Oberlin Conservatory

August 31, 2005 at 05:41 AM · Hi, everybody :)

I am a senior in high school and I am applying early decision to Oberlin College of Arts and Sciences, and hopefully to the Conservatory of Music as well so I can pursue a double degree major in violin performance and psychology. How difficult is it to get into Oberlin Conservatory? I'm not really that fantastic of a player. I have some difficult with technique, intonation, etc. I don't know, maybe it's just me, but a lot of people think I'm good, but I just don't feel confident about my playing. I'm worried that I won't play well at my audition because my intonation is really bad. Chords are especially difficult for me because my hands are REALLY small.

The Oberlin Conservatory doesn't require much for auditions. Major/minor scales in 3 octaves, a study (Rode, Dont, Paganini...), the first movement of a concerto, and an unaccompanied Bach sonata or partita.

So... are they very selective?

Replies (12)

August 31, 2005 at 11:36 AM · THis is a hard question to answer. THe only thing you can control is how well you play....do your best and prepare yourself well and you have a good shot at most anything in life.

It depends upon the judges, other applicants and your skill level, and I am not sure anyone can give you advice on these things except the judges themselves after all the auditions took place.

I went to OSU and can tell you what I heard about that school. I heard it was a fairly good place for music and although not as hard to get into as Julliard or CIM, it is highly respected in Ohio and trains some good musicians.

Just be as prepared as you can and I wish you luck.

August 31, 2005 at 12:32 PM · Hi,

Oberlin is a very good school. Sarah's point is a good one. The only way to know if you would be admitted or not is to audition and see what happens. The repertoire requirements seem standard. Auditions in big American Schools are usually quite short, so they have enough to know all that they want.

The next issue is always money - most scholarships for undergrad are based on your audition results. If money is an issue, you will have to wait also and see what kind of financial aid they offer you.

My question is a little different... do you know the faculty? Is there anyone that you would like to study with? For me, unless you are really a completed and accomplished violinist is the most important thing when choosing a school for undergrad.


September 1, 2005 at 01:42 AM · I don't know the faculty personally, but I would like to study with Gregory Fulkerson or Kyung Sun Lee.

Maybe a better question to ask would be what do they look for when they audition you?

September 1, 2005 at 02:53 AM · Hi Julie,

I'm just starting at the New England Conservatory in a couple of weeks. I think that what a teacher looks for in an audition is the potential to do more, and the individuality of the player. I think they want to see something unique that they feel like they can work with and help grow. The only thing to do is play your best and keep workin'!

September 1, 2005 at 05:08 AM · For a great school like Oberlin, you will need a solid technical base. That doesn't mean that you have to be stellar. Above all, they are looking for someone who has a great deal of potential, not a total fixer upper.

If you go there and show that you really do have a lot of room for growth, then you'll definately have a good chance.

Mr. Fulkerson is a wonderful teacher.

September 2, 2005 at 02:50 AM · So, if I'm not really THAT good (ok, that's just my opinion, a lot of people think otherwise, but they're weird...), but I show potential and the desire to learn... that's a good thing right? I'm so worried. :( I'm pretty sure I will get accepted to the college of arts and sciences, but if I don't get accepted into the conservatory, that throws off like all my plans for the future hahah

September 2, 2005 at 03:33 AM · At the end of the day, all you can possibly do is play your best. Whatever that may be, it will take you places. So stop worrying, play your best, and see what happens.

September 2, 2005 at 04:31 AM · "...but if I don't get accepted into the conservatory, that throws off like all my plans for the future..."



September 2, 2005 at 05:37 AM · What else am I supposed to do in the double degree program if I'm only majoring in one thing? It's not a double degree anymore!

I'm scared that "my best" isn't "the best." Ok, I think I'm being paranoid.

September 2, 2005 at 06:11 AM · I agree with Preston... you can get good anywhere. Preston and Emil didn't go to a conservatory for grad school and neither turned out poorly...

Emil took 4th in Paganini..

September 2, 2005 at 07:35 AM · Preston knows any card from Yale beats any pair from a conservatory. There's stratification and then there's stratification. Which is what it's all about in the real world. When I visited Oberlin in the 80s, it was all hippie chix. I dug it. My school was was all debutante chix with strange orange tans.

September 2, 2005 at 06:07 PM · As cool as hippys can be, debutantes come with trust funds!

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