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 changing teachers
Author: lbstole 
Date:   2007-09-14 01:02

Situation: My college hired a new clarinet prof, but gave the students very little input into the decision. I've had several lessons with the new prof, and I just don't feel like it's working out. Our styles don't really mesh, and while for some people he may be great, it's just not working for me. I don't want to transfer because everything else about my school is great, but seeing as I'm a music major and he's the only clarinet professor I feel at a loss as to what to do. I still have three years left here.
Any advice, other then to suck it up and deal with it? Thanks :-)

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Mark Charette 2017
Date:   2007-09-14 01:05

lbstole wrote:

> I don't
> want to transfer because everything else about my school is
> great, but seeing as I'm a music major and he's the only
> clarinet professor I feel at a loss as to what to do.

Are you a music major or clarinet major?

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: MichaelR 
Date:   2007-09-14 01:10

If he had been there when you were making your original decision about college would you still have chosen this school?

Attend the school that's best for you. If that means transferring get to work on choosing the new one.

--
Michael of Portland, OR
Be Appropriate and Follow Your Curiosity

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: lbstole 
Date:   2007-09-14 01:29

I'm a general music major, but my primary instrument is the clarinet.

I don't know if I would have chosen this school or not if I was coming in now, based on the current teacher. It's the school that I wanted to go to all through high school, and in every other way, musically, socially, academically, it's perfect for me. I clicked very well with the former clarinet prof, but for a number of unfortunate circumstances she's not around anymore, hence the new teacher. Thus, I feel stuck.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: grifffinity 
Date:   2007-09-14 02:28

Three options:

1.) Transfer - as a Freshman, you probably wont loose ground at a new school as far as credit transfers go. Most school accept a certain amount of transfer credits from other schools with a grade above C (30-60 credit max for undergrad at most schools).

2.) Stay at your school, in your major, and take lessons on the side with a teacher you like. Obviously, this cost will come out of your pocket...but what can you do? Whether you tell your "in school" clarinet teacher about your outside lessons is up to you - my teacher never had problems if I studied with other people during my time with her. Some teachers do have a problem with students studying outside of their studio though, so the choice to disclose is up to your individual situation.

3.) Become a voice major...

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Tobin 
Date:   2007-09-14 02:57

Just one other thought to complement what's already been said:

Have you approached the teacher about your concerns? Do you believe they feel about you the way you feel about them?

If you have not communicated with them, then you are denying them the opportunity to meet you halfway on your needs.

Are the differences based on personality or pedagogical reasons?

James

Gnothi Seauton

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2007-09-14 04:43

Here is what happens sometikmes in our local music university. Some people ask for a specific teacher who is not in the faculty of the uni. If both the teacher and the uni agree, the student then has their private lesson with that teacher, even if they are their only student form the uni. In most cases that I know of both sides agreed. That's why there are three clarinet teachers for clarinet students in this university, eventhough officially there is only one clarinet teacher in the uni. Might be worth asking...?

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: skygardener 
Date:   2007-09-14 12:57

Good point. There are a lot of schools that do that. It will require you to do some footwork and it will probably take a semester before you can take lessons with your 'new' teacher, but I have known it to happen in many schools.
Talk to the head of your department about it. It also helps if you have decided on the person that is willing to be your teacher. Much better than, "can I go lookin' for a new teacher if ya don't mind?"

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: claritoot26 
Date:   2007-09-14 13:47

I agree with Griffinity's choice #2 and Clarnibass. Seek another teacher to study with occasionally on the side. If you find one you like, ask the department head if you can get course credit for studying with that teacher and drop the other one. This is the best solution, because it sounds like you would rather not transfer. Good luck. If you live near Burt Hara, he would be a great choice....I have no personal experience with him (other than hearing him a couple of times when he was with the Philadelphia Orchestra), but his students are winning auditions left and right! Best,
-claritoot26

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: elmo lewis 
Date:   2007-09-15 23:35

┬┐Is this teacher so totally incompetent that you can't learn anything from him? I suspect not or he wouldn't have been hired. He is there to teach and you are there to learn-who cares if he is not your pal or if you don't click with him. He's not there to be your pal. There was a flute teacher where I went to school who was rude and insulting to all his students but everyone wanted to study with him because he was one of the top teachers. Stop whining and start practicing.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Mark Charette 2017
Date:   2007-09-16 00:33

elmo lewis wrote:

> Stop whining and start practicing.

That is so bs ... there are options here.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Aussie Nick 
Date:   2007-09-16 01:14

elmo - don't be so ridiculous. People choose colleges largely based on which teacher they would like to study with. In my own experience, I have chosen teachers who styles of playing I have liked and who have had good results with other students. lbstole mentioned that they do not stylistically connect, and that can play a big part in a teacher/student relationship at this level. It frustrates me how some people can be so thoughtless in their comments.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: CPW 
Date:   2007-09-16 06:37

Happens more frequently than suspected.
Talk to guidance counselor or dean about obtaining a new teacher, try to get monetary funds transfered to offset new teacher, and hope that one you mesh with is available in the area.


Of course, perhaps first step is to have open discussion with present teacher....
but, if it is a personality conflict, a method of teaching that involves a style you dislike (British open sound vs. focused, or some other major difference) then perhaps a change is warranted.

Colleges have realized that students are not just pupils....they are consumers of a product, and they have to accept that if the product is not up to snuff, they must adapt. This approach might not always result in better education, but it is one that sells, for better or worse.

Against the windmills of my mind
The jousting pole splinters

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: skygardener 
Date:   2007-09-16 15:25

At my schools there were a few people that took lessons with a special teacher and these students not only got normal credit for it, but they also got the teacher paid through the school. That means it was the same tuition for the students with no extra fees. Like I said, it takes a semester because the teacher you want has to be put onto the school's payroll and has to apply for an adjunct teaching position- all of that is a just a formality if the head of your music department has said 'Ok'. Once you get that 'Ok' you are pretty much set- there is the 0.01% chance that it won't work but that is really rare.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: george 
Date:   2007-09-16 22:29

Elmo Lewis is precisely correct--too bad Aussie Nick and Mark C. don't see it that way. If you expect a school or a teacher to change to accommodate you, you're likely to be disappointed. If you don't like it there, get out. Otherwise, stop whining.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Mark Charette 2017
Date:   2007-09-16 23:28

george wrote:

> Elmo Lewis is precisely correct--too bad Aussie Nick and Mark
> C. don't see it that way.

Nah, I know of too many counter-examples personally to see it Elmo's (or your) way.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: skygardener 
Date:   2007-09-17 02:06

george and Elmo- Some teachers are just not good teachers, even if they are good musicians. If you don't know what I mean then you've never had the experience- you are very lucky.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: ginny 
Date:   2007-09-17 03:43

It might be possible to take your studio instruction at different college or university if there's one with in driving distance. You can use transfer units toward the degree. Go to the dept head or your advisor and inquire.

I've had units from all over the place count toward various degrees.

Another thing that happens when a student loses a wonderful teacher is that they don't give the new one a chance. My little story, I loved my first year music theory teacher, and he went on sabbatical my second year. I hated his replacement as did all of my class mates. On the other hand the kids a year behind loved the replacement and hated my favorite when he returned.

Loyality?

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: DavidBlumberg 
Date:   2007-09-17 14:18

Hey, if you went to the Curtis Institute when John Delancie was the Dean you could get thrown out for even wanting to change teachers.

http://www.MyTempoMusic.com

http://www.skypeclarinetlessons.com/about.html

Sponsored by Backun/D'Addario/BG/Silverstein/ Artist Teacher and Soloist

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Mark Charette 2017
Date:   2007-09-17 15:32

DavidBlumberg wrote:

> Hey, if you went to the Curtis Institute when John Delancie was
> the Dean you could get thrown out for even wanting to change
> teachers.


But that was known going in - and the changes in the Curtis faculty would generally be known well in advance. If a teacher at Curtis leaves, the students tend to go wherever the teacher goes - just like athletes following a coach.

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: DavidBlumberg 
Date:   2007-09-17 17:01

Not by the players who wanted to change teachers and got expelled  :)

I know of 2 - one is now at the top of the violin section Phila. Orch.

It's rough that the player doesn't seem to work well with the new teacher. I'd probably switch schools.

http://www.MyTempoMusic.com

http://www.skypeclarinetlessons.com/about.html

Sponsored by Backun/D'Addario/BG/Silverstein/ Artist Teacher and Soloist

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 Re: changing teachers
Author: Mark Charette 2017
Date:   2007-09-17 17:12

DavidBlumberg wrote:

> I know of 2 - one is now at the top of the violin section
> Phila. Orch.

You'd think after one got expelled the second person would learn ...

> It's rough that the player doesn't seem to work well with the
> new teacher. I'd probably switch schools.

being a music major rather than a clarinet major - if the education department were top notch and noted for their music majors then I'd really consider staying in the school and "suck it up", but as I said above, there are options, switching schools being one of them - especially in the early years before too much is invested.

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