Where are they now? – Interview with our LMH Alumni Joseph Hie

Joseph Hie – Background information

Joseph Hie studied under Lina Chan for 10 months in 2013 in preparation for his 2014 Bachelor of Music auditions at The University of Melbourne ( Melbourne Conservatorium of Music).  The University of Melbourne is consistently ranked among the leading universities in the world, with international rankings of world universities placing it as number 1 in Australia and number 34 in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2013-2014). At the time of enrolment with LMH, Joseph performed an AMEB Grade 8 level piece by ear without having prior professional musical training. To be successfully admitted into the Bachelor of Music, Joseph needed to shine amongst the piano students across the world who have had at least 8 years of professional musical training. Many experienced and reputable piano teachers would have not accepted Joseph as a student because he was mission impossible and a risk on our reputation if he failed his audition. Saying that,  I took up the challenge because I wanted to help him achieve his dream. The moment Joseph was admitted into the Bachelor of Music, Lina realised that her 14 years of teaching experience has now helped our LMH students who have limited time and resources have the opportunity to pursue their musical dreams. Through our outstanding student achievements,  LMH has expanded across Melbourne over the last year and is now coming to Sydney. All our LMH Alumni will have the opportunity to teach at LMH and help share their musical expertise and experience with our future generation of students.

Joseph Hie Interview 

Joseph is currently completing his first semester of Bachelor of Music at The University of Melbourne.

Question 1.

How has learning by ear without preparing for AMEB examinations or any structured examination method helped you or hindered you in your first year of Bachelor of Music ?

As I’ve relied so much on my aural abilities to help me learn pieces quicker, its slowed down my learning of sight reading. Although it has helped me learn pieces faster when I started playing, in the long run it has slowed my learning down a little.


Question 2.

Who is your piano teacher at the University of Melbourne and can you tell us a bit about the background of your teacher and how often you have lessons with him/her?

My teacher is Concert Pianist Janine Sowden who has toured internationally with appearances mostly in Europe. Her biography can be read here http://www.janinesowden.com.au/bio. We have lessons once a week which run for 45 minutes.


Question 3.

What subjects did you study for first semester? Which subject was your favourite? What was the most useful thing you learnt (musical knowledge) in your first semester that you would like to share with future Bachelor of music  students?

There was set compulsory subject for first year which were Music Performance, Music Language, Aural Studies and Art of piano teaching. Music performance was enjoyable and improved my playing skills substantially from the little guidance I received in 45 minutes. Art of Piano teaching was the most interesting as the tutor Dr. Mark McGhee is extremely insightful and knowledgeable about teaching.


Question 4.

What has been your biggest challenge yet? How did you overcome this?

There were many challenges some of the most challenging parts would be learning how to practice properly. In the beginning I struggled to concentrate for an hour which hindered practice, and once I overcame that my practice became somewhat quantity over quality which ended up in me injuring my wrists. So now I focus on the quality of my practice without doing wreckless things which may harm my hands.


Question 5.

What are your contact hours like and how much practise is expected of you?

The contact hours are around 16 hours a week which gives a good amount of time to practice. My teacher expects 5 hours daily piano practice.


 Question 6.

What is the culture like in the Music faculty? What extracurricular activities have you been involved with?

Among the students the atmospheres quite warm, not overly competitive and if someone does a good job performing it’s a pat on the back, if not so good its words of encouragement. I’m yet to join any extracurricular activities however I’m planning to do chamber music next year.


Question 7.

How do you manage your time ? what would be a typical week for a first year b.music student?

A typical week would be practicing Piano coming back from Uni, and most of the weeks there’s about 1 or 2 assignments due per week. Practicing is first priority for me so I get that done before assignments. If I don’t have enough time in the afternoon usually I wake up an hour or two earlier to practice.


Question 8.

What is your musical career goal? What would you need to do in order to achieve this?

The dream goal is to be a concert pianist, but I do enjoy teaching which I wouldn’t mind being my musical career. To be a concert pianist I basically have to knuckle down on practice and put my name out there.


Question 9.

What advice and suggestions would you give to aspiring future aspiring B.music students in preparing for their audition and surviving the first semester of Bachelor of music?

I would recommend expanding your musical knowledge as a whole. Not just your technical skill in playing but also research some history about music, composition and especially composers of the pieces you play. For surviving don’t worry too much about your marks and grades on assignments, if you barely pass you barely pass. It’s about the experience and how much you learn which make it worthwhile.


Our LMH Teachers

Our talented LMH teachers are fun, kind and passionate people who are academically and musically successful. Our students at LMH continue to achieve outstanding results every year because we value education and creativity.  We would like to think LMH is not just another music school. We are a group of multi-passionate people who have successfully pursued multiple career paths and love music because of our many years of professional music training. Our multi-talented young generation need role models to help them understand that they do not have to restrict themselves to one career. There are many possibilities in this world and they can be who they want to be, as long as they do it well. We welcome multi-passionate teachers who want to help change the world with us ( one student at a time).