The Most Important Aspects of a Music Degree

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by MichaelAttaway, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. MichaelAttaway

    MichaelAttaway New Friend

    Jun 27, 2013
    Dallas, TX
    Hey everyone,

    I have several high school students that will be entering into college this next week, and I have been giving them some advice about music degrees. I know that there is a lot of aspects to a music degree (theory, history, form and analysis, applied classes, etc). What do you feel is the most important thing to focus on when in college?

    Thanks in advance!

    Michael Attaway
    Providence Brass

    Check out our latest article: Church Gigs - A Few Tips
  2. Cornyandy

    Cornyandy Fortissimo User

    Jan 9, 2010
    East Yorkshire
    Performance. Whatever else music is about performance has to be key
  3. Dr.Mark

    Dr.Mark Mezzo Forte User

    Apr 5, 2011
    Hi Michael,
    You asked:
    "What are the most important things to focus on on when in College"?
    1. Know what classes you need for the degree. Don't sign up for classes you don't need.
    2. Get with a study group of music majors of the same level as soon as possible. Create a study time and do it religiously and seriously. In time you can coordinate classes so the group will be in the same classes.
    3. Don't quit if you make a bad grade. Put on your big boy/girl pants, suck it up and keep going. Many really famous people made a bad grade or two before graduating.
    4. Show up for class on time.
    5. Turn off your I-devices while in class
    6. Use the study group to help each other when a person is having a tough time figuring out something hard.
    7. Don't be a smart-ass in class or in the study group. Be humble
    8. Treat school like a job or a tour of duty.
    9. If you get drunk as a monkey the night before and you've got a 8:00 A.M. class, be sure to go to class. Yes, you will look like you've got the flu but the lesson learned will be worth more than all the liquor consumed the night before.
    10. Ask people who had the teacher the year before what their tests are like?
    11. Making it through school is a crap shoot. People have car accidents, develop tumors, get pregnant(ladies! be sure to get on BC), go through divorces, experience births, bury parents, bury children, lose their homes to fire or flood, become addicts, kick addictions, and a host of other things that can stand firmly in the way of graduating including death. So, while you're there, make the most of it because it's a gift to be there, and no one can promise you tomorrow.
    12. Nothing feels or tastes better than winning. Protect and support your group to the finish line. Remember, you can do whatever you want, but you can't do it alone.
    This might not be exactly what you are looking for but hopefully it will help.
  4. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    .... and to paraphrase Dr Mark ..... persevere regardless, it's worth it.
  5. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    or another take on Dr. Mark -- the most important thing to concentrate on in college is -- ATTENDANCE, go to your classes - make a plan to study, learn, and be successful!!!! ----- actually, I can't really add much to Dr. Mark's advice --- but I wanted to put forth some effort in my response - ROFL ROFL ROFL
  6. Dr.Mark

    Dr.Mark Mezzo Forte User

    Apr 5, 2011
    See, with an education, you can take the 500 words I blundered through and boil it down to five:
    tedh1951 sez: "persevere regardless, it's worth it".
    Good job Ted
  7. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    Dr Mark's advice is sage, focused and specific. You could make a worse plan.
  8. Honkie

    Honkie Pianissimo User

    Feb 22, 2013
    Take school seriously. Be willing to trust teachers when they tell you something is important (even if it seems it isn't). To get the most out of of school, you have to accept the possibility that these people know more than you, and may understand your development in ways you can't.
  9. larry tscharner

    larry tscharner Forte User

    Apr 30, 2010
    dubuque iowa
    In most cases...keep your eyes and ears open and your mouth shut. I think it was in a Peanuts cartoon that I read these sage words, "you have two eyes and two ears and only one mouth because seeing and hearing are twice as important as speaking." You learn with your eyes and ears, you can speak only what you already know. In school not much emphasis is placed on what you know, but what they can teach you. Thats why its expensive. Best wishes.
    kingtrumpet likes this.
  10. Brekelefuw

    Brekelefuw Fortissimo User

    Mar 21, 2006
    You don't get better at music by sitting in class.
    Play as much as you can, with as many people as possible. They will be the people who you work with in the future, and who recommend you to others for work.
    Not playing with anyone? Call people and start your own group. Being a band leader is difficult, but the payoff is enormous.

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