What would you tell someone who has never been to the symphony but is interested in attending a performance?
Start with something light! If you didn't grow up with classical music, attend a rocks, pops, or family concert. There's something for everyone at the Symphony!
What advice would you give someone looking to live a more musical life?
If you're looking to live a more musical life, don't be afraid to push the boundaries and explore different genres. You might find something you like that's been right in front of you forever! Also, listen for fulfillment. If your heart feels full when listening to it, you're listening to the right thing.
What do you wish you had known as a student?
As a student, I wish I would’ve understood that one bump in the road doesn’t mean your career is over. I was really hard on myself and took every little mistake and failure to heart, but that most likely shaped who I am today.
What's the best piece of advice (musical or otherwise) you've ever received?
Musical advice: “It’s just about the singing.” As a musician who is not a vocalist, my instrument is an extension of the human voice. If I’m not thinking like a singer, then I’m not actively making music.
Life advice: “You’re always going to have to deal with things you don’t want to. Someday you’re just going to be doing the same thing, but you’ll be older.” This really resonated with me. A former teacher of mine told me this and it was a game-changer. You never know when life can change in an instant, so don’t sweat the small stuff.
What are your top three desert island pieces?
At first I thought this was question was about "dessert pieces" and instantly thought of Tchaikovsky’s Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies, but I don’t want to bring that piece to a desert. I’d have to say, Mahler’s 9th Symphony, Beethoven’s 7th symphony, and “September” by Earth Wind and Fire.
What piece made you fall in love with classical music?
Claude Debussy’s Arabesque No. 1 for solo piano. If you’re having a bad day, listen to this. The rich colors and sonorous lines will turn that frown upside down!