espagnole (if it's the one by Falla), Romanza Andaluza Sarasate, and the Beethoven Spring sonata (which I absolutely adore!)
Every career has setbacks. It's how you respond to them that matters.
I do that too and it often is really enlightning.
Sung, I also love that video very much. A minor correction, the performer Yoojin Jang can hardly be called an advanced student. lol. She is an international competition prizewinner, a former student of Nam Yun Kim, Paul Kantor, Pamela Frank, just to name a few. She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts at New England Conservatory:
Sung and Yixi,
On the student level thing, advanced (or intermediate, or beginner, etc) is hard to define because everyone's definition is different.
Kaori, as they say, the worst they can tell you is no and that is far from the end of the world. If you learn something along as you prepare your audition video, then it's already a "win" for you.
The path is slightly different for each person, and all you can do is try your best, work hard and be patient.
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