Joanna Hsieh

June 25, 2020

Rising senior Joanna Hsieh has been playing the flute ever since second grade. Despite many setbacks along her musical journey, Joanna has come out strong and earned her spot in the California All-state Band.

Courtesy Joanna Hsieh

Rising senior Joanna Hsieh has been playing the flute ever since second grade. Despite many setbacks along her musical journey, Joanna has come out strong and earned her spot in the California All-state Band.

In elementary school, Joanna wasn’t sure as to whether or not music was something she would take seriously. She had experience playing piano in the past, but she didn’t seem to have a true passion for it. That was when her second grade band teacher introduced her to the flute.

“It took me a while to learn how to properly blow into a flute,” Joanna said. “But once I got it, I really began to enjoy playing my instrument.”

When she initially began learning flute, Joanna was very successful. She quickly found that her skills stood out from many of her fellow student musicians. However, as she got older, the competition also improved.

Along her journey towards mastering the flute, Joanna unfortunately experienced her fair share of poor mentorship. While many of her friends and family thought she was exceedingly talented, her old flute teacher made her feel as if she would never be good enough. That influence made Joanna question her drive towards learning a new instrument.

“My previous flute teacher would tell me that my younger friends played the flute much better than I did,” Joanna said. “I felt very unmotivated most of the time and began to dislike the flute after constantly being discouraged by her.”

Luckily, Joanna was able to restore her passion for the flute by switching teachers and gained enough confidence to begin playing competitively. Competitions gave her goals to aim for and challenges to look forward to.

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