Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Lauren Inglis, 17, of Liverpool recently represented Nova Scotia and the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra at the Canadian National Masterclasses series.
The Liverpool Regional High School student was able to play for Donald Renshaw, the principal trombone of the National Arts Centre Orchestra.
"I got to play for an hour because unfortunately the other person that was supposed to play got sick. It was fun," said the Grade 12 student. "I played, we got to do some [questions and answers], and the great thing about this year is that I am working on my repertoire preparing for university auditions. He was really great at going through everything with me, guiding me and helping me, giving me tips so I know what to prepare for."
Inglis has applied to several universities and wants to take music education next year, hopefully in-person, she said.
Inglis grew up in a musical family. Her mother, Melanie, and father, Bruce, are both singers. Her older brother, Lincoln, is a singer, percussionist, piano player, and recently learned the guitar.
The student began piano lessons at about six years old and recently finished her Grade 8 practical exam in the Royal Conservatory of Music. She began playing trombone in Grade 6 when the band program began in middle school.
"There's something really special about the trombone. When I was getting ready to first start I was having a conversation with one of my friends when my teacher said, 'I don't want to discourage you, but your arms are pretty short,'" recalled Inglis.
"So I kind of took that and said, 'Well, I'm going to go for it and try it.' It's kind of like, 'Well, I'll show you.'"
She joined the Mersey Community Band in Grade 7 and signed on with the Nova Scotia Wind Ensemble when she was in Grade 10. She joined the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra (NSYO) two years ago.
"It's a great experience [playing with the orchestra.] It is really interesting to play with an orchestra when you have the string instruments and all that," she enthused.
The groups have been unable to meet in-person this year, but the NSYO has been working virtually on a project with different artists, including painters and dancers. Occasionally members are asked to send in recordings of a piece, so it can be put together for a concert.
Local trombone teacher Rod MacGillivary has been teaching Lauren for the past six years. He waxed lyrical in praise of her, describing Inglis as hardworking and dedicated with a lot of "musical maturity," which he attributed to her work ethic.
"I'm extremely proud of her. She has a natural curiosity and so much talent. For a student her age, she is doing extremely well. She has a bright future ahead," said MacGillivary.