What is your dream?
My dream is to setup a non-profit arts company that addresses aspects of social justice through new classical music works, performance and education. My dream is to see a younger, more diverse audience in the classical music industry where the classist ideals are deconstructed to create a more inclusive space to share music.
How did you find your passion?
I was 8 when I started learning the violin and by age 12 I knew that I wanted to major in music. The aspect of using is as a vehicle for social change only came about when I took a gender studies class at the University of Sydney and came to the realization that I wanted to do more than just perform or teach. I wanted music to be a medium for which learning, justice, innovation can co-exist for the common good and not just for entertainment. That art can have a higher purpose.
Tell us about your dreams?
I'm currently in my 2nd quarter at Seattle University studying an MFA in Arts Leadership. One goal I have is to start up a student organization at the university where liberal, performing and visual arts students can attend workshops on using their art for social change. Through this, there will be artistic curation, events and advocacy trainings for better arts education and funding. I was recently accepted as a facilitator for the university's "Diversity and Equity Educator Program." My goal is to learn as much as I can in these areas, so that I can facilitate and affect change on an individual level, and hopefully in a institutional level. I want to apply the skills I gain to future arts organizations I work with. I'm also intending to continue my internship in the community engagement and marketing departments with the UW World Series, a global music and dance organization.
How will the scholarship support your endeavours?
The scholarship is helping me fund part of my education here. It is giving me the opportunity to learn, innovate, discover and grow as an individual. University fees here are so high, and I'm so grateful for this opportunity.
Career highlight or biggest achievement?
My biggest achievement has to be the music concert I curated in Sydney which sold-out. It made me realize how much I desired the creation and curation process of building something from ground up and making an impact on the audience. Another achievement was getting into graduate school to pursue a masters in arts leadership. I never thought I would get to this stage in my life being a first generation undergraduate in my family, but with the help of so many people, foundations, scholarships and grants, this has been made possible.
How important is inspiration in your life?
Inspiration is very crucial in my life being a musician. I have always been inspired by others, but I'm now sitting on the other side and thinking about how I can inspire others, and it's strange to think that every individual has the power to influence, create change and inspire.
Who’s your hero (and why)?
My mother has to be my hero. I don't think she knows this but I see her many sacrifices for my grandparents and our family an act of courage and great love. Her ability to empathize is so tremendous and admirable. Her life hasn't been an easy one, but she has always made sure that I knew she was there for me in times of great struggle or difficulty.
How will you support your community in the future?
I intend use music as a vehicle for social change, specifically in areas of racial justice, women's rights and combating classism. In classical music, women composers and their works are very underrepresented; even more so if they are a women of colour. I want to provide a voice and platform for young underrepresented performers and composers. I also aim to create a space where classical music can be shared with everyone and not just an elite group of patrons.
What’s the motto that you live by?
Take risks and try, there's nothing worse than doing nothing because of fear. Fear is an indicator that something matters enough to you, so act on that fear and take the plunge; where's there to lose?
Classical music, Indie folk artists, alternative indie.
Wow, so many! I love Korean cuisine, but I also can't live with vegemite, avocado and cheese on toast. (I had to get some vegemite sent over from Australia to the US)
A Million Little Pieces by James Frey. The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes.
Favourite TV Show?
I don't have much time for TV these days but if I have to pick it'd be "How I Met Your Mother"
If you had one message to share with other women chasing their dreams what would you say?
Stop at nothing to make your dreams happen, especially so if you don't have that privilege handed to you. Sometimes you will have to work harder than others to achieve your dreams, but that is okay, it only makes you stronger and I promise the journey will be so much more fulfilling. Do whatever you can, try your hardest and ask for help and support. For the longest time, I grappled with asking for help, but it's really okay to do so.