My NYO Inspire journey began during lockdown, when there weren’t many opportunities for me to play for or with other people, except through some online musical courses, or playing in the streets for my neighbours. My sister had already participated in NYO Inspire activities before and has recently joined the NYO orchestra, so I felt inspired to apply to NYO Inspire, to see what it was like for myself.
When I joined my first Zoom call of the first day of the activity, I was extremely nervous, and I thought that everyone there would be at a much higher musical level than myself. However, I soon found out that everyone was extremely nice and friendly and participating digitally meant that there were so many young people from different places and different cultures.
In my cello section, we all chatted and shared interesting things about ourselves, and already, it felt like an extremely friendly environment. I think that it was very important to connect digitally with other teenagers because it inspired me and helped me move onwards with my musical playing. Being in lockdown for a long time, you can forget what it is like to play with other young people of similar age to you, who also love music as much as you do.
During the NYO Inspire activity, I learned lots of new things. In my one-to-one sessions, I was given some very good exercises and tips to improve my playing by NYO tutors, which I found extremely helpful as it meant that I could move forward in my music. During the day’s sessions, we also talked about auditions and orchestras, and how to overcome our nervousness in an audition or exam. I found this advice incredibly helpful as I often get very frightened on stage or at an audition. One final thing I found very inspiring was the advice I’ve heard from our tutors that performing at the back of an orchestra doesn’t mean that your playing isn’t as brilliant as someone else’s in the section, in fact they suggested that if you sit at the back, you are further away from the conductor which means that you are equally skilled to be playing from that position.
Overall, it was extremely fun to participate in, and it has helped a lot with my playing. I can’t wait to do it again!
This is Koko’s first stop in her NYO journey!
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