- State: West Virginia
- State School (public)
- School Website
Andrew Kohn, bass faculty
- US News Ranking: #183 (tie) in National Universities
- US News Overall Score (out of 100): 31
- In-State Tuition & Fees 2016-17: $7,632
- Out-of-State Tuition & Fees 2016-17: $21,432
- Room & Board 2016-17: $9,872
- Total Enrollment: 28,776
- Acceptance Rate (from 2015): 86%
- Student – Faculty Ratio: 21:1
- 4 year graduation rate: 33%
- % of undergrads receiving Financial aid: 55%
- Average Financial Aid: $4,790
Double Bass Statistics
- Average number of undergraduate bass students: 7
- Average number of graduate bass students: 1
- Studio Class, Bass Ensembles, chamber music, bluegrass ensemble
What Alumni Are Doing
- Teaching at Illinois Wesleyan
- Fund-raising for a non-profit
- Transporting and installing art for major collections
- Teaching in public schools in WV, VA, MD.
Perspectives from Students and Alumni
Q: What are some favorite memories about studying at this school?
A: Being at a large school while having the feeling of being in a tightly knit music school.
A: Some of my favorite aspects of studying at this school include playing in the orchestra and the bluegrass band. Both of these ensembles immensely helped the growth of my musicianship. In addition to the typical concerts, I had the opportunity to tour with both of these ensembles. These tours were incredibly rewarding experiences, both musically and because of the friendships that were created and cemented during them. I was lucky enough to have performed for thousands of audience members in West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia, and Texas.
A: The size of the program was perfect for me. Large enough for a versatile student orchestra but small enough for great one-on-one support from teachers and master’s students. I loved performing my Junior and Senior recitals with pianists pursuing their advanced degrees at WVU. They were extremely talented and helped raise my musicianship and confidence. I seriously enjoyed my lessons with Dr. Kohn and would recommend him to any advanced or non-advanced bassist interested in learning more.
A: I really appreciated the bass studio and the orchestra experience in addition to my private study with Andrew Kohn.
A: The incredible performance opportunities that I was given both as a soloist and as a member of many different ensembles provided me with some of my greatest musical memories from my time at WVU. Additionally, the opportunity to work closely with so many members of the music faculty and learn first hand from each of them was an unbelievably valuable experience. As a bass player, studying with Dr. Andrew Kohn and having the opportunity to learn from his vast knowledge and experience made each lesson with him memorable. Beyond the musical memories, studying at WVU gave me the opportunity to make friendships that will last a lifetime and make connections that I would have never have had the opportunity to make otherwise.
Q: How did this school help prepare you for your future endeavors?
A: Excellent instruction through private lessons, music history, and theory.
A: With a multitude of teachers with high expectations, it was nearly impossible to not develop my musicianship to the highest level possibility, which ultimately prepared me for my teaching career. All of my teachers in the music education department had extremely high standards and expected all students to meet them. Each teacher took the time to personally get to know each student, to understand their strengths and weaknesses, and to help each student grow into the best music educator possible. Professors had high expectations and demanded exceptional work, but were never harsh and were always encouraging with feedback and constructive criticism. I hear from many teachers that their first year of teaching is the most difficult. My studies at West Virginia University provided me with the necessary skills to have a successful first year of teaching.
A: WVU had various degrees that allowed me to explore my interests. In the end, I was able to add a minor of Arts Administration which led me to a fundraising career first in the arts, then generally in nonprofit organizations. My liberal arts degree (B.A. in Music, Minor in Arts Administration) has helped me to be a well rounded individual able to hold conversations with donors, prospects, leaders, etc. with a variety of interests and exposures to life.
A: I received training in large ensemble, chamber groups, solo performance and the music history track helped improve my writing and communication skills.
A: The education that I received from WVU prepared me for my profession as a music educator through the opportunities that I was given to learn from some of the top educators in the field and develop my craft through their guidance. The music faculty at WVU brings an outstanding amount of knowledge, professionalism, and experience to each lesson, giving each student the tools to grow and succeed. The opportunity to teach under the guidance of each member of the music education faculty gave me a number of different valuable perspectives from masters in the field. Studying privately with Dr. Kohn gave me opportunity to grow immensely as a performer and musician, and his vast knowledge of bass pedagogy prepared me to teach and perform in any setting.
Q: What advice would you offer others thinking about studying at this school?
A: Visit the school of music and make sure you check out both campuses. You get a lot of variety!
A: I had a plethora of teachers at WVU that were essential figures in my musical development, in particular my bass teacher, Dr. Andrew Kohn, was incredibly supportive of my growth as a bassist and musician. He provided a wealth of material, not necessarily standard repertoire, but material that was always musically interesting and technically challenging. Such obscure pieces include, but are not limited to, Desenclos’ Aria and Rondo, the Poradowski Concerto, and the Levitin’s Sonata for Unaccompanied Double Bass. One will not find a more well-rounded teacher that is compassionate about all of his students, is an incredibly talented bassist, as well as musician, and has an encyclopedic knowledge of all things pertaining to bass.
A: Make sure you feel confident in the instrumental teacher with whom you will be studying, and in any program or school make sure you are prepared to fully engage in what any school has to offer. Join one of the volunteer clubs, support your fellow students (especially important) by attending recitals, listening to practice sessions, and studying together, and take time to get to know both your professors and student colleagues better.
A: The music school is a small school feel within a larger university setting. You get the best of both worlds.
A: Studying at WVU is an incredible opportunity for any music student. The opportunities that are provided through the School of Music and the university as a whole give each student the opportunity to grow and reach their full potential as a musician.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to share about this school?
A: Andrew Kohn is an incredible teacher and performer. He has an exceptionally deep knowledge about the standard repertoire but was able to supplement this with repertoire that allowed me to grow as a musician.
A: WVU offers such a wide variety of ensembles that are open to all students willing to enroll in them. In addition to the traditional outlets of orchestra and chamber groups, there are exceptional jazz and world music programs. The jazz program has big bands, but is also very flexible in allowing students to create unique combos of any instrumentation. The world music program has bluegrass bands, gamelan ensembles, African ensembles, and Brazilian ensembles. All of these ensembles are welcoming to members of all abilities and provide students with plenty of opportunity to develop their musical abilities and musical experiences as a whole. Participation in one of these ensembles may very well open up one to a new musical passion to be fostered for the remainder of one’s life.
A: My private study with Andrew Kohn was deeply influential on my development as a performer and teacher. The depth of his knowledge of literature both well and less known helped get me out of my comfort zone and grow. I am deeply indebted to both Andrew Kohn and West Virginia University School of Music.
Trevor J, Alex T, Rebecca B, Stephen K
Perspectives from the Bass Faculty
Q: What are some of your favorite experiences teaching at your school?
A: Performing concerti; hearing my own compositions performed; teaching advanced theory seminars. Our studio welcomes non-majors.
About The Bass Faculty
Andrew Kohn, the son of a chemist and a mathematician, spent his childhood in Oak Ridge, an outpost of high culture and intellectualism in rural Tennessee. Surrounded by transplanted scientists and amateur musicians, he grew up thinking of music and the life of the mind as traditions from other places that had to be studied and nurtured afresh. His work often explores areas either long-lost or newly-discovered. This is reflected in his concert repertoire, recordings, and many publications. He studied with Theron McClure, Barry Green, Eldon Obrecht, and Eugene Levinson, and teaches bass and music theory at West Virginia University. He also composes, especially vocal and chamber pieces.
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