50 Years of Alumni: Laura Hebert

College(s)/University attended:
University of Northwestern- St. Paul

What years were you in GTCYS?
2000-2004. 2004 was my graduation year.

What skills or lessons did you learn in GTCYS that you still use today?
Playing in an orchestra taught me teamwork! It is different from playing a sport because everyone is constantly playing. You learn to watch and adjust and play together as one large group. Also, perseverance. As you work to improve your individual skills through practicing, you learn to keep going even when it is tough because the whole orchestra is counting on you.

Why do you think GTCYS is important for students now?
I think it is important for students to be part of GTCYS because making and creating live music together as a group is so vital to young musicians both for their musical well-being and their emotional well-being. For many, being in an orchestral setting is the glue that holds so many aspects of life together. It has been a beacon of light especially in the past 18 months! Bringing kids together to make music is life-changing for everyone that is involved.

How does music still play a part in your life?
Music is very much a part of my life! From playing violin at church, teaching private lessons, and conducting a GTCYS orchestra. It has been so exciting to relive all the amazing memories I had from being a student in GTCYS, but now as a conductor

What is your favorite composer or piece of music?
I love listening to Mahler’s symphonies, and I love playing Brahms’ sonatas on my violin.

What’s a fun fact about yourself?
I love doing anything.

What do you hope to see from GTCYS in the next 50 years?
GTCYS is making so many wonderful strides in the form of equity. I love seeing how GTCYS is growing to meet the different needs of each student. I look forward to seeing GTCYS continue this path in order to give more students the opportunity to be part of an orchestra.

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GTCYS auditions are opportunities for students to play their instruments so we can get to know them and match them with one of our ten school-year orchestras for the 2023-24 season. To audition for GTCYS, students register online, record a video, and submit an audition online.