Amy Chen: Clarinet

Dressed in a simple top and musician black slacks, Amy Chen ’07 is one of the most talented people in Andover. During the summer, Amy placed first in the prestigious International Clarinet Association’s High School Competition, winning a thousand dollars. She currently is the principle clarinet player in Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra, and Band. In addition, she is the Co-President of Chamber Music. Talent can come in many forms. Amy disguises her talent through her humility. When asked about her musicianship, she bows her head and responds quietly but always with a smile. “I play the clarinet because it’s an interesting instrument” she says. “Music has always been my passion and I always find time for it.” Not a small feat, considering the amount of work load in Andover. Amy achieved her status as the top high school clarinet player by practicing for hours on end. She started playing the clarinet at age 6. Before coming to Andover, she used to go to The New England Preperatory Conservatory on weekends and was the principle clarinet player there. She tries to practice at least an hour of clarinet a day-sometimes more on weekends. Despite having a great passion in music, Amy does not consider herself a ‘music person.’ “I came to Andover mostly for its academics,” she says. When asked about her future job, she says that she is considering a career in International Politics as well as a possibility of becoming a professional clarinet player. Although Amy has prospered with the Andover Music program, she wishes it was less daunting for other students. “Our music program is very good compared to our rival schools-but I wish that it was more open toward students that have never played before and are interested in playing. Be it Orchestra, Cantata or Band the level of playing sometimes scares students into joining music.” Amy Chen is a model for passion and dedication. Hard work and a love for music propelled her to be the top high school clarinet player in the world. Not letting achievement get to her head, Amy has a humble personality that will make her successful in any circumstance.