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Face the Music Alumna Profile: Camille Dietrich

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Face the Music alumna Camille Dietrich was interviewed by Special Music School and Face the Music alumna Emma Ike.

Meet Camille Dietrich: She is currently enrolled at the Manhattan School of Music, and her affinity for contemporary music continues to grow. She has appeared as a soloist with the North New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and the Rockland Symphony and has performed solo recitals in the metropolitan area. Camille also is an avid chamber musician: check out the Madkoi Quartet.

How long were you a member of Face the Music, and what were your favorite aspects of the program?

I was in FTM for my junior and senior years of high school, and then played with FTM as an alumni during my freshman year of college. One of the things I enjoyed most was being in the Face the Music Quartet and getting coached by the Kronos Quartet. Our quartet got a chance to work closely with them in rehearsals and at the end of the year perform side by side with them with all of the other FTM Quartets in the program at Carnegie Hall. I also really enjoyed having the opportunities to rehearse with composers who wrote the pieces we were playing.  It is a completely different experience to be able to talk to the composer about what they had envisioned when they wrote the piece, and then trying to make those elements come to life in a performance.

What was it like coming back to play as alumna?

When I came back to play with FTM as an alumna, I was in an ensemble that was going to be the first ever FTM group to go on tour. It was nice to get to play with old FTM friends, and become friends with musicians who were new in the program as well. The music was very challenging, and it really pushed everyone in the group to work hard at every rehearsal. The dedication and hard work from all of the students and faculty of FTM made the experience of learning and rehearsing a huge piece of music and going on tour to Washington, D.C. even more fulfilling and worthwhile. Playing in FTM as an alumni helped me learn different leadership skills, and it encouraged me to be the best role model I could be for other young musicians. Being surrounded by so many motivated and positive musicians pushed me to be the best cellist I could be, while still making friends and having fun.

How has FTM helped you grow as a musician?

FTM expanded my understanding of classical music. It exposed me to new sounds, rhythms, and techniques I had never seen or heard before. This greatly improved my sight reading skills, and especially my rhythm. FTM gave me many tools and skills for going about learning and practicing complicated rhythms, so now even the most difficult and scary looking rhythms in a piece of music don’t seem so obscure and impossible. Being in FTM taught me the importance of being aware of every instrument’s part in the score, as well as how to listen and communicate with my colleagues while playing. Having the opportunity to play so many different kinds of music by living composers has helped me become a more well-rounded musician, and has opened my mind to a number of possibilities for what I might want to do in the future with my music.

What was your favorite venue that you performed in with FTM?

One of my favorite performances was playing Steve Reich’s Triple Quartet at the Baryshnikov Theater with the JACK Quartet. It was a tremendously challenging piece, and performing with musicians as serious and hardworking as the JACK Quartet was an inspiring and unforgettable experience.

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