Savvy double-degree graduate Marcus Crowe made the decision to relocate to Invercargill to pursue a career in music, and he’s never looked back.
Originally from Taupo, Marcus moved south due to the Zero Fees Scheme offered at SIT. And it was a serendipitous turn of events which helped him choose New Zealand’s southernmost tertiary training institute.
He had the opportunity to check out SIT while he was down on holiday. There happened to be an open day, so he attended and met with one of the tutors to discuss the programmes on offer.
Studying music had been in Marcus’s plans for some time as he’d played piano and guitar for 11 years, and practised singing for 5 years before moving to Invercargill.
The rest is history, as they say, Marcus enrolled in a Bachelor of Audio Production and Contemporary Music, and studied the two degrees, beginning in 2017 and graduating at the end of 2020.
Marcus said prior to his study beginning, he had no idea what to expect from SIT, but it didn’t take long for him to settle in and start flourishing. “I loved the course” he said.
Comparing the two degrees, Marcus thought the audio course was superior as he felt they offered more, and everything was to a higher standard, which he appreciated. He mentioned the opportunity to go to Byron Bay in the third year as the stand-out of the audio production course.
“...to go to Byron Bay and study over there, it was an unforgettable experience”.
He said the music course improved each year. After a rocky start and some initial tutor changes, Dr Jeff Wragg became Head of Department, and the programme became much better.
The toughest part of student life for him was keeping up with his assignments during his third year of study, but the challenges he faced were mitigated by being part of a community and the friendships he made.
Marcus was also supported beyond the classroom, he gained a part-time job teaching piano at Kennedy School of Music in his first year and that role carried on throughout his degree. A typical day would see him in class until 3pm, then he taught music from 3.30 – 6.00pm.
The performance opportunities presented to Marcus and his class mates during their time at SIT, reaped rewards and also provided networking opportunities, which is an integral part of achieving recognition in the industry, and results in chances to secure gigs.
Marcus said SIT helped 100% in his employment and they also helped him gain the skills needed for managing his career, like booking gigs for himself.
Since graduating at the end of 2020, he has increased hours teaching as a piano and vocal tutor at Kennedy School of Music, and he regularly gigs.
Marcus has some ideas about his long-term plans but at present, his goal is to continue to make a living from music.
“I would love to do music for movies, so combining the skills I learnt in the audio course and the music course will help achieve this”.
Marcus said he could recommend studying at SIT, “...if you apply yourself to the course, opportunities can arise and being in a small city, it’s not as hard to get somewhere as it is in somewhere like Wellington”.
“Studying at SIT just made me more motivated to make it in the music industry”.