I can honestly say that the night of March 4 was the happiest my heart has felt in as long as I can remember. That night marked my senior recital, and after all of the work writing the music, finding performers, distributing parts, editing parts, editing parts again, and organizing rehearsal times, was well worth it for the joy that I felt at seeing it all come together. This wasn't pride at my own accomplishments, as pride is an empty feeling in the end. No, the joy that I felt was from coming together with my fellow musicians, many of whom have come to be my closest friends while at UNI, and making music together. This might be cheesy, but this feeling is why I put in the time to better myself as a musician. While other jobs might pay better and be less work, I don't think anything can quite come close to the feeling of pure joy that I felt in the night of my senior recital.
I have many people to thank for the successes that led up to my recital. The teachers that I have had in the last 4 years helped to shape me as a musician, and the performers I have worked with brought the music to life. On that night, every single performer played and sang as well as I have ever heard them play, and each piece had a life. Off stage, I was overwhelmed by the turnout at the event, as people from all phases of my life seemed to show up in supporting me. I truly can't say thank you enough to all of those people, and most probably will not see this post, but it was a night I will always remember, and it truly provided a warm lens through which I will view my time at UNI for the rest of my life. My only regret from the night is that I forgot to take pictures with my performers! I have provided a couple of pictures here from the people who stuck around until the very end of the night- my family and my friends Andrey Floryanovich and Abigail Moore, who performed my pieces Are You Sure? and Dichotomy, respectively.
Outside of my recital, classes have been chugging along, and it seems impossible that it is my last semester of my undergrad. It seems like just yesterday that I was moving into my freshman year dorm. Since then, I have met so many people who have shaped me as a person and a musician, and formed relationships with friends and professors that I believe will last for a long time to come.
I may be slightly over sentimental about some things, but I also found out some exciting news earlier this semester. My piece Three Etudes for Piano won 3rd place in the 2019 National Association of Composers/USA Young Composers' Contest! I was shocked at first, and very humbled by the recognition. Now I just need to find somebody to record the piece for me!