I am applying to The Juilliard School because Juilliard cultivates dreams and creativity into success. The saxophone is like a poet’s pen, and it’s my job to make the pen sing. I am an inventive musician. But more than inventive, I bring an unparalleled originality to my performances—I do things with music that other musicians wouldn’t dream of. Would an average musician think to play never ending repetitions of three note scales, or to hold out off-key notes for minutes on end? No. I’m not just some artistic hippie; I get how this industry works. I’m a professional paid musician. I’ve been a regular performer near the Lincoln Center and outside of Madison Square Garden. My audiences love what I do. Sometimes, people will be so overcome with emotion that they’ll even pay me to stop. Beauty is very powerful. Why, at times, I even surprise myself.
Like any art, my music is best enjoyed from a distance, which is something my audiences understand. Listeners like to keep a good ten to fifteen feet from me, which I can only see as a sign of the utmost respect. My ability to combine shrill yells with my melodies leaves my audience in awe. And they almost seem overwhelmed by my lung capacity, as I never stop, no matter how many times they ask that I take a break for my own safety. I value how much they respect me and don’t want me injured. To me, this love is what being a musician is all about.
I’m entertaining! Just not in the sense of a traditional saxophonist. I don’t play well in jazz ensembles, in orchestral setups, or with anyone else in general. I’m a free spirit, a non-conformist. I perform in sweatpants. I need to feel what I’m playing. I can’t be constrained to sheet music. But that’s not because I can’t read it, or anything. My refusal to play the piece during my audition was an attempt to prove a point. It definitely wasn’t because I didn’t know what to play. I felt it was more admirable not to show off. I also hope that the argument during my audition over the proper way to hold a saxophone will be forgiven. The disagreement was clearly a discretion in taste, and I hope anything rude I may have said can be overlooked. I’m not a racist. I was only caught up in the tempo of the moment.
The saxophone is more than just an instrument to me. The high notes and low notes it possesses are an analogy for life. We can live a life in perfect pitch, or we can let time pass by in an out of key existence. If accepted into Juilliard, I would be an incredibly committed student looking to enhance my ability. I promise to never miss a class, or to even miss a beat. I would be eager to start as early as tomorrow, if there wasn’t a court order keeping me two hundred yards from the school at the present moment. I want to clarify that I was only following that faculty member to his house to repay him for the music stand I broke during my audition with him. I honestly have no idea how that knife got in my hand, and I was only guessing the names and ages of his children. It’s not like I did any research, or talked to them. I hope those misinformed charges will not affect the admissions process for me in any way. And even if those charges were true, they only show how committed I am to know my instructors. I’m willing to go the extra distance, even if that means taking a train fifty-seven miles into New Jersey.
It’s this obsessive passion for learning and my hopes for musical grandeur that makes me an ideal student. If accepted into Juilliard, I won’t be just another charming stranger obsessively looking in through the school’s windows, I’ll be a student living a dream.