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Is it necessary to have a M.M.?...


Vivezza
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Cedar,

Maybe it is just that different school districts offer more of a variety of subjects. I happen to live in one that has a big tax basis and spends a lot of money per pupil. When I was in high school I don't think we had any AP couurses. Of course I went to a small school and it was a long time ago.

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My son's favorite class in high school is music theory. He loves the teacher which I guess makes it better. Fortunately he will have the same teacher for AP music theory next year. I also bought him the academic version of Finale 2002 (which is what the use at school) to use at home. He thinks perhaps he might like to teach music theory someday.

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quote:

Originally posted by HuangKaiVun:

Nowadays, the jazz training has shaped my musicianship so drastically that I consider myself a jazz player who plays classical violin.

Do you also play jazz violin? I think there could be a lot of career possibilities for a violinist who is equally adept at classical and jazz. The time is ripe right now.

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Yes I play jazz violin.

My jazz guitar is still developing, but my jazz violin is just about all the way there.

The thing is that I don't have much of an interest in jazz violin. The harmonic capabilities are so limited compared to the classical violin literature or the jazz guitar.

When I want to, I can cop a Stephane Grappelli or Joe Venuti imitation. But I don't do much imitating nowadays because I am ME.

I've always resisted being a jazz violinist and always will.

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By the way, the main problem with the first year of college, I find, is the sheer lack of sleep. Part of the problem is time management, but I can quickly reach the point, depending on how much reading I want to do, where every minute spent in one activity is sacrificing time for another. In order to minimize the sacrifice, I go to bed at 2 am. I managed to get straight A's my first semester, but I did not have many good performances.

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Also, the difficulty with college for me was discovering that I could write papers at the last minute and be in the top 5 students in tough Honors classes (although I suspect most of the other people also wrote their papers hastily), whereas, I could practice for days and still have bad lessons.

But what my best friend (another violinist here) and I have found is, college pressure forces you to form effective practice habits---or die.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm a junior in high school, but I plan to major in violin performance when I graduate. This is really about Theory. I'm old enough to take classes at the junior colleges now, so I'm taking Theory (I got in an "A" in Theory one and now I'm in Theory two.) Everybody I've talked to that's been a music major has told me I'm doing the best thing possible to help myself get through those first semesters of college. I'm also taking applied piano so that I will be able to pass a piano proficiency exam. If possible TAKE THEORY!!!!!! smile.gif

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quote:

Originally posted by HuangKaiVun:

I didn't see "new stuff" until my 2nd year of college.

This will be extremely college-dependent.

I went to an Ivy League university; it was common for students to have taken as many APs as their schools had available, and IB (International Baccalaureate) was also pretty common. They told you to take the freshman section of those basic classes anyway, even if you got a 5 on the AP exam -- and any credit you got for APs would normally be given in the form of a "lesser" class (i.e., one that was totally useless for your major or distribution requirements).

The material was covered with a great deal more depth and thoroughness, with a very strong theoretical emphasis -- vastly beyond what the AP courses had.

i.e., don't count on your APs to get you out of having to take things, if you pick a top-notch school.

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Absolutely correct, lwl.

My brother went to Harvard, and his APs were absolutely useless.

Most of the people there had far more academic background than him going in, and he was a top student unlike ME.

In any case, it's DIFFERENT in real life. Having a great pedigree is terrific, but not having one won't stop you from being the best you can be.

At least it is this way for professional musicians - and Bill Gates.

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  • 5 weeks later...

I know this has nothing to do with degrees, but what is the difference between honors and AP courses? just wondering.

I'm jelous of all the music theory classes everyone has/had in high school. As a class my school offers only one term of music theory 1/3 of a credit. Now I'm in my second term of independent music theory and if I stay at my high school that's all i'm going to get. No AP theory here. wink.gif

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Degrees only matter in two areas. If you plan to teach. BA for High School level or lower, MA to PHD for college/conservatory level. THe other place it may matter is on your resume' in tying to get auditions with major orchestras - and here, the right experience, who you studied with, and going to the right school is more important than the actual degree. If you ever attempt to jump out of muisc it then becomes important again because it shows a propective employer that you can stick to a task and complete it (like learning to play the violin doesn't do this - but you will be dealing with musical heathens at this point!).

For freelancing - all that matters is how well you play and how reliable you are. Always show up, always be on time, always have a pencil and a stand in your car, play well, don't get lost, and you'll be fine.

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AP is (supposed to be) college-level work, so there's more critical thinking involved. Honors = more homework, AP = more reading and essays (if applicable). AP courses are meant to prepare you for exams administered around the world by the College Board at the end of the year. An AP test consists of a multiple choice section an hour and a half long (about 60 hard questions) and a free response section another hour and a half long. They calculate your overall score on a scale from 1-5 (5 is the highest) based on the MC, the free-response, and everyone else's performance (to some extent). Most schools give you credit for a 4 or 5. Some will take a 3. None will accept a 1 or 2.

AP Music Theory helps your GPA, but I don't know of any music school that will take an AP score for credit. Here, they make you take a placement test and place you in the appropriate level theory class.

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I have a question.

Last year, my junior year in high school, I took AP Music Theory and got a 5 on the exam. This year, my senior year, I'm taking all my classes at Georgia State University in Atlanta. They have an accredited music school, so I decided to take some more theory. They made me take a placement test, and, lo and behold, I placed into Theory 3 (meaning 3rd semester). I'm now completing Theory 4 in which we're going all the way through the 1950s.

Does anyone think that a major conservatory (NEC or CIM) will let me test out of all theory? I've spoken with kids at CIM who are in the equivalent theory course there that I am in here, and they're lightyears behind us. I reeeeeeally don't want to have to sit through another two years of theory...even if it will be "easy."

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Just a follow-on question to these interesting posts :

Did many (or any) of the great virtuosi of the past century possess academic degrees? I realize that many studied at various conservatories and with individual maestros, but did any actually bother with all the rigamarole of fullfilling credits, lecture hours, theses, etc.

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Cremona, you should be able to get transfer credit or place out, though I'm not sure how insistent CIM is about doing theory their way.

Credit hours probably weren't a concern back then. I imagine the course of study was pretty fixed: lessons, basic harmony and counterpoint, solfegge, etc. At Peabody, everything's pretty much prescribed and sequential, except which general and music electives you take (you have to fill a number of credit hours). The Moscow State Conservatory has a structured program of study for violin. Students with bad postural/technical habits are exempt from orchestra until they iron out the kinks.

The old guys probably just went where the great teachers were, conservatory or not. I think Vieuxtemps, Wieniawski, Sarasate, Thibaud, Oistrakh, and Ysaye were conservatory products. I doubt they had much academic training.

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