New Student Guide to the
Stanford University Department of Music

 

Welcome to Stanford!

During your time here we hope that you will continue with your musical studies and activities, and to help you do just that we offer many ways in which you can participate in music at Stanford. What follows is information about a variety of things in which you might be interested:

Major Requirements and Core Courses

Ensembles

Auditions for Lessons and Ensembles

Lockers

Practice Rooms

Lesson Scholarships

Music Ambassadors

Here are some of our current music students, both majors and non-majors, with whom you can connect to get a sense of life in the department from a student perspective:

Major Requirements and Core Courses

If you are interested in possibly majoring in music, consider starting the Music Theory core (Music 21, 22, and 23) in either Fall or Winter quarters of your freshman year. There is a diagnostic test for entrance into Music 21 on the first day of the term that will help you determine if you should begin with Music 21 or Music 19. Check Axess for details on when and where Music 21 meets, and attend the first class to take the diagnostic.

Prospective majors should also know that the Piano Proficiency Test is required of all students who take the theory core. (You will need a SUNet ID and password to access this document.) If you’re an experienced pianist, you shouldn’t have any trouble passing; if not, plan to take some level of group piano (Music 12A, B, or C) to get those chops ready for the exam.

We have several Freshman IntroSems on offer this year. Taking an IntroSem is a great way to get into a topic in a deep way, without committing to a major yet. Take a look at Music IntroSems for the year and see if anything sounds intriguing.

Come and talk with Elise Fujimoto (Undergraduate Student Services Officer) in the main office if you want to know more about majoring or minoring. Freshman year is not too early to start thinking about and exploring possible majors!

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Ensembles

Our departmental ensembles are open to students by audition. Find out more about our ensembles and how to audition for them here.

You also might be interested in the chamber music program, jazz combos, Stanford Improvisation Collective [sic], and other performing opportunities; check the Music offerings in “Explore Courses” for more info.

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Auditions for Lessons and Ensembles

At the start of each school year, we hold auditions for all ensembles, chamber groups, and combos, as well as private lessons. Signups are now open for lesson and ensemble auditions. Please review the audition information here. If you have general questions, come by the main office in Braun Music Center, Room 101 (open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.–12 noon and 1–4 p.m.).

If you're not sure at what level we expect you to be to take private lessons, look at the Minimum Proficiency Requirements, but remember that the pieces and exercises listed are not what you’re expected to play for an audition, but are just to give you a sense of the ability level at which we think you should be playing.

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Lockers

Lockers of varying sizes are available for academic-year rental (Autumn-Spring), at the end of which they must be cleared out. Lockers may be available by special arrangement in summer for students who are actively enrolled during that period. Larger instrument lockers are in shorter supply, requiring music majors and ensemble members to have priority. Private locks may not be used (and will be cut off).

Lockers are for storage of musical instruments and associated items only. Storage of non-music items is prohibited. Violation of this policy will result in the loss of locker and forfeiture of fees. Items are stored at your own risk; the department is not responsible for lost or stolen items. Contents of uncleared lockers, instruments excepted, will be disposed of.

Lockers fees are $10 for small instruments and $20 for large instruments. You will be assigned an appropriate size locker for your instrument after your fee has been paid.

Fees are billed to student accounts in the quarter you sign up. Those without student accounts must pay by cash or check at Braun Music Center Rm. 101 (see Ardis Walling).

You can sign up for a locker at any time here.

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Practice Rooms

Practice rooms are available on a first come first served basis during posted building hours and are for the exclusive use of registered Stanford students, currently employed staff and faculty, and members of the University community with SUID cards (family members without SUID are not eligible).

Terms and Fees

Rules Governing Use Of Practice Rooms

You can sign up for a practice room at any time here.

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Scholarships for Lessons

Private lessons carry an additional cost over Stanford tuition; however, the Friends of Music at Stanford, a community-based fundraising organization for the Department of Music, have made funds available to help students with that cost. Their philosophies are that financial concerns should never prevent a student from taking lessons, and that all students who apply for financial assistance for lessons should receive at least some support. Students enrolled in private lessons with our faculty and who are in need of financial assistance can apply for scholarships each term. Find out more here.

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