Cypress Magazine 2019

Page 40

N I CO L E L I N A K S I TA Nicole has chosen to take up two different passions in her life: computer science and piano. From working at a start-up to performing Harry Potter with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Nicole has achieved quite a lot, including being named one of CBC’s Classical 30 under 30. That’s not all though, Nicole speaks about balancing a hectic life as she pursues a Masters in Music in Austin, Texas and dishes out some wisdom on mastering this skill.

I’ll begin with asking a little bit about where you are now. You’re currently studying in Texas for a Masters. Can you tell us what you are studying and why? I am currently studying a Masters in Music in Piano Performance. It is a performance-based degree, and I am finding that the lower credit requirement gives me a lot of time to practice piano. It took me some time to decide on pursuing a Masters in Music. When I graduated with a dual degree in Computer Science and Music, I worked at a start-up company during the day and practiced at night. I performed with a chamber group called the Postmodern Camerata, and my teacher introduced me to Music on Main. I was learning a lot from working at the start-up company, but because I did not have much guidance, I felt that I could only learn so much. Eventually, I left that role, and I thought that while I was searching for my next software job, I would teach piano. I ended up teaching many students over the next two years while continuing to perform. I felt passionate about working towards performances and competitions, and I was exposed to so many performers playing at a very high level and wanted to continue to develop my playing. Having more time to practice allowed me to become


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