Summer 2020 Intern - Introducing Eva Zhang
I hope everyone is having a wonderful lunch break! My name is Eva Zhang and I am so happy to be a part of the Kent Blossom Music Festival as a summer intern. For the past year, I have studied Music Leadership at Eastman School of Music and worked as a Graduate Assistant in the Institute of Music Leadership (IML). This is my first week of work and I am trying to keep up with everything I have learned so far. As part of my internship, I'll be writing a weekly blog. For the first entry, I want to share a little bit about myself and why I choose KBMF for my internship.
Although I started playing piano at a very young age, my decision to have a career in music did not take place until my sophomore year at the University of Rochester, where I have obtained my undergraduate degrees in Finance and Music. For the last two years at college, I tried to figure out what I want to do in the music world. My time at Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra inspired me. At RPO, I served as a volunteer with the Education and Community Engagement department. Helping to put together educational concerts, I have reassured the transformative power of music. Watching young kids engaging with the musicians and conductors on the stage, I wish I could have had the opportunities to enjoy such educational concerts in my community when I was young.
So, when I was choosing my graduate program, I knew I wanted to further explore music education and outreach initiatives in art organizations. How can we better support people from the next generation through various education and performance opportunities? What kind of practices could help young artists to be more relevant and closer to a professional world? What roles do community partners play in those practices?
As I talked with my director about my capstone internship, I found that the Kent Blossom Music Festival could provide some answers. The educational component at KBMF is the biggest part, not only because KBMF supports young artists but also these educational goals are accomplished with community partners. During our graduate studies, we have talked a lot about the importance of engaging with the community. For me, this kind of partnership with The Cleveland Orchestra is one of the successful examples I can learn from. At the same time, I can work closely with chamber music and orchestral studies, which I haven’t had enough time to immerse myself into as a pianist and that I need to learn more about.
When I worked as a Graduate Assistant at the IML office and as a volunteer at RPO, I supported many general office tasks. At KBMF, I want to challenge myself with new responsibilities and experiences, something I haven’t done so far. Having a virtual internship would definitely be one of the new experiences. And I would say the blogs are one of them too. In this abnormal situation, there are many changes that happened in the music world, for both individuals and organizations. I believe there will be more new challenges coming up during my time at KBMF as well. I look forward to helping to adapt to this new environment and sharing my experiences with you!
Written by Eva Zhang.