I would like to study a BA in music, though i’m not grade eight, does this matter?

Gojira masterclass subtitled. As many people seems lost with French on the original video, I did my best to add some subtitles. Sorry for the mistakes, English is not my native language, but I’ll update the sub when my English get improved 😉

I have been playing violin for 5/6 years and i am technically grade four, though i play grade six piece and i am doing my grade five exam this term. I am in year 11 so i have 2 and half years left until uni (unless i take a gap year). I would want to study the composing element of music, or jazz(maybe). I am getting full marks in my composition and i am currently predicted an a* over all- though my performance is lacking. I have started grade 2 jazz piano- i can get to grade five in 2/3 years if i work hard. I also play guitar(i got to grade 4 in 3 lessons though i had to stop), flute, bass guitar and i sing. I so desperately want to study music at university. Will i get in and what universities are best?
Thank you! 😀


  1. Sarah says:

    Your getting way ahead of yourself. Finish your GCSE’s first before you start thinking about uni. Lots of things can change in 2 1/2 years. If your serious about music then you need to study this at college and get high grades to stand a good chance of getting into uni. Look on the university websites to see what courses you could do and the grade requirements. You currently play 5 instruments, not including singing. Colleges and universities prefer that you play 2 or 3 instruments to a very high standard than 5 at a lower standard, as it shows where your real talent and commitments lie.

  2. ClassicalMusicEducation.com says:

    Hello Alice,
    Good for you about your accomplishments in music so far. Sarah’s advice is quite good. However, you might not be getting too far ahead of yourself. Studying music to become a professional is a big deal and most of us professional musicians have been studying hard since we were quite young.

    It’s great that you already have musical goals. To follow up, I’d recommend that you get clearer about what you would like to do in music. The more specific you are the better. Then you can begin talking to professionals in those specific areas and get advice from them about what you should do and what your chances are. Take lessons with these people if you can.

    As for your ability, quality is the most important thing that you should focus on, not quantity. Sarah is very right in saying ‘Colleges and universities prefer that you play 2 or 3 instruments to a very high standard than 5 at a lower standard, as it shows where your real talent and commitments lie’. Make sure your technical and musical abilities on your 1-2 (maybe 3) instruments are very high and clean. Competition is fierce in the music world and your abilities (as well as luck) will heavily influence your career.

    I recently wrote an article about becoming a Classical musician. Though it seems you may be more interested in jazz, some of the things I mention are general enough that they should be helpful for you. You can read the blog post here: http://classicalmusiceducation.com/2011/12/to-be-or-not-to-be/

    In any case, I wish you all the best in your musical endeavours.

    Best Regards,
    K. Lendi

  3. Defy Gravity With Me Please (: says:

    I’m in the process of auditions and interviews for conservatoires and universities (BMus’s).

    The most recent exam on my flute I did was grade 7, however your grade number is not a reflection on how well you can play. I’ve done post-grade 8 pieces in concert band, and did one for my Royal College of Music audition (‘Fantasie’ by Gabriel Faure, utter HELL!). To be honest, I play these rather well.

    By the sounds of things, you’ll be able to get to grade 8+ STANDARD by the time you will be auditioning. Just practice, practice, practice. Even if you don’t take the official grade 8 exam, don’t worry! They’re looking at you as a musician, not a document.

    Good luck for your future, hope you carry on with the musical ambitions! x