Friday, February 22, 2013

April 26th Featured: Grace Youn, Violin

Photo Courtesy of Consider Chromatic
"My name is Grace.  I was handed a violin at age 7 after being told I was too short to play the cello and started piano lessons shortly after.  Now 21, I'm finishing up my music degree at the University of Puget Sound, studying under Dr. Maria Sampen.
As a soloist, I have performed with the University of Puget Sound Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, Percussion Ensemble, and String Orchestra, and the Tacoma Youth Symphony. I am currently concertmaster of the University of Puget Sound Symphony and am also a member of the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra. I have attended summer music festivals, including The International Festival
Institute at Round Top, Brevard Music Center, Innsbrook Institute and Music Festival, Northwestern Summer Violin Institute, and the Icicle Creek International Chamber Music Festival.   I was a prizewinner at the Beatrice Herrmann Young Artist Competition and was a national finalist in the 2012 Music Teachers National Association Young Artist Competition. I have performed in master classes for Miriam Fried, Bill Preucil, Kenneth Goldsmith, Blair Milton, Robert Chen, Cyrus Forough, and Janet Sung.

I had always considered myself a classical musician, but all that changed when I was thrown headfirst into a singer/songwriter showcase, asked to improvise string parts on the fly. Since then, my life has never been the same.  I mange my own YouTube channel, graceyounviolin, where I explore various musical genres, combining classical traditions and techniques with other music traditions.  I have been incredibly blessed to have been able to work with and learn from some of today's greatest crossover artists, including The Dueling Fiddlers, Alex DePue, and Mike Block.  I won the 2012 Rockin' Fiddle Chalelnge hosted by Adam DeGraff of The Dueling Fiddlers with a cover of Journey's Don't Stop Believin' and had one of my covers featured in Katy Perry's documentary, Part of Me.

In the last few years, I have learned that "musician" merely scratches the surface in describing what I do.  I have learned more than scales, staples of the violin repertoire, the fundamentals of violin technique, styles of different music traditions, or even how to make my violin sound like an electric guitar on distortion.   Music is a language and I seek to be fluent in all of its dialects.  I hope to bring as much rock and roll to the Sibelius Violin Concerto as I do classical precision and refinement to a cover of The Black Keys.  Ultimately, I seek to become a genre-proof artist, someone who pushes boundaries and brings a high level of musical artistry and excellence to anything I do."

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