Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2009
Joined
·
3,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Didn't really know where to post it, since it's a bit "late bloomer", a bit "education", so I post it somewhere else.

I'm playing the sax for 3 years and a half now. I had a teacher, and I'll see him again in september. I'm starting to learn to read notes, so I can go through the studies a bit faster (struggling with rythm though). I'm picking up theory about chords, scales, etc.

I never had a musical education, but I'm driven by the art and I would like to get a second degree. So I'm thinking about picking up music education at a conservatorium here in Belgium in about five to ten years (I would be 35-40 then).

I know it's not evident, especially since I have to pick up a LOT of knowledge to make it even through the entrance exams. Now there are some questions about this :
1) I'm told that older people (meaning not fresh from highschool) are NOT appreciated in advanced music schools. Is that true?

2) some people see it as a waste of time : I shoud learn it another way, since I won't be able to use that diploma anyway. Your thoughts?

3) Quite some believe it's impossible to learn that much about music at the age of 40. any thought about this?

Your reflections are greatly appreciated.
 

·
The most prolific Distinguished SOTW poster, Forum
Joined
·
27,650 Posts
Great goal, Jolle! And don't let anything I might say hold you back. But to answer specifically...

1) I'm told that older people...are NOT appreciated in advanced music schools. Is that true?
I don't know that that's true, but there are going to be younger players who will smoke you and who will make a point to do so. You have to be ready for that. If you're in a professional program some students and likely faculty members are going to equate your not being more advanced at your age negatively. That is, if you haven't accomplished a lot as a player by the time you're about 26, then you don't show much promise. There will always be others who will respect you for what you are trying to accomplish, as well. Listen to them.

- Along this line but you didn't ask, is that many state conservatories have limited spaces for new students and competition is fierce. The preference is almost always going to go to a youngster because there's a thinking that you've already had your chance and it's not fair to block someone just starting out from admission in your favour.

2) some people see it as a waste of time : I should learn it another way, since I won't be able to use that diploma anyway. Your thoughts?
This is your call. If you want to teach in any kind of official position (city music school, etc) you need that formal document from the school. If your goal is strictly to become a better musician and work in a non-academic situation, no one will ask for your paper. They are only interested in what you can do. Therefore, you can also learn everything you need to learn privately and by hanging out.

- caveat: some people work better in an organised environment like an academic program. Also school has all of this learning concentrated both time-wise and geographically. If you are one of these, then formal study may benefit you more.
-- also, you'll likely learn a lot from other students and make friendships that might benefit you over the years, professionally.
---furthermore, some folks like the diploma both as a goal and as a sign of accomplishment at the successful end of study.

3) Quite some believe it's impossible to learn that much about music at the age of 40. any thought about this?
That's not an issue. You are not 17 and you can only do what you can do. So do it. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
77 Posts
Jolle if you really want you can still get a proffesional musician:)But you must be sure about it,practice alot and join bands,ensembles and other places:)Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
Jolle,

My teacher had been playing sax for 20 years before he went to college to get his music degree. He was around 40 I guess.

The way he tells it he could play better than the college teachers, and all the other students, but needed hard work to keep up with the youngsters on the theory.

So you'd not be too old, and you'd still have time to make proper use of the formal qualification.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
That's great Jolle, I've been thinking in the same direction and I'm a bit older already. But being a single father with two youngsters and a full time job it's already hard to fit in lessons on a regular basis. (No need to go to the next lessons if you haven't had enough practice time because of ??...). So for that I'm now looking for a teacher that can fit me in everytime on short notice.
There is another system in the Netherlands, full education and conservatory degree etc, but you study on some kind of parttime basis.
Maybe there is something like that in Belgium too.

I know you read Dutch :D so here is the link and good luck.
http://www.schumann.nl/home.htm
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
13,044 Posts
The fact that you learned how to play as an adult is an advantage as a teacher. You will have a better recollection of the struggle involved and a recollection of how these problems were overcome.

I am a fairly advanced violin player. I started pretty young and work well with older/ more advanced students. Younger students are a problem since I have very little recollection of the early stages of learning.
I came to sax later in life and am much more competent to teach beginners the sax because I remember the technical issues beginners face. It is still in my head what the process was and what the big issues were. Younger cats are more interested in results and don't care about the process, but the process is the way to results.
 

·
The most prolific Distinguished SOTW poster, Forum
Joined
·
27,650 Posts
Grumpie said:
There is another system in the Netherlands, full education and conservatory degree etc, but you study on some kind of parttime basis.
Maybe there is something like that in Belgium too.
But I think there are age limits to that. You need to check specifically.

Also if you are just reading the information (ie not talking directly to someone at the conservatory) make sure you don't get the part-time learning program for adults confused with advanced, follow-up training (ie master classes, etc) for those older musicians who already have their conservatory diplomas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
@ Gary; There is no age limit there, the average age comes to 35 according to the website.

Maybe parttime was not the correct translation but at the end you have done the full works. It's a combination with e-learning and personal contact and the programm needs to fit the official rules because in the end your diploma is the same as from a study at a conservatory.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top