Destyne Miller has played bass in GTCYS for four years and is currently a member of Concert Orchestra. She shares the powerful impact GTCYS has had on her life below.
“GTCYS has been what I would call a blessing. It has given me the opportunity to have an outlet from my everyday life such as the school, home – and the thousands of emotions that tend to stay bottled up inside, unable to form just the right words in order to express themselves to those that don’t understand the things I try to speak out loud. And GTCYS has been able to give me the voice that people don’t hear by the text that comes from my mouth, but by the music played in a room filled with color and soul.
I started playing the upright bass at the age of eight, becoming attracted to the way it communicated back and forth with the other instruments in the orchestra. As if it was having its own conversation with each other in such a beautiful and harmonious way that left my soul aching for more. I joined Philharmonia East my first year and moved up to Sinfonia East and Camerata before joining Concert Orchestra this year. After the first couple of years being in GTCYS, I had soon started to understand what it meant to be a musician.”
“GTCYS taught me that accomplishments came from hard work that wasn’t measly earned by just a few practices here and there overlooking your sheet music. It is earned by enduring the many moments of frustration in making sure the incredibly difficult and very specific line in our piece of music is close to perfection. It’s the self-taught discipline, the long hours of practice, and the never-ending struggle of starting over, again and again, to have it sound to the best of our ability. But the most important key in becoming a musician, is never, giving up.
There have been so many times where I’ve felt as if I could quit at any moment, especially during this year through COVID that really made playing my instrument unappetizing and severely un-motivating. Though when being faced with this predicament, I tried to remember the reason why I’ve come this far in the first place. The spark that started it all. So with a big huff, and a couple of days to take a breather, I would go and pick up my instrument and try again. Never giving up to achieve your dreams is the most honorable reward that should be taken with admiration. Cherishing the long journey that will change us into incredible people along the way. It’s never easy to fail time and time again, having to get right back up after each attempt that chips away at our self-esteem and the little amount of patience we have to begin with.
Without GTCYS, I wouldn’t have been able to learn how to work together as a full orchestra, then before focusing on what I originally thought was important. I wouldn’t have been able to have the amazing opportunity to work with professional musicians to tutor me, helping me to consistently push myself past boundaries that were once unreachable in my eyes – that I thought were impossible. COVID has shown me just how important it is to keep fighting through the struggle of wanting to give up. I am sincerely looking forward to GTCYS after COVID improves, as I miss playing and seeing everybody together. I am also excited to see everybody back to our so-called ‘normal’. GTCYS is a part of who I am as a person and has given me the most wonderful experiences that I will forever be grateful for.”
GTCYS positively impacts countless students each season. Interested in joining? Auditions are open until June 6 for GTCYS’ 2021-22 season. Learn more and register at gtcys.org/auditions.