Bassoonist Performs Internationally
Sara Erb (’12), an all-state bassoonist from Bethany Christian Schools, toured France, Germany, and the Netherlands, performing with the summer 2011 International Southern Winds Ensemble from Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp. Each summer the camp serves more than 5,000 gifted musicians. Sara was selected by audition at the summer 2010 camp to participate in the 2011 international ensemble and eagerly anticipated this exciting opportunity, a year away.
When summer 2011 finally arrived, instead of relaxing and sleeping in, Sara rose at 6 a.m. daily for intense eight-hour rehearsals in preparation for the trip—though she still had time to make new friends with other ensemble members. While the training was rigorous, Sara found it rewarding. “Participating in the ensemble has helped me become a better musician and gave me an opportunity to play with others who are as good or better than I am.”
In Europe, the group rehearsed or performed most days and performed 17 concerts in 21 days. They performed pieces such as Tanczy, Der Damon, Libertango, and As Summer Was Just Beginning (click on links to listen the group performing these pieces on youtube).
The group also had time to sightsee and observe another culture—visiting castles and cathedrals, and biking in villages and countryside. Though Sara saw lots of churches in Germany, she learned that most people do not attend religious services regularly and that even an extremely devout Christian may only go to a formal church service 2-5 times a year. On several occasions she stayed in homes and has maintained contact with her host families via Facebook.
Now back at Bethany for her senior year of high school, Sara continues to develop her skills not only on the bassoon, but in conducting—working with instrumental music teacher Barbara Slagel. Sara’s career goal is to study instrumental music education in college and eventually work in a university setting.