“Young people need places where they can explore their identity to be creative, take risks, push themselves, and be inspired. BYSO did all of that for me and I will never forget it.” – Rose Bellini ‘97
Before joining BYSO (then GBYSO), Rose Bellini’s love of cello was a mostly solitary passion. Joining BYSO opened up an entire world, providing a sense of place for her lifelong love of music. Recalling that magical time in her life, she says, “all of us came from disparate places to do what we loved together, and there was an identity built into that.” Starting as an alternate, Rose remembers her first BYSO experience being like a door cracked open into a community of incredible young musicians. Inspired by the talent of her peers and the rigor of the conductor and coaches, she worked hard to earn a spot in the Repertory Orchestra and eventually the Senior Orchestra. Her love of cello finally had a physical home and community, and Sunday rehearsals were the best day of the week.
Rose credits BYSO with opening up the possibility for music to be at the center of her life. After BYSO, she went on to earn a Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate in Cello Performance at Indiana University. Following, she began a dual career as a professional musician and arts administrator. Her path led her from Indiana to New York to now Seattle, where she is Director of Institutional Advancement at the Bertschi School. Even now, Rose identifies first and foremost as a musician, continuing to perform as a professional cellist alongside her other professional work. “I would not feel like a whole person without playing music, and it all began at BYSO,” Rose states.
Similar to BYSO alumni from a wide range of career trajectories, Rose carries the discipline and drive perfected while playing classical music into her everyday life. She says that she still strives for that feeling of momentum—replicating the experience of working hard, challenging yourself, then walking out onstage to do something you thought impossible. Rose still vividly remembers the feeling of playing with BYSO in Symphony Hall and the Hatch Shell, noting that to this day, when she hears the repertoire she got to perform, it brings back a flood of beautiful memories.
Upon hearing of The BYSO Youth Center for Music, Rose was delighted to imagine BYSO in a home of their very own. Thinking back, she says, “young people need places where they can explore their identity to be creative, take risks, push themselves, and be inspired. BYSO did all of that for me and I will never forget it.” Rose decided to make a gift to the BYSO Youth Center for Music because she wants every child to have the same inspiring, life-changing experience that she did and for the organization to have a permanent home. She notes that regardless of the amount given, the gesture of paying it forward is enough to change lives.
The connections forged and the inspiration gained continue to shape Rose’s path, reminding her of the profound impact BYSO had and on her and will have on countless lives for years to come. “We can’t predict all the positive outcomes of this project—I think they will be even more than we can imagine right now,” she says.
Help Create the BYSO Youth Center for Music
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