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Anonymous asked: How connected are the college and conservatory? I'm thinking about auditioning for the con and applying to the college to do a double major but i've heard that's an absolutely crazy decision full of intensely hard work and not a single free second in my life. If i was to just apply to the college would I have a good amount of conservatory opportunities?

The short answer is that they are very connected. In applying to the college and conservatory, there are two application processes (and if accepted to both, you would be a double degree student… some of the most intense and incredible people I had the pleasure of knowing at Oberlin were double degree students; they were definitely busy but were amazing at scheduling) but once you are on campus, much of what’s happening here is fully integrated. College and conservatory students live together, dine together, and most importantly for your question, take classes together. (Sidenote: shoot me an email at maayan.plaut[AT]oberlin.edu if you want to chat with a double degree student or alum; I can connect you.)

As a conservatory student, there are a specific number of liberal art credits you must take through the college to graduate with your degree. As a college student, you are eligible to take most any course in the conservatory (though there may be some auditions or pre-requisite requirements you must complete first). If you’re considering doing music within the college, you could consider the Musical Studies major, which is a collaborative department in the college and con which results in a bachelors of arts degree (contrasting to the bachelors of music and bachelors of arts degree you would receive as a double degree graduate).

When it comes to outside opportunities beyond courses, any conservatory ensemble and private lessons are audition based. Depending on your skill level, you can take private lessons (ranging from an upperclass student to a professor) or participate in any of the specialized string, brass, wind, or voice ensembles or the orchestra.

In short, by not enrolling in the conservatory you are not cutting yourself off from continuing to pursue music. One of the top reasons I chose Oberlin was that musical culture was completely ingrained into life here, from the casual to the extremely serious, and that was a magical magical thing.

- Ma’ayan Plaut ‘10, Social Media Coordinator

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The opportunity to study performance and classics intensively side-by-side led me to make all sorts of connections across disciplines that have a profound effect not only my research interests, but also on the way I perform and think about music.
Danny Walden ‘12, on Oberlin’s double-degree program preparing him for his continued study at Cambridge as a Gates Scholar next year.

Filed under oberlin oberlin college oberlin conservatory oberlin conservatory of music music double degree gates scholar student danny walden '12 performance classics