Schools in the Netherlands, Europe, etc

March 31, 2004 at 06:06 PM · Has anyone here studied in Amsterdam, Germany, or Finland? I'm looking into conservatories in these countries for graduate studies and I would appreciate feedback from anyone who has studied there.


Replies (15)

March 31, 2004 at 06:23 PM · Talk to Carla Leurs about anything in the Netherlands...she's our resident expert. :)

March 31, 2004 at 07:04 PM · I have 2 friends who studied at the Conservatory in Utrecht (holland) who enjoyed their time there and have had considerable professional success since then. I understand there were even classes offered in English there for the benefit of foreign students.

As for Germany, there are MANY fine schools there. Freiburg, Cologne, Berlin are all great schools. there are others but I know less about them.

The Sibelius Academy in Helsinki is also a fine school. I don't know who teaches there now.

I remember an NY Times article a few years ago which stated that Finland produces more professional performing musicians (per-capita) than any other country in the world. Just an interesting little fact. Does anyone else remember this?

March 31, 2004 at 08:02 PM · Germany:


Munich has also a fine school

Anyway, Chumachenco, Rissin, and Bron, are just some of the many great teachers there.

March 31, 2004 at 11:25 PM · Greetings,

one way to do this is to backtrack. That is, find competitionwinners from European countries in the Strad or whatever, checkout their teacher and then locate the Institute. Also, I went to yesterday and found some links to various schools all over the world.



March 31, 2004 at 11:25 PM · Just to elaborate on Joesph's comments, I believe Chumachenko teaches in Freiburg, correct?

March 31, 2004 at 11:35 PM · royal conservatory in the hague is pretty good, its in amsterdam. im thinking of applying there. and the amsterdam conservatory too.

April 1, 2004 at 02:37 AM · Actually, Chumachenco teaches in the Munich Hochschule (that's where she taught Batiashvili and Julia Fischer).

April 1, 2004 at 05:37 AM · Maybe we have 2 different Chumachenkos in mind?

I was thinking of Nicolas.

Are they related?

April 1, 2004 at 03:02 PM · I was talking about Ana Chumachenco. As far as Nicholas, I have also heard very nice of him (no idea if they're related, though).

April 1, 2004 at 11:56 PM · yes, they are related

April 2, 2004 at 12:03 AM · I have also heard very good things of the Hochschule in Hannover.

April 2, 2004 at 12:26 AM · Greetings,

flipping through this months Strad I noticed that Mr Ana also teaches at an Italian Institute so he must be pretty busy...

Also, for the international Level experienced solists who are too busy to read the aforementioned magazine, a replacement for Prof Ellerman (?) is being sought for the Hanover Institute.

Since my rabbit is now deceased the field is wide open,



April 16, 2004 at 05:20 AM · Thanks, everyone, for your suggestions. "Backtracking" hadn't occurred to me...sounds like fun.

April 17, 2004 at 10:06 AM · In The Netherlands:

First of all The Royal Conservatory is in The Hague. Their orchestral program is one of the best in the world (at least when I was there) and The Juilliard Orchestra could learn a lot from what is happening there. As to faculty: Coosje Wijzenbeek is a phenomenal teacher. Jaring Walta is also very good, especially if you feel you need some more techique.

Amsterdam has a stronger faculty, in the sense that they are more well known. Alexander Kerr has some amazing students and ofcourse playes himself amazing (concertmaster of Concertgebouw)

Germany: Bron has indeed a bunch of amazing students and although he has a lot of opponents, I think it is the same story as with Dorothy Delay. People believe that if they study with him, they will get a career as Vengerov... which is bound to lead to dissappointment. He is in Cologne.

Ana Chumanchenco is amazing, but she has been very sick and I don't know how much she teaches. She is in Munich. Nicholas Chumachenco is in Freiburg as is Rainer Kussmaul. About Nico I have heard mixed reviews. Last time I had a lesson with him is 13 years ago, so I cannot give you an updated idea. But if you go to Europe to check out teacher, do not forget to check out Kussmaul. His students are fantastic and I love his concstent putting the music in front of everything else. He is one of the most honest musicians I have encountered.

Switzerland: In Basel is Raphael Oleg, a real violin animal. If you need some more flair in your playing, he is the one to go to. He is a fun person, great violinist and cool to hang out with. Nice guy!

HOWEVER the best kept secret as to teachers is Stefan Muhmenthaler (former student of f.i. Perlman). He is possibly one of the best teachers in the world. Kind of a Weilerstein story. He worked very hard to figure things out and therefor can explain them like nobody else. Also he has besides the conventional knowledge, a great way of making peoples sound gorgious through some unconventional methods. He will teach you to play the violin most effectively and at the same time also will teach you to make a bridge between your heart, mind and fingers, so you can truly express the music. He teaches in Neuchatel at the Conservatoire. Really check him out!

Ofcourse there are many other possibilities: Berlin has 2 great conservatories, as does Salzburg and Helsinki is also not bad. The best thing you can do, is just come to Europe, buy yourself an Eurrail and travel to all the different places. Teachers choice is as you know very individual, but you also need to feel comfortable with where you are. Most of the conservatories have at least 1 or 2 famous teachers, Maastricht (a small conservatory in the south of Holland) has for instance Boris Belkin, and in Brussels is Igor Oistrakh. Lausanne has Pierre Amoyal and Winterthur in Switzerland Gyorgy Pauk. Do yourself a favor, buy recordings of the people you are interested in, or if their are non available, see if you can listen to students. Again though, the best thing you can do, is just come here and work with people.

Good Luck!

April 17, 2004 at 11:59 AM · I would also like to add Grigory Zhislin and Boyarsky, in England who are both great teachers, Dora Schwarzberg, Yair Kless and Kuschnir in Austria. These are also teachers, though not in the countries you mentioned, should be given very strong consideration based on the quality of their students.

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