In sixth grade, when my parents decided to have me start playing the cello. I still vaguely remember how annoyed I was because I had played multiple instruments before with no avail, so I didn’t know why I was starting cello.
Shockingly, I progressed fast and by the time I was in my second year, I was doing five-year pieces. I thought of the cello as one thing that I was forced to do, and it was because of this idea that I started to hate the cello.
In ninth grade, I had a teacher who caused me to have quite a negative experience. I was on the verge of quitting but of course, my parents wouldn’t let me. In 10th grade, a transformation came upon me and I began to appreciate classical music and the cello itself. I didn’t see it as something that I was forced into, but instead as a part of my identity and my pride.
The cello had many unintended consequences, with the biggest of them being the revelation that I can express emotion when I play. This was a huge leap for me, and after this, I started to get a better idea of how to interpret music not only by listening to it, but also by playing it. This opened up something in me that I have never felt before.
I feel like if I were to give up the cello at this point, I would lose part of my identity. This is why the cello has had such an impact on me throughout the years; going from absolutely hating the cello to coming to appreciate it as one of the things that makes me who I am. I have made many friends and had great experiences through music, and even though it wasn’t always great, the cello brought upon a change in the way I see not only music but also the way I appreciate things in general.
Jude Choi, Grade 11
John Marshall High School