Interview with Kelly Haines, FAYM College Scholarship Recipient



Kelly Haines is an alumnus of Interlochen Arts Academy. She has been playing bassoon for 10 years and is currently studying for a Bachelor of Music Performance in Bassoon at Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York.

Why did you chose to play bassoon?
When I was in fifth grade my dad, who is a middle school band director, gave me the options of scholarship instruments, and I chose the bassoon because it is tall and awkward like me.

Did you attend any music camps in high school?
I went to NAU Curry summer camp the summer before I started high school. In the summer between my freshman and sophomore year of high school I went to Interlochen Summer Institutes, which is a week that you spend completely focused only on your instrument. The next two summers after that I went to Interlochen Summer Arts Camp where I spent six weeks playing in an orchestra with kids my age from all around the world.

When did you know that you wanted to do music for a career?
My first full summer at Interlochen I placed principal bassoonist in the top orchestra at camp, World Youth Symphony Orchestra, for the first concert of the summer. It was the first concert of the year and we were playing Bacchus et Ariane by Albert Roussel and the opening of the piece it starts with an exposed first bassoon part, and playing that solo for the audience gave me a feeling that I can’t really describe. It was mixture of exhilaration and a craving to do it all over again. That was the moment that I realized that I wanted to have that feeling for the rest of my life.

Describe a life experience that was made possible because of music.
I have been able to play and make friends with people all around the world. I could probably be anywhere in the world and find someone that I have either played with or know someone that I have played with.

Do you have a favorite pop tune that you like to play on your instrument? 

I really enjoy playing Darth Vader’s March from Star Wars.

Do you have a name for your instrument? 

Nope, but I used to name my reeds. My teacher’s favorite name for them was chip because at least one out of every four reeds would have a chip in it.

Who is the most famous conductor that you have played under?
I have played under JoAnn Falletta, the conductor of the Buffalo Symphony, during my first and second summer at Interlochen Arts Camp.

Who is your favorite orchestra?
The Berlin Philharmonic

Who is your role model/mentor?
My professor Mr. George Sakakeeny. He is an amazing player and even better teacher.

Do you have any pets? What do they do while you practice?
I have two dogs. I have a Siberian Husky named Beethoven and a Jack Russel Beagle mix name Lil’ Bit. (Both of them were named before they came to my family.) When I practice they howl along with me. Sometimes they are in the correct key, but most of the time they are out of tune.

If you didn’t play bassoon, what instrument would you play?
I have always wanted to try and play cello.

What is your favorite classical piece to play?
My favorite piece to play is Shostakovich’s fifth symphony. I really love playing the piece because of the message Shostakovich was trying to convey with the symphony and the fact that it has a bassoon and contrabassoon in the third movement.

What are your musical highlights from this past year at college?
My favorite musical highlights from this past year was playing Lutoslawski’s Chantefleurs et Chantefables for Soprano. I was the only bassoonist in the piece and had to switch between bassoon and contrabassoon. It was a huge learning experience.

How is playing in college different than playing in middle and high school?
There is a quicker turn around period between concerts. This past year I had to learn an hour concert in six rehearsals. This makes the rehearsals more intense and a higher level of expectation in your level preparation for the rehearsal.

How many hours a week did you practice in high school? How is practicing different now?
In high school I would practice between 2-3 hours a day and now I practice between 4-6 hours. I also spend a lot more time on reed making.

How many hours do you spend playing your instrument?
I spend about 36 hour playing my bassoon.

Where would like to see yourself in 10 years?
I would like to be in an orchestra in Europe and working with a non profit organization that works with kids and music, like FAYM.

If you could go back in time to your middle school years, what would you tell yourself?
I would tell myself to really enjoy performing every chance you get especially scale tests.

How has FAYM helped you?
FAYM has helped me by making the college of my dreams become a reality with the help of the scholarship. It has also allowed me to see the inner workings of how a non-profit organization works.

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