At Reed College, we believe that music enriches the life of the mind, body and soul. We seek to build an inclusive learning community in which students may explore their musical interests, gain knowledge, improve skills, and express themselves.
Whether students are continuing their musical journey or just beginning, the Music Department offers a variety of opportunities for engagement through scholarship, performance, composition, and collaboration. We believe that all music is valuable/every voice counts and our diverse curriculum prepares music majors and minors for a variety of careers after graduation.
MUS101 Private Instruction
Registration for private instruction is now open! As a reminder, after you have registered for MUS101 (FCR or NCR), fill out a music schedule form.
You will be able to indicate on the form if you need financial aid. You will be placed with an instructor based on availability and will be contacted by Director Monica Ohuchi by the first week of classes.
MUS104 Orchestra auditions
The audition for MUS104 (Orchestra) will take place on the first Tuesday of classes (August 30) between 6:00-7:30pm. Any NEW ORCHESTRA MEMBERS will need to prepare an audition of excerpts (details available in the link), three octave Major and Minor (natural, harmonic, melodic) scales, and a piece of your choice (exemplary of your playing). Registration must be completed for MUS104 PRIOR to auditioning.
MUS108 Jazz auditions
Auditions for MUS108 (FCR or NCR) will take place the first Monday of classes (August 29) from 5:00-8:00pm. Questions about auditions or the Jazz ensemble should be directed to John Savage.
Students must be registered for an ensemble, lessons, or a music class to receive access to the Practice Suite. Prior to receiving access, students must complete a FALL Practice Agreement
. Any violations to the practice agreement will result in swipe access removal. Please contact Monica Ohuchi to sign the practice agreement
Private Instructor Spotlight: Braizahn Jones
Braizahn Jones is a graduate of The Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Hal Robinson and Edgar Meyer. Braizahn studied with Paul Firak (Principal Bass, Las Vegas Philharmonic) in his hometown of Las Vegas, NV before attending The Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University; There he studied with Jeffrey Weisner before transferring to Curtis in 2014. Since then Braizahn has gone on to perform and tour with both the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Seattle Symphony before receiving tenure as the Assistant Principal Bassist of the Oregon Symphony. As a chamber musician, Braizahn has performed with world-renowned artists at Chamber Music NorthWest and Jackson Hole Chamber Music. A passionate teacher, Braizahn serves as part of the Double Bass Faculty with the National Orchestral Institute at The University of Maryland - College Park. He's served as guest faculty at the Pacific Music Institute in Honolulu, as well as various other festivals and youth orchestras locally, nationally, and internationally; he's set to join the Double Bass faculty at Reed College in Portland, OR starting in Fall of 2022.
How did you get your start in music?
A friend of mine who I'd known since 6th grade asked me to join Orchestra Class so she would have a friend in her class. Apparently I needed convincing because she offered me $5 to do so and I took it! Before I knew it, I was swept up by the culture of Orchestra class and I was pivoting my sports dreams to its music-filled equivalent. There's a lot to this story but it all comes together because of my high school orchestra teacher and Youtube University!
What is the most impactful advice you’ve ever received as a musician?
Jeffrey Weisner, my bass teacher at The Peabody Conservatory, was giving me feedback after playing some Mozart for him. I lamented at the style of the Classical Era because it wasn't as intuitive to me as Romantic Era music was. He told me that I'd better get past those thoughts if I ever wanted to play professionally because "The difference between a Professional and an Amateur musician is that the amatuer can only play well if they're playing the music they love; whereas a professional can make any music sound like they love it." This advice made so much music more accessible to me and definitely broadened my awareness as a musician because this advice applies in many different areas in life.
What music are you listening to right now?
My barber got me listening to the Talking Heads. I most recently have been digging into the music of Zakir Hussain, Nujabes, and The Berklee Indian Ensemble. As a musician of Western music I find Eastern styles to be very calibrating in how they provide context to musical gestures that otherwise just seem complicated.