Student Soomin Chung Violin.jpg

SooMin Chung

Violin | Orchestra

At my first NYYS rehearsal, I vividly remember being blown away playing the opening lines of Beethoven’s Egmont Overture. Now in my third season, I am still amazed and honored that I am able to play among such talented musicians. Through this group, I have truly matured as a musician and classical music enthusiast, playing an exciting range of repertoire from Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite to Mahler’s 2nd Symphony.

One of my favorite parts of the program is the annual Kickoff weekend during the first concert cycle. It is through this weekend of bonding that I have been able to meet many of my closest friends, and it is a wonderful opportunity to focus on the music away from daily distractions. Throughout my years at NYYS, I have made so many unforgettable friendships in this tight-knit community of passionate musicians.

Additionally, some of my most memorable moments are from the Orchestra’s tour to Argentina in 2014. I will never forget the excitement and animated cheers of the crowd echoing through the Usina Del Arte while we played Libertango, an iconic cultural song in Argentina. During our stay, we performed concerts in Buenos Aires while being exposed to cultural elements of tango music and maté tea.

Every week at rehearsal, I am able to retreat from the stress of schoolwork and exams, and fully immerse myself in the worlds of great composers. Under the leadership of our conductor, Joshua Gersen, I have truly learned how to listen and play as an ensemble, and how to express the details in the music. The lessons of dedication, teamwork, and patience I learned from NYYS have helped me to excel in the non-musical aspects of my life as well. It has given me confidence as a leader within my school community and has encouraged me to work my hardest in all my academic endeavours. Being a member of the New York Youth Symphony has truly changed my life, and it is an experience that I will never forget.

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