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Questions on interviews for MM-Composition programs

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Acually I got an interview invitation from one university yesterday (MM-Composition), but I had no idea how to prepare for the interviews over about month and a half remaining, believing that musical composition should be such a broad area and there must be lots of things to cover...At this time I'm going to prepare for questions on

1) My favorite composers and their representative works and musical styles

2) Principles of orchestration

3) Previously taken coursework about musical composition and theory

4) Why and how I began learning composition

5) Previously attended composition recitals, masterclasses, guest lectures, etc

6) How I have developed my musical language

7) Score identification

8) Music theory (mostly tonal harmony)

9) Ear training (mostly tonal harmony and melody)

10) Plans during the program and after graduation

11) Particular reasons for applying that university

Do you think that preparing for the above should be enough? If not, could you recommend anything else to prepare you believe to be important but not listed above? Also, could you let me know which university is heavily testing on which part based on your previous interview experiences?

Additionally, could you let me know what universities have specific exams on music history or theory as parts of their auditions? For those without such exams, do they mostly ask some questions on music theory during the interviews?

THX-Edward

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Exams won't be until after you get accepted. Interviews are subjective so I wouldn't be to pressed about that. Look up my topics: Maestrowick Presents.

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A friend of mine didn't get accepted because he had vaque ideas about his life after college. He was vaque about his goals. What kind of profession he was persuing. So I recommend spending some time thinking about that.

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Actually some of your questions are good and Maestor offers some good advice as well as Gijs. What it boils down to is -

1) Why the heck would you blow a ton of money on a MA in Composition? TO be a good composer? Well, you don't need a MA or PhD to become a good (or even great sometimes) composer. There are a ton of degreed composers music theorists and pianist who would love to have such a serious student as one of their students.

Is it for teaching? Is there a particular area of research you want to do?

In sum, what they want to know is a) you are serious about doing the work and b) what you'd like to do with the degree - or that you have potential for being an alum who would attract more students = more money = more potenial alums to build the endowment. Yes, money and reputation on their side is a consideration.

2) Are you articulate and knowledgeable about music? In other words can you say who your influences are, what books you have read, which composers you admire and why - all convincingly and with an idea of what you are talking about? So, saying you love Ligeti and Ramifications and Aventures for the "clouds" of sound he creates is not saying much more than what you could get from liner notes or Wikipedia. You would have to say, well I love how thru scordatura (having one se tof strings a quarter tone off) in Ramifications he creates micropolyphony by the various microtones created thru heterophonic treatment between the string groups of material made up of stepwise motion and small intervals. In one sentence you have shown you like Ligeti enough to review the score, understand what scordatua is, heterophony, microtones and the instrumentation of the work.

Thats it.

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