Junior attends Aspen Music Festival and School in Colorado

Sabrina de Brito

Sacha Lin ’16 spent eight weeks improving her musical abilities through one-on-one violin classes and orchestra performances at the Aspen Music Festival and School in Aspen, Colorado this summer.
The school offers courses and activities in a wide range of musical subsets, attracting students from around the world. Programs include opera, composition and a conducting academy. Lin was part of the orchestral program and played in the Aspen Philharmonic Orchestra. Members of the orchestra consisted of students and mentors who led the front of each section. They rehearsed and performed a new program every week.
Lin has played the violin for more than 10 years. Her private teachers at the festival were Indiana University professor Alexander Kerr and USC professor Bing Wang.
“We worked a lot on getting my basics down and improving my technique,” Lin said. “Both of my teachers were very energetic and inspiring, so I was motivated to practice more.”
Living situations at the Aspen Music Festival and School varied by age. Lin stayed in the underage dorms at Marolt Ranch, a nearby housing facility.
The city offers a free bus service that Lin and her friends found very useful, Lin said.
Concerts were held daily and showcased both faculty and student performers.
“There were too many concerts to count,” Lin said. “It was sometimes even hard to make time for them with such a busy schedule.”
Vocal students also performed three operas during the two-month span that Lin was at the camp.
Lin said she had to apply for a spot in the program. She submitted an audition video in January.
A summer in Aspen also provided an opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the mountain environment that the city has to offer, Lin said.
“I went hiking three or four times,” Lin said. “It’s really nice around there because of all the greenery. I never got tired of seeing the Aspen trees everywhere. The downtown area was also fun to explore because there were quite a few antique stores. My friends and I found the weirdest souvenirs.”
Lin said she made new friends and has kept in touch with them through Facebook.
“It was great to meet new types of people — people who are more serious about a professional music career, but who still share that love for making music,” Lin said. “The overall environment was just so different from what I’m used to.”