University of Portsmouth Orchestra


Music has played a huge part of my life since I was a little girl. Whether it be going to a concert, practising the many scales you have to learn for an examination or simply chilling in my room listening to some of my favourite artists, music is everywhere.

I love making music. Whether it be singing along to my ukulele or my rough guess of chords on piano or playing my violin music is a big part of my everyday life and it is through playing, learning and understanding repertoire that I have been able to further appreciate some of the greats. Composers such as Hadyn, Mozart and Mendelssohn.

The main source of me being able to appreciate this repertoire is by playing and performing in orchestras. In orchestra I play my violin and its led to me playing some beautiful orchestrations. Whether in school orchestra or in a bigger orchestra near home I enjoy the experience of playing music and meet like minded people who enjoy working together to produce some beautiful work. For me, working together with a big orchestra is not only great fun but you feel a great sense of achievement when you hear the applause at the end of a concert or your conductor gives you some words of encouragement or congratulation.

When I was accepted to the University I contacted the musical director (Colin Jagger) in order to join the orchestra that Portsmouth offered. He explained when rehearsals are (6:30-8:30 on Thursday’s) and asked me to come and play for him so he could decide weather I would play Violin 1 or Violin 2. Before the audition I was very nervous and shaking, even though I knew that the musical director was a violinist which eased my nerves ever so slightly. I have played solo before but I was very keen to be first violinist as I have aspired to be the leader of the orchestra for a long time. The audition was very successful as he said I should play first violin! I was very excited and nervous at the same time as I waited till the following thursday to meet everyone in the orchestra.

I walked into the same room I had auditioned in, but now, the split screen had been pulled back to reveal a much bigger, brighter room. Seeing the  huge size of the orchestra made me feel bit overwhelmed as I wondered what on earth I had got myself into. However I soon met some very friendly violinists and we discussed what year we were in and our names and got to know each other a little better. We were then given the music which was Symphony number 1 opus 11 by Felix Mendelssohn and we were told that we were going to have a run through. I had never played this particular piece before, neither was I very good at sight reading so I was slightly panicked. However I managed to keep up and stay with the rest of the orchestra.

The end of rehearsal soon came to a close and I was very happy to have met a lovely bunch of people. We were allowed to take the music with us to practise (which I will definitely be doing!) and we would be meeting again the following week. I would highly recommend all musicians take the opportunity to join the orchestra as it is a great way to meet likeminded musicians. I will also be deciding whether to go on tour to Czech Republic and Slovakia so I will keep you all updated with that!


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