My Turn: The role of music

Published 11:29 pm Saturday, April 18, 2015

COLUMN_MY TURN_AMY ARNOLD_WEBI remember going to a wedding reception, I was 6 or 7 at the time, when I heard the two violinists sitting over in the corner playing duets. I stood mesmerized and all I knew was that I wanted to learn how to create the beautiful sounds that I was hearing, with such grace and ease, as the two women in the corner. I told my mom, “Mommy, I want to do that!” and my mom opened the door for me.

She set up my first lesson and purchasing my first violin. It’s so tiny compared to the one that I play now. At my first lesson, I approached my teacher, Mrs. Lois Omande, and at 7 years old I looked up at her and asked, “Can you teach me how to play ‘The Devil went Down to Georgia?”

Mrs. Lois and I have yet to tackle that particular piece of music but she has taught me so much and I am so thankful, I couldn’t have asked for a better teacher. Mrs. Lois is also the one who brought me to the Beaufort County Community Orchestra, and I am very glad she did. She has let me play alongside her in the orchestra for the past six years. Playing with the orchestra has broadened my ear for music; it’s been a great experience and has helped me make new friends. A friendly face I remember is Mrs. Robin Potts’. At my first violin recital we sat near one another and I thought she was the coolest lady ever. She had on these clear shoes that reminded me of a princess. Now I play alongside her and many other wonderful people in the orchestra.

Having great influences such as my mother, Mrs. Lois, Mrs. Robin, and countless others, has kept my interest and passion for music. Music could never be boring. There are infinite combinations and possibilities waiting to be preformed. I know I’m a teenager, I should be hanging out at the mall with my friends, driving all over God’s creation or occupying my time doing my nails. My life is busy, and I mean busy. Since the age of five, I’ve been swimming competitively, playing violin, volunteering and participating with 4-H, and serving as chapter president for my high school FFA. While in high school I have also been involved with theater, plays, musicals, stunt night, you name it! I also enjoy my life on the farm and scuba diving. I spend my time doing many different things. I stretch myself thin and fill my plate to full, but it’s been such a blessing. I always make time for music, my violin and swimming. These activities are great stress relievers to me. I believe that taking the time to learn an instrument has grounded me as a person. Understanding that things take time and practice has given me patience so I can look ahead to the future. I am so glad that all throughout my busy schedule I have kept violin and music in my life.

Amy Arnold is a member of the Beaufort County Community Orchestra, which is performing today at 3 p.m. at the Turnage Theatre in downtown Washington. The concert is free and open to the public.