From: Plano, TX; Roseville, CA; Lake Forest, CA
School: University of Southern California, GC Bassoon Performance
Favorite Drink: Breve Misto with Sugar Free Hazelnut
"If I were to talk strictly bassoon, reed making destroys my life haha. But if I were to think something more conceptual and making not a physical struggle, I think a lot of it, and it could be everybody’s problem, is that it’s all a brain game. It can mess with your mind and in trying to conquer the brain game, (I call it the ‘brain game’ because you play games with yourself and you make up things that aren’t there in your mind), I’ve created a lot of new problems for myself. It has been a big process of self discovery, but I think the biggest discovery was finding out the right things to be motivated by.
We as musicians get presented with this constant game of comparison because, in an audition setting, all you’re doing is being compared to a big number of other people. I found myself struggling with using that method of comparison as my motivation in the form of having to be better than someone, rather than just trying to be the best that I could be. I just find that it’s a very negative form of motivation, to compare myself against others. Even though motivation is a positive word, there is such a thing as negative motivation and I just found that I could also be as easily negatively motivated. It was nasty. I’m a competitive person, and I can be a sore loser, but I accept loss and I can better control my competitiveness and have it stay within parameters. But, overall, I had to learn to do something because I wanted to be good at it, not because I wanted to be better than someone."
Advice to Others: "First of all, I would tell someone that it was ok to feel like they were wandering aimlessly around, and to not know. We always want to know ‘why’, but I think on a lot of levels we need to not hate what we don’t understand."
Quote: “Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whine less, breathe more; talk less, say more; hate less, love more; and all good things are yours.”-Swedish Proverb
In order to be successful, do you need inspiration and motivation?: "My gut reaction is yes, but at the same time the other part of me says that it depends on how you measure success and what that means to you. If we’re talking in a career sense, I do think that you need some form of inspiration or motivation. Because, even if I was entering data into spreadsheets, I would definitely not feel inspired by what I was doing. But if I had kids at home I would absolutely feel motivated to show up and do my job. At that point, my family would be my motivator and my inspiration and that would be essential. Your source of inspiration doesn’t have to be directly related to what you need inspiration for, but we just need that in life in general to keep going. I would also consider inspiration being hope, and hope is very powerful. So, I don’t know. I think motivation and inspiration are essential, but at the same time it can’t be the only thing because you could lose sight of what you’re doing right now."