How do I arrange a tour of the Conservatory?
Information about arranging a tour of the conservatory or the college can be found on our Visit the Conservatory page.
Conservatory Office location
The conservatory admissions office is located in the Blum Music Building, within the Avery Center for the Arts complex on 59 Blithewood Road. (You can also find us by looking for the Edith C. Blum Institute on this campus map.)
Do I need a studio-quality prescreening recording?
No. A home-quality audio recorder will be sufficient, as will any home-quality digital camcorder for video submissions.
Do I need an accompanist for my prescreening recording?
With the obvious exception of works for solo instrument (e.g. Bach Partita, Kopprasch etude), repertoire for the prescreening submission should be accompanied but it is not required. In addition, appropriate chamber music works may be used as the "work of your choice."
Composers should submit recordings of live performances of their works whenever possible, in place of MIDI realizations.
What is the policy on taking trial lessons?
Prospective students sometimes wish to arrange lessons with Conservatory faculty as part of the process of deciding where to apply. This is a good idea, and the members of our roster are happy to try to make such arrangements if their schedule allows. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for faculty contact information.
The conservatory admissions staff can help facilitate this but, until a student has actually been admitted to the Conservatory, such arrangements have to be made directly between the student and the faculty member, both with respect to scheduling and with respect to payment.
After a student has been admitted, the Conservatory will cover the cost of one trial lesson. The Conservatory admissions office can play a role in setting up trial lessons as requested, depending upon the schedules of the teachers.
What are the acceptable media types when I am uploading my recordings to the application?
The application accepts the following file types for uploading of recordings and documents:
Although we technically support media files as large as 5 GB, please be advised that larger files will take longer to upload from your Internet connection and may stall if you are on a wireless connection or one that cannot sustain a connection for the necessary period of time. Uploaded documents may contain no more than 75 pages. We support the following file formats:
Video: .avi, .flv, .m1v, .m2v, .m4v, .mkv, .mov, .mpeg, .mpg, .mp4, .webm, .wmv
Audio: .aac, .aif, .aiff, .iff, .fla, .m4a, .mpa, .mp3, .ra, .wav, .wma
Document: .doc, .docx, .odg, .odp, .odt, .pdf, .ppt, .pptx, .rtf, .wpd
When are my prescreening materials (recordings and/or scores for composition applicants) due?
All prescreening materials–recordings, scores, resumes–are due on the application deadline for the program you are applying to.
Is it possible to contact one of Bard Conservatory's instrumental teachers directly?
It is certainly possible! If you wish to email a Conservatory instrumental teacher please email email@example.com. Please include the name of the faculty member you wish you to contact and a brief musical resume or biography so that we can make an introduction between you and the teacher.
Does the Conservatory award merit scholarships?
Conservatory applicants are eligible for merit-based financial aid. Competitive merit awards--up to and including the full-tuition--are based on the strength of the audition and the applicant's overall musical achievement and promise.
We ask all students - even students who are applying only for merit-based aid - to submit the required financial aid forms.
Conservatory applicants are also considered for additional merit- and need-based aid administered by Bard College. The FAFSA and CSS Profile are used to determine financial need and are required in all cases in which financial aid of any kind is awarded. Visit our Financial Aid page for additional information.
All financial aid is awarded for five years.
Where and how often are private lessons taught?
Regular weekly lessons are critically important to the education of the young musician. The vast majority of lessons are taught weekly on the Bard campus. When a teacher's performing schedule does not allow them to come to campus, students will occasionally be taught either by someone else on the faculty roster or the conservatory will send the student into New York City for their regular weekly lesson.
What are you looking for in a musical resume?
A music resume should be a clear and succinct summary of your musical life so far. It is common for people to include their current teacher as well as any teachers they have studied with in the past and anyone they've played for in a masterclass. These can be instrumental instructors or any music theory or history instructors.
It's also good to include ensembles you play in or have played in (orchestras, chamber groups, etc.). Include any schools you have attended or any summer festivals or camps. Include dates for ensembles and festivals attended. The general month and year is fine (July, 2015 or Fall 2016). If you have space, it may be beneficial to include a repertoire list.
It is not important to include everything you've ever done. You should highlight the things you think are important and the things you want people to know about you.
Typically, resumes should fit on one page. It is Ok to rearrange the margins of your document to accommodate this.
What is the US-China Music Institute?
The Bard Conservatory and its US-China Music Institute, in partnership with the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, offers an undergraduate performance degree program in selected Chinese instruments. This program builds on Bard’s existing five-year music and liberal arts and sciences degree program to combine the professional study of traditional Chinese instruments with western- style liberal arts education. Students will earn two degrees, graduating with a Bachelor of Music, majoring in the performance of a Chinese instrument, and a Bachelor of Arts in a field other than music.
How are students assigned to teacher's studios?
The assignment of teachers is based on the current status of a teachers’ studio, the preferences of the students and the teachers, and the judgment of the Director of the Conservatory. Every attempt is made to announce these assignments as students are admitted, but in some cases this is not possible. All studio assignments are made by the Director of the Conservatory in close consultation with the faculty.
When are prescreening results released?
All applicants will receive notification two weeks after the application due date. If you have not heard from the Conservatory by that time, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (845) 752-2409.
Do you teach guitar, jazz, or organ?
Jazz studies, and instruments such as guitar, organ and saxophone are offered through the the College's regular four-year Music Program and not through the Conservatory.
What is the difference between the Conservatory and the Bard College Music Program?
Bard College employs two academic units for the teaching of music: an undergraduate, liberal arts Music Program, and the Conservatory of Music.
Students accepted into the five-year Conservatory program work toward two bachelor degrees: a B.M. in performance or composition, and a B.A. in a non-music subject. In contrast, a student majoring in music in the Music Program may choose to double major in some other subject, but ultimately earns only one four-year Bachelor of Arts degree.
The study of music in the Conservatory includes the classical study of orchestral instruments, voice, composition, piano, and traditional Chinese instruments. Music majors in the Music Program can study jazz, electronic and experimental music, music theory and history, ethnomusicology, composition, as well as classical performance. They can also study other instruments such as saxophone, guitar (electric and acoustic), and world instruments.
All music facilities (practice rooms, performance spaces, classrooms) are open to all Bard students regardless of their major or program. Also, all classes and ensembles are open to all Bard students as long as they meet any prerequisites for the class or pass the audition for the ensemble. Some faculty members teach in both the Conservatory and the Music Program.
Is it possible to study in the Conservatory but not the College?
The double degree is a requirement for all undergraduate students in the Conservatory. While it is possible to attend Bard College after being denied admission to the Conservatory, it is not possible for undergraduates to attend the Bard Conservatory without concurrent enrollment in Bard College's full liberal arts curriculum.
If I am applying to the Conservatory may I submit my college application through the Early Action or Immediate Decision plans?
Bard College offers many options for how one may apply; Regular Decision, Early Action, Early Decision, Immediate Decision, and the Bard Entrance Exam. Complete information on all College application types can be found on the Bard College website. We recommend that Conservatory applicants apply to the college using the Regular Decision option only because the timeline for this application lines up best with the conservatory application timeline. There is no advantage or penalty for how one chooses to apply to the college.
Because of our prescreening and audition timeline, the conservatory does not offer any early or immediate application options. All conservatory applications are reviewed after the January 1 submission deadline.
Are private lessons available to non-Conservatory students?
The liberal arts Music Program and Conservatory program have two separate faculty rosters. Only under special circumstances are non-Conservatory students able to take lessons with Conservatory faculty.
More information on Bard College's Music Department can be found here: music.bard.edu/
Can Conservatory students study abroad?
Conservatory students are welcome to enroll in any study abroad program offered by Bard College. Many use this opportunity to fulfill requirements for the BA degree. To date, conservatory students have studied in Israel, Germany, China, France, Hungary, Italy, Korea, Russia, and in New York City with the Bard Globalization and International Affairs Program.
In many cases students are able to continue their musical studies while abroad: for example, two conservatory students studying at Central European University in Budapest enrolled concurrently at the Franz Liszt Academy.
Complete information on Studying Globally can be found here: www.bard.edu/globalstudy
What do your students do after graduation?
Since its inception, undergraduate students of the Bard Conservatory have distinguished themselves through:
Graduate School Acceptances: Music Performance
The Colburn School
The Curtis Institute of Music
The Juilliard School
Manhattan School of Music
Mannes College The New School for Music
New England Conservatory
SUNY Stony Brook
University of Michigan
University of Southern California
Yale School of Music
Other Graduate and Professional School Acceptances
California Institute of Technology
Johns Hopkins University
University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Los Angeles
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine
Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea - Global M.B.A. Program
Music Festival Acceptances
Aspen Music Festival and School
Atlantic Music Festival
Banff Summer Arts Festival
Bowdoin International Music Festival
Colorado Music Festival
European American Musical Alliance Summer Composition Program
Kent/Blossom Music and Arts Festival
Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival
Manchester Music Festival
Music Academy of the West Summer Festival
New York String Orchestra Seminar
Pacific Rim Music Festival
Pierre Monteux School Quartet Program
Round Top Festival Institute
Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival
Steans Music Institute at the Ravinia Festival
Tanglewood Music Center
West-Eastern Divan Orchestra
Yellow Barn Music School and Festival
Competitions and Jobs
Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra Young Artist’s Competition, first prize, 2011
Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, silver medal, 2010
Houston Symphony, associate principal second violin
Michael Hill International Violin Competition, finalist, 2011
Winner, Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions
Winner, Astral Artists National Auditions
Joy of Singing, Debut Artist Award Winner
Prize winners at the Palm Beach Opera Vocal Competition
Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program for Singers
Los Angeles Opera Domingo-Thornton Young Artist Program
Merola Opera Program at the San Francisco Opera
Utah Opera Apprentice Artists Program
Appearances with the American Symphony Orchestra, Portland Baroque Orchestra, Cincinnati May Festival, Peter Brook’s production of Mozart’s Magic Flute, and Bard SummerScape
Acceptances to graduate programs at The Juilliard School - Artist Diploma in Opera Studies, Curtis Institute of Music, and New England Conservatory, among others.
Summer festival attendance at the Aldeburugh Festival’s Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme, Aspen Music Festival and School, Chautauqua Music Festival, Music Academy of the West, SongFest, and Tanglewood Music Center, among others.