Siouxland high school student performs the NAfME National Symphony Orchestra
SIOUX CITY (KTIV) – It’s not every day that a high school student from Iowa is accepted into a national symphony orchestra… but that’s exactly what an East High senior did.
“I was screaming and jumping for joy,” said Michael Widjaja.
Meet Michael Widjaja. He is in his final year of East High School and is one of six trumpeters to have the honor of being accepted and playing in the National Symphony Orchestra of the National Association for Music Education.
“By auditioning for this, I had no intention of doing it. My intention was to become a better person by doing this and in short, I will become a better musician by doing this,” Widjaja said.
To be selected in an All-National Honor Ensemble, Widjaja first had to be selected for the 2020-2021 Iowa All-State Festival. The National Symphony Orchestra will take place from January 22 to 24 next year.
“It’s going to be virtual. We’re going to have a good time and we’re all going to record ourselves playing and they’re going to compile it into a great video. So I’m pretty disappointed that it’s not going to be in person, but I’m happy to bond. Because I believe talent is not as important as being a nice human being and a member of society. Just making those connections… it’s going to allow me to do the next big step in my life, ”Widjaja said.
Widjaja has been playing the trumpet since he was in 5th grade… starting with a trumpet from his sister which was passed to him by a cousin.
Eight years of practice, dedication and play led to this national honor.
“To have the opportunity to be one of 6 trumpets selected from across the nation, I never would have guessed. And it just comes from a quote that I truly live by. Work in silence, and your hard work will be rewarded later. And that hard work will become the noise that is being made, ”Widjaja said.
Widjaja said he wanted to thank everyone from music teachers to coaches who helped him get to where he is today. He added that he would be branching out into music for his future with his choices at colleges ranging from UCLA to Juilliard and more.