“I recognized that I got so much out of BYSO, and that’s why I wanted to give back this year. Hopefully, a lot of people feel that way, and I think they do.” – Kevin Chen ‘11
Looking back on his time playing viola in BYSO, Kevin Chen ’11 recognizes everything the experience brought him beyond skilled musicianship. He remembers the strong sense of community, the unwavering support system, and the commitment to his peers. The experience taught him to be patient with all processes, recognizing that hard work will always pay off in the end. “I recognized that I got so much out of BYSO, and that’s why I wanted to give back this year. Hopefully, a lot of people feel that way, and I think they do,” Kevin states.
With two sisters both involved in BYSO, Kevin had seen the orchestra play in concert before joining in high school. Remembering this time, he recalls, “at that point, I was not confident in my ability to do what BYSO students do.” After playing amongst a group of peers at BYSO and working towards an ambitious level of musical and personal growth, Kevin found himself in the very seats he once watched in awe. “Once I was able to join the orchestra, I gained so much confidence through the process of collaborating with other students and working with the coaches and conductors”, he remembers fondly.
After pursuing a career in law, Kevin took a step back and reflected on how he finally got to where he wanted to be and what he should put his time towards going forward. He realized just how much BYSO helps young people grow into themselves. Finding a renewed appreciation for BYSO, Kevin decided to become an Alumni Ambassador to sustain a connection to the organization.
When asked what message he has for current BYSO students, Kevin advises that they should be confident in knowing their experience in BYSO will help them in whatever they decide to do later on. For Kevin, being part of an orchestra built a foundation of determination, patience, and commitment you carry with you no matter where you go.
Are you, or someone you know, a BYSO alum with an interesting story or life update to share? Contact Jeanne Bedard, Development Associate, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (617) 358-6119!