50 Years of Alumni: Nick Gaudette

College(s)/University attended:
Cleveland Institute of Music (BM ‘04, MM ‘05)
University of Minnesota Mankato (MAT ‘15)

What years were you in GTCYS?
Philharmonic ‘96
Symphony ‘97, ‘98, ‘99, ‘00

What is your favorite GTCYS memory?
On the flight overseas during the Eastern European Tour of 1998-1999, all of us in the bass section kept the little blue and green striped foot socks that the airline provided us. As a bass section, we decided to wear the same pair of socks for every concert on the tour. I’m still not sure who had the idea, but it was a fun activity that kept us laughing at every concert! Since then, I have always accepted blue and green striped socks as an option for students to wear at concerts instead of black socks. It’s very hard to find blue and green striped socks! When students ask why, I always tell them about this experience and how incredible the trip was.

Why do you think GTCYS is important for students now?
GTCYS is a fantastic way to make friends from across the state! Symphonic orchestra collaborations were super rare at the public-school level so the ability to play with a full symphony orchestra is exciting, energizing, and musically fulfilling!

How does music still play a part in your life?
I am a public-school educator and orchestra director for grades 10-12 as well as an active performer.

What is your favorite composer or piece of music?
There are way too many to choose one. When listening to music, I home in on my mood and select the corresponding work. If I had to choose one, I would say anything Morton Gould writes (the America Orchestra sound is what I gravitate to most – probably because the bass parts are awesome to play…).

What’s a fun fact about yourself?
Right after college, I worked for GTCYS as a rehearsal assistant and became great friends with GTCYS’ previous librarian Steve Savre. Librarians are a total wealth of knowledge, and I would strongly recommend striking up a conversation with them whenever you get the chance!

What do you hope to see from GTCYS in the next 50 years?
Inclusion and access. I believe GTCYS is putting forth the effort to engage with communities to ensure that children can have the magical experience of playing in a symphony orchestra. Keep it up!

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