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Erica C.

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1 reviews

Review for Midwest Young Artists Conservatory, Highwood, IL, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Without a doubt in my mind, I can say that I would not be where I am today if it weren’t for Midwest Young Artists. I joined MYA when I was in seventh grade playing the violin. In addition to playing in orchestra, I was part of a unique chamber group in which every violinist had to take a rotation on viola. Because of my positive experience learning a new instrument, and the wonderful guidance and support of my chamber coach, I continued to play viola in the MYA Symphony Orchestra. My chamber music experience opened many doors- including that to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign on a viola scholarship.

The chamber music program at MYA is extraordinary. Every one of my coaches had us look beyond the score. We looked at theory, history, and ultimately what made our piece unique. In addition to classical literature, I had the opportunity to perform the latest hip-hop/rock quartets. This allowed me to explore the wide range of repertoire that is available in chamber music and share it with audiences. Sunday Soirees at MYA allowed my chamber groups to showcase what we had been working on throughout the year. One of my chamber groups performed our hip-hop quartet as part of an MYA outreach program in Chicago. I was so fortunate to be part of an outreach program that could bring music to everyone.

From local performances at some of the greatest venues in the Chicago area, to international tours, I had opportunities of a lifetime with MYA. One trip in particular was the 2005 tour to Spain & Portugal. Hands down, this was one of the best trips of my life. I didn’t know I could see so many places, make that many memories, and perform that many concerts in just three weeks. There is no better way to see the world than to travel and perform with your friends and fellow musicians.

I may have “graduated” from MYA, but I know that the door is always open anytime. Annual alumni concerts, and events allow me to keep in touch with my MYA family throughout the years. The guidance, support, and encouragement I received from Dr. Dennis and the rest of the faculty put me where I am today. I am currently an elementary & middle school orchestra director. I would not be where I am today if it weren’t for my wonderful experience in Midwest Young Artists.

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