MúsicaOcupa, Ecuador, 2017–18; Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra, 2016–18; Owensboro Symphony Orchestra, 2016–18; Peoria Symphony Orchestra, 2016–18; Chautauqua Music School Festival Orchestra, 2016; Madeline Island Chamber Music Fellowship Program, 2015
My parents have told me that I came home from preschool and said, “today we listened to this amazing music by Bo-TAY-ven!”
When I met Yo-Yo Ma for the first time in high school and he told me, “you have to believe in yourself!”
I think classical music concerts should be more accessible to more people: take down the barriers between performers and audiences, have more affordable ticket options, continue to find new and interesting places to perform, remove the stigma that only a certain type of person can enjoy live classical music—it’s for everyone!
This answer is constantly changing, but I keep coming back to Beethoven’s Heiliger Dankgesang, the middle movement of his String Quartet No. 15, Op. 132. This music always finds a way to help or heal when I need it.
It has been so incredible to be a founding member and organizer of MúsicaOcupa, a chamber music festival that takes place in Quito, Ecuador. The festival brings together local and international musicians to put on spontaneous and planned concerts throughout the city with the purpose of bringing classical music to people who normally wouldn’t be able to experience it. It has been so moving to witness people being moved to tears from hearing classical music for the first time, or to see anti-social children suddenly immersed and friendly, or to really feel that the music we are producing is forming a direct connection with the audience that is listening right in that moment. These are the kinds of connections I play for!
Once while performing Dvořák’s Piano Quintet on a very hot and humid day, the plug at the tip of my bow popped and the hair of my bow exploded everywhere! I had to stop and run to borrow a friend’s bow for the rest of the performance.
Own your decisions.
This might be cliché, but I really could never choose one. I rarely listen to the same thing twice in a short amount of time, and I love random playlists that introduce me to songs I’d never find on my own.
Machu Picchu! It was awe-inspiring and humbling; and I really love mountains.
Jacqueline DuPre, J.K. Rowling, and my Grandma June—three strong women I admire.
I’m a Gryffinclaw
Don’t say yes to everything, but be open to the seemingly innocuous engagements that can change your paradigm.