Samuel Frois


Photo by Matt Dine


Second prize, junior category, 2014 Paulo Bosisio National Violin Competition; First prize, 2015 Bank of Minas Classical Music Competition; Promising young artist prize, 2018 National Soloist Competition of the Symphonic Orchestra of Minas Gerais


Mannes Orchestra

What is your earliest memory of classical music?

When I was first introduced to the violin. I visited a youth orchestra in my hometown and they were playing Beethoven’s 5th Symphony at the time. I had no idea it was Beethoven but it stayed with me, particularly the violin part, which made me go for the violin as my instrument of choice.

When did you realize you wanted to pursue music as a career?

I realized I wanted to pursue music as a career early on. I believe that when I first went to a music festival and saw more experienced players and what possibilities the violin and music in general had to offer, I felt instigated, almost as if I had to see it through. I wanted to see how much I could explore in music. After that period, I did everything in my power to pursue music as a career, and I started taking it way more seriously. 

How did you hear about TŌN? What inspired you to apply?

I heard about TŌN through a colleague from college who was in the orchestra and said many great things about the program. He has recently been awarded an orchestral job in his country and that made me even more excited to join a program that succeeds in helping young artists to fulfill their career goals in music.

What do you think orchestra concerts should look like in the 21st Century?

I think orchestra concerts nowadays should be engaging, which doesn’t mean superficial communication with the audience or choosing less challenging or innovative repertoire, nor choosing crowd pleasers. I believe that there should be a balance of programming the concerts with the public in mind, and also structuring systems with educational programs that can enhance the public experience with the music being played, that would involve pre-concert lectures on the pieces, open discussions, Q&A sessions with the musicians, and in general trying to make the public more comfortable and familiar with classical music. 

Who is your biggest inspiration?

The friends I made through music, whether through classical music or other styles of music. My talented friends push me toward wanting to improve and better myself as a musician and human being. Being able to play in an orchestra and performing chamber music allowed me to exchange so much information, emotions, and feelings, and facilitated the creation of bonds through music that certainly inspired me even more than the role models I definitely have in life.

Which composer or genre of music do you feel you connect with the most?

Brahms is one of my favorite composers. I feel like what draws me to him are his incredible melody lines. I do not know of another composer that can evoke so much emotion with his lines like Brahms does. 

What is your favorite piece of music, and why do you love it?

My favorite piece of music is the one I’m currently working on. It’s always like that for me; I cannot choose a single piece of music, I have this everlasting indecisiveness with choosing only one piece of music. Right now It would be the Brahms Sonatas, especially Number 1.

Favorite non-classical musician or band

Currently my favorite non-classical musician would be fellow Brazilian Pedro Martins. his album VOX is unforgettable.

If you could play another instrument, what would it be?


If you weren’t a musician, what would you be doing?

I would probably be working with my dad at his auto shop or doing something related to it.

Which three people, dead or alive, would you like to have dinner with and why?

Jesus, Job, and Oistrakh. Jesus, because I would like to know how a person can be so impactful throughout so many generations and only have lived 33 years. Job because he was the most resilient person to suffering, in my humble opinion. On earth and I would like to learn from him. Oistrakh because he had such an amazing sound and musical ideas, such a great violinist and person that I would like to have learned from too.

Tell us something about yourself that might surprise us

I almost lost my right pinky at age five in a door accident. Fortunately I still have it intact, and I’m able to play the violin because of it.

Piece of advice for a young classical musician

Don’t limit yourself to being just a classical musician, unless that happens by choice and not by fear of exploring more areas related to your field. Let yourself explore what else you can do in music, and reach a conclusion on your own time and terms. We can be many things!