Elena Sloman

From: Sebastepol, CA

Age: 21

Instrument: Oboe

School: University of Southern California, BM Oboe Performance

Drinking: Chai Black Tea

"A lot of times you’ll get inspired, and you’ll get motivated and you want to try something, but then you realize that you can’t do it, and you think, ‘what am I doing?’ and then you give up. It’s so easy to give up. It’s kind of trite to say, ‘oh, don’t give up! keep trying!’, but I think it’s ok to say, ‘try it in a different way.’ It relates to when I joined the soccer team in high school. I wanted to be the forward and make all the goals and score all the points, but I didn’t have the skills to do that and I wound up being put in a defensive position. But it turned out that my aggressiveness was more useful on defense and the role that I was initially wanting to have was not the right one for me. So obviously everything doesn't go just as you'd expect--take a grain of optimism instead of just a grain of salt would be a good way to look at life. Things will always work out"

Advice to others: "Go back to what inspired you to get into music, and figure out why it inspired you. Try and experience that again. It might not fix your issue, but it’ll at least give you the energy to try and overcome the problem."

Life MantraEverything will be fine!

Cause/Charity: www.water.org

Is success dependent on having inspiration and motivation?"Success has so many definitions, and each person has their own definition, so it just depends on the case. My view on success was if I was content with what I was doing. For me, inspiration and success would be closely connected because my success would probably stem from inspiration. Different people have different motives. But, because of my value of success, inspiration and motivation are directly related to success."