Although music majors aren’t an entirely rare breed, they can easily be mixed up with others within their own species, the sleep-deprived college student. Noted by their sluggish behavior and small will to carry on, it’s a wonder the species thrives enough to have so many classes within it. Today, we focus on seven key ways to identify the class of music majors in their natural habitat.
1. Always have rehearsal or a practice session to be at.
They avoid social interaction, always with this excuse. “Sorry I have rehearsal…” Sometimes, it’s like they don’t exist outside of class. Are they speaking the truth?
2. Post pictures of their instrument or music on social media.
That’s how you know they’re telling the truth about all that practice time. Aesthetic photos of “bae” and the most difficult sheet music in their folder grace their instagram, colored by fun filters. #practicing #truelove #100daysofpractice
Except, are they actually practicing? At the very least, you know they’re in the practice room.
3. Can speak in about 10 different languages, but can’t always understand them.
Vocal majors especially have to be able to passably pronounce a ton of foreign languages. Can they say important things like, “Where is the bathroom?”
But they can say cryptic things to you with no context whatsoever. And they probably will.
Die Luft ging durch die Felder,
Die Ähren wogten sacht,
Es rauschten leis die Wälder,
So sternklar war die Nacht.
The breeze passed through the fields,
The corn swayed gently to and fro,
The forests murmured softly,
The night was so clear with stars.
Robert Schumann. From Mondnacht, Op. 39, No. 5.
4. Live off of snacks instead of actual food.
All those rehearsals and practice sessions leave very little time to sit down and eat. So, when music majors actually do eat, it’s usually random snacks from their backpack. Nuts, chips, granola bars, cookies, you know, all the stuff you should live off of instead of veggies and meat…
5. Have a mostly black wardrobe.
It’s easier this way. Trust me. With as many performances in a week as music majors have, it’s a good idea to have many concert black outfits to choose from. If they barely have time to eat, what makes you think they’ve got time to wash one outfit multiple times a week?
Plus, if you wear black everyday, you don’t have to worry about forgetting about a performance. You’re all ready to go!
6. Are always singing or humming.
And are always harmonizing. In the car, the grocery store, the bathroom…
7. Always have a pencil on their person.
You are shameful and must commit seppuku if you do not have a pencil in rehearsal. As a result, music majors always have pencils hidden in multiple places on their body and in their bags. It’s better this way.
There ya have it! Seven ways to spot a music major in the wild. There are many more tell tale signs, but that should give you a good head start as you begin your wildlife observations.
Remember to record other behavioral findings in your journal and share with your fellow scientists below. Happy trails!
About the Author
Amy King is a music theory and piano instructor currently residing in the Chicago area.
She holds a Master of Music in Music Theory and Cognition from Northwestern University (June 2020) and a Bachelor of Arts in Piano Performance and English Literature from High Point University (May 2016), where she received the Outstanding Senior Music Major Award, which is awarded to one single graduating music student per year.
Amy has been teaching private piano lessons for 12+ years, taught classroom music theory for 5 years, directed choirs spanning ages 4–25, led and arranged for a university a capella group, and composed and arranged music for various soloists and ensembles.
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