Choosing the most prestigious university to study music in Europe is not an easy choice. And apart from great results and academic performance, students must also think of their college years’ experience. This means opting for the right city and the right campus. The college experience is a combined one that must ensure that at the end of these years the student is prepared to start a career in music and that must provide the proper inspiration, offer creative outlets for young people and opportunities to prove how innovative they are. Cultural institutions, nightlife, special events, concert halls, modern venues, access to real performers, these are all things the chosen city must offer to back whatever the student learns in class.
BEST EUROPEAN CITY EXPERIENCES FOR MUSIC STUDENTS
Student life in Paris and the Conservatoire
You cannot talk about Europe and bohemian experiences without starting the list with Paris. Does this sound like a cliché? Then you do not know Paris, and especially not through the eyes of a student. The place may have changed a lot and the atmosphere may have changed, with immigration and the opening of the job market to people from all over the world. But Paris remains Paris, and for those with a passion for music, it will always have that extra bit of inspiration, that extra bit of je ne sais quoi that keeps people dreaming.
For starters, there are more than 18 universities in Paris, meaning that there are a lot of starry eyed students pacing its streets every day. If this does not seem like much, know that youthful demographic influences a city, its investments and the changes made to accommodate all citizen requests. Therefore, you will be among many young people, just like you. What is more, being such a big European city, the world’s most famous singers will feel honored to perform here. Forget about studying in a place where no one big ever comes. Paris is THE place to be if you want to go to all the great concerts.
The Conservatoire de Paris creates an amazing learning environment, offers classes in a lot of artistic fields of interest, and offers all facilities on campus. Students have access to studios where they can practice, they have campus accommodations, a special priced cafeteria, unless they want to spring for something more like French haute cuisine from time to time. The campus is a place of tolerance and diversity, a non-smoking area, surveilled and well-catered for.
Student life in Vienna and the Vienna Conservatoire
Student life in Vienna has its own rhythm. Some may think that classical music students will appreciate it more, but this option must not be set aside by those interested in more modern musical genres either. However, it is true that Vienna does not have the hustle and bustle of life in American big cities or in London, another European city, for that matter. The rhythm set here is perfect to study, feel comfortable, settle in, find your own pace, then see if you can tune it in with the pace of other students. And when you do, it feels amazing. A laid-back city, with parks and lawns, with neat streets and beautiful architecture. Every corner is a good corner to sit down with your course book and start browsing through it.
But can you enjoy student life in the city that runs like clockwork? Of course, you can. Your options range from cultural events to nightclub parties. On Saturday you can enjoy an indie movie and on Sunday you can go to waltz classes. The cafes are amazing, world renowned actually, so if you are that type of student, who will likely be caught a lot before a cup, sipping and contemplating the afternoon away. You have a lot of great places to do so. They don’t call it the Viennese Cappuccino for nothing.
The Vienna Conservatory offers Classical course, Jazz courses, Pop, Musical Theatre and Pedagogical Courses. Events are organized on a regular basis, so your schedule will be quite full, especially if you are encouraged to perform, not only attend. This is great practice. And what better way to ease into performing on stage that to do it in Vienna, where everything is relaxed.
Student Life in Amsterdam and the Conservatorium van Amsterdam
The Dutch are seen as the most open-minded, tolerant and accepting of Europeans. No wonder so many young people are interested in studying there and in staying long after graduation and trying to build a life in Amsterdam. The capital of the Netherlands is amazing, it offers all possible facilities to anyone living there. Well-organized, accessible, inclusive, and welcoming, Amsterdam is the dream city for any student. While you get accustomed to using the language, you can still get along with everyone in English, without any problems. There are English TV channels, the restaurants have English menus and directions are in English. As a student in Amsterdam you will constantly feel like a pampered tourist. Which is not bad, if you ask us.
There is always a lot to do. Cultural activities are abundant, and if what you are looking for is different from mainstream entertainment, you will not go lacking in options either. There are festivals, themed bars, clubs, museums, galleries, events, special performances, street performances. Speaking of street, you will fall in love with street food and Dutch food in general. Go for the music, stay for the fries! Expect this to become your motto in only a couple of months.
The Conservatorium van Amsterdam is an amazing place to start laying the foundation of your music career. For starters, imagine how whimsical it is to study classical music in such a modern building. Then know that you can also opt for pop music, jazz, research, pedagogical courses. There are online courses and continual education is supported and encouraged. Creative, innovative, inspiring, supportive – this is how students describe the environment at the Amsterdam Conservatory. A good deal, in our modest opinion.