It has been a really amazing first semester here at CCM. I can't believe a quarter of my Master's Degree is done, just like that! There was some major things that happened, both good and bad, and very memorable events. Cendrillon by Massenet was likely the highlight of my whole semester, to get to play 2nd flute and the back-stage solo in a world-class Opera Production. But I did also get a principal debut in the Philharmonia, which was the Bartok Violin Concerto No. 2. I feel very privileged to have had these experiences.
It's a good feeling to have known one has progressed. In a matter of months, I feel I have matured as a musician quite a bit more, and went higher and farther in my goals than ever before. This is why I went to grad school, to encounter things that challenged me, and would give me opportunity. And now at the end of the semester, I see an exciting future ahead for the Spring! So many awesome performances will happen next semester (including appearing in 3 recitals, 1 of which will be my own solo recital!), and I can only see more opportunity arising.
This semester was filled with really a lot of darkness though, a suprising level in fact. Changes in environment can make one more sensitive to such things, but there were some pretty major incidents that happened which I don't feel comfortable talking about on the internet at the moment, related to the music school. All that can be said is, I will be getting through it, and I'm not alone because many of us were affected. For this reason I believe I've become exceptionally close with the fellow flutists in our studio. I'm very happy for my new friends, and grateful for them. Other stuggles happened too, things that people struggled with individually, as well as shared pain. These things have grieved me over the semester, to see so much pain, and shame, but God has also simultaneously given me a strong sense of his love. He gave me so many signs of his presence that I'm certain that this was all to build me up and not break me down. My grief isn't for destruction, but perhaps to soften my heart, and make me more compassionate and loving to others in the future. Those are features a musician and a person in general definitely can benefit from. Thus, I end this semester on a hopeful note, that things are going to get better soon.
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:11-13