Brenda is one of our flautists in the orchestra. We've asked her a few questions in this installment of Member Spotlight!
What was the first instrument you owned?
The first instrument I ever owned was a weird little toy organ. After that, when I was 9, my very first flute.
How did you come to study the flute and what drew you to the instrument?
I didn't have a lot of experience with music but I just thought the flute looked cool and wanted to try it.
What is some of your favorite repertoire?
I love the more modern stuff, but lately have been really getting excited about playing JS Bach. I play with my best friend once a week and we are currently working on Bartok, Bach, Rutter, and Beethoven. Two of my all time favorites are the Copland Duo for Flute and Piano and the Prokofiev Sonata.
Who have been some of the most influential people in your life?
This is a tough question. My parents, knowing very little about music, always made sure that they got me whatever I needed to continue my studies. My father gave up that Christmas bonus more than once, there was the year when I needed a "big girl" flute and the next year when I needed a "big girl" tenor saxophone. I was also very much influenced by my early teachers in Scituate where I went to school, Diedre Spadazzi, Kevin Kane, David Neves. In college, Gregory Zeitlin would allow me to pick the most outrageously challenging music to play and never said no, but instead encouraged me to do the work. Currently, I would have to say that my colleagues in COBSJ have been extremely influential, inspiring me to dig deep and work hard to be part of such an incredible group of dedicated musicians.
What, for you, is the most fulfilling aspect of your life as a musician?
I love making music - any kind, anywhere, anytime, any instrument but my greatest pleasure comes in seeing my students enjoy and be successful at making music.
Are there any performances or moments in your performing career that stand out in your memory for their significance? Could you tell us what made these performances particularly special for you?
My very first college performance in front of the Music Department was significant due to the fact that I was completely terrified. Since then, I have come to love performing. Most recently, I performed at my graduate recital in 2017. It was so much work and so much fun. Not only did I have the pleasure of performing for friends and family, but I had several of my really close music friends perform with me, including my daughter, Lily, who sang like an angel (just a little proud). Having the opportunity to perform with COBSJ also stands out, being able to play with so many talented and well prepared musicians is a pleasure that I feel privileged to enjoy.