This is a post from double bassist from Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music student Nicholas Hart. Nick will be contributing weekly posts to the bass blog about life as a music student in one of the nation’s most exclusive programs. I think readers will find this different perspective on the double bass world and the music world in general to be quite interesting, and I am looking forward to reading these posts. You will be able to read all of Nick’s contributions under the articles link in the menubar or in the sidebar under contributors. Enjoy!
There are many questions that went through my head before deciding to attend a conservatory this year, far too many at that. Am I good enough? What do I do if I don’t get into my first choice school? How do I pay for these schools? Am I talented enough? These are probably some of the toughest questions you’ll ever have to answer at this point in your life if you’re trying to become a professional bassist. These are questions that I am still thinking of and will hopefully be answered as I mature throughout my college years, and will try to answer here on my weekly posts on Jason’s blog.
The hardships facing an incoming freshman at a conservatory can fill a book. The biggest probably being how to pay for an education that rarely applies to anything but music. Jason has covered this topic many times and I, after only one year of college, am already in thousands of dollars in debt. This debt leads me to another question – Is it worth it? I say absolutely.
This year, I have learned that music is one of the most powerful art forms, and participation in creating music is incredibly powerful. To have the opportunity to look inside the emotions and thoughts of the composer, interpret them, make them your own, and portray them to the audience is one of the most moving and rewarding parts of my life.
I have also learned that talent is not what it takes to make it in the music world – loving what you do and hard work is. This is something that took me a long time to get through. I do not come from a musical family, but rather a typical blue collar family and my first couple of months here in
My hardest adjustment in coming to a conservatory is simply being in a conservatory. I am surrounded by music every minute of the day. Whether it is my neighbors singing in the dorms, being in the practice rooms, sitting in class, or being in rehearsals I am living in music, and it can be rough on a person. It can become very monotonous if you don’t experience different things. Being in a conservatory that is affiliated with a university is what I feel has really helped my love for music grow and helped me improve as much as I have. Hanging out with business, engineering, and psychology majors and going into a different world is something that every musician needs on occasion. Practicing is such a big part of our lives, and unfortunately practicing is very solitary but we need time away from our instrument. Music is my life, but can I every truly be a great musician if I don’t experience everything that the world has to offer?
On my next post, I’m going to talk about my first mock audition, which is this week, and talk about some specifics on the way lessons and learning music is different in college than in previous experiences.
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