After a success at auditions in December, three RBHS orchestra students traveled to Osage Beach Jan. 28 to perform at the Missouri All-State orchestra competition. Juniors Alice Yu and Arnold Chen and sophomore Joanna Yu were among the RBHS students selected to All-State music.
Chen, a violinist, said he felt anxious when he performed during the audition.
“Yeah, I kind of felt nervous because I really wanted to get in,” Chen said. “This motivates me to practice more because practice makes perfect.”
The three Bruins split apart after reaching Osage Beach to audition for their chair placements. Afterwards, the whole orchestra came together for the first full rehearsal. Chen said the first rehearsal was messy because it was the first time people who didn’t know each other played together.
“The rhythm of the piece we played was hard so it took time for every one to come together and adjust,” Chen said. “After that rehearsal, everybody practiced more and listened to each other and played better.”
Joanna Yu, who placed seven among 13 other viola players, said it was very exciting rehearsing with people you don’t know for the first time.
“It was the first time I have played within such a large group of people,” Yu said. “I am just really excited to do this because it is very different from our orchestra at Rock Bridge because there is so many fewer people.”
After their rehearsals, all performers listened to a jazz band from New Orleans, Louisiana, as well as a motivational conductor from St. Louis. Yu said the process opened people’s eyes to possibility.
“It was just nice to see them play because everyone kinda woke and started to play better,” she said. “I am excited to play with the whole group.”
Since this was Chen’s second time coming here, he said there weren’t that many differences.
“The conductor changes every year so that definitely brings a difference,” Chen said. “Last year, the conductor was different, so this year I had to adjust to the new one.”
By Harsh Singh