Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Orchestra Newsletter article part 3 - Freshmen Perspective

Starting a new life in a new place can be nerve-wrecking for many 17 and 18-year-olds. College freshmen often have their hands completely full just dealing with the various changes in their lives associated with beginning college life. Imagine then being a freshman standing in the back of the symphony orchestra in Bailey Hall, playing the first notes in a piece all alone: the fourth beat of every measure on the bass drum in Christopher Rouse’s “Bump.”

I entered the music world as a violinist 13 years ago, playing in orchestras since 5th grade. However, after also playing percussion in the high school marching band for 4 years, I decided to become a concert percussionist in the Cornell Symphony Orchestra.

Playing in the orchestra as a percussionist has been a whole new experience, and I love it. The director, the TA, and fellow members are – for a lack of better word – amazing. Whether it is the picnic at Stewart Park or the rehearsals in Lincoln Hall, orchestra director Chris Kim always gives his all, driving the orchestra to its fullest potential. Orchestra TA Spencer Topel is always there to assist both the director and the ensemble. Every member of the orchestra is unique, possessing various backgrounds, interests, majors, and life goals. Despite such differences, however, we all share the love of music which brings us together every Monday and Wednesday nights to the basement of Lincoln Hall, where we strive to play our very best.

While there have been big changes in life – high school to college, California to New York, and violin to percussion – I am glad and honored to be a member of the Cornell Symphony Orchestra. Thank you to Chris Kim and fellow members for an amazing start to my new life here at Cornell University!
- Risa Naka, Animal Science ’11

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