Describe yourself: Passionate, joyful, exploratory

Biggest goal in life: Making my family and friends proud by succeeding in my craft and winning an orchestra job

Can't live without: Sleep

Favorite place at DePaul: School of Music practice rooms

Favorite academic project: Learning strange audition excerpts like Seven Studies on Themes of Paul Klee

Love going to school in Chicago because: It’s my hometown and I just love the view, the weather, the music and the people I meet here.

I've always wanted to: Travel outside of the U.S.

Thin crust or deep dish? Thin crust, from the Home Run Inn

Favorite book: Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Speckled Band by Arthur Conan Doyle

Dream job: Principal Percussionist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra or the Los Angeles Philharmonic

DePaul University’s School of Music appealed to me as a student and as a musician because: It has a very good reputation among my private instructors and the faculty was very diverse. I love that I receive such a rich education for my major, especially through private instruction. I’m confident that I will be guided efficiently to my end goal, winning an orchestral position in a major orchestra.

Being a music major at DePaul, in the heart of Chicago, means: Having a massive number of opportunities to work in the field of music. For example, with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago having auditions yearly, musicians here can easily participate in them. Also, since the Chicago Symphony, Lyric Opera and the Grant Park Symphony are in the city, we have access to a wide range of concerts and can even perform in these prestigious organizations as substitutes.

Most important thing I've learned so far in my major: When you’re having fun performing, especially in an audition, it appeals to the listener and makes you sound even more musical than you may intend. By achieving maximum expression, leaving no stone unturned and having full command of the different sounds you can create on any percussion instrument, one will be able to show how the music speaks to you as an individual. That is what a conductor, a panel of judges or an audience wants to hear. I continue to fine-tune my technique, and the joy I have for playing percussion continues to grow. One great thing about being a percussionist is that I’m required to play loud sometimes, and I absolutely, positively love playing loud!

Area of Study: Music Performance, Percussion
Graduation Date: June, 2014
Hometown: Chicago, Illinois
High School: Whitney M. Young Magnet High School
Awards & Achievements:
  • National Repertory Orchestra Substitute
  • Civic Orchestra Substitute
  • Grant Park Substitute
  • Jack Kent Cooke $10,000 Scholarship
  • Participant, From the Top at Carnegie Hall radio and television performances
Campus Involvement:
  • DePaul Chamber Orchestra
  • Percussion Ensemble
  • Symphony Orchestra
  • Wind Ensemble
  • Wind Symphony
  • Target Hope, DePaul Chapter
Current Employment:
  • Assistant Director, Chicago Symphony Orchestra Percussion Scholarship Program
  • Percussionist, Everybody’s Bible Church