Student Spotlight: Hailey Rivera |

Student Spotlight: Hailey Rivera

Parachute native Hailey Rivera is a senior at Grand Valley High School and has been playing the clarinet for seven years. She and her classmates will participate in a combined middle and high school band concert at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 8 at Cardinal Hall.

What drew you to clarinet?

My old band director played the clarinet, and it really interested me. Plus, it was on the show “Spongebob,” so I thought it must be pretty cool. I tried it out and loved it ever since. I can’t imagine myself with another instrument. I like the challenges it gives you. There’s a lot of different keys and buttons you can press to make different sounds or even the same note.

What music do you listen to?

I listen to all varieties and eras, and my favorites are with the clarinet and also the piano, which I’m starting to learn as well. There’s this song that we just started doing called “Willows of Winter.” It’s really pretty, and there’s a beautiful solo that shows what the clarinet can do.

What are your plans next year?

I’ve been looking at CMU, mainly. I’ve been involved with their music program because they do “Best of the West,” which is like an honor band for kids from all around. This year, my goal is to get into the second band. I got first chair in the third band last year. The competition is mostly with yourself; you make a lot of friends.

Any other interests?

Besides music, I think science is my favorite. I really like anatomy. I’m a people person, so I just like learning about the human body and what it can do. It’s cool to know what’s actually going on instead of just what the doctors say to you.

What are your long term plans?

I might go into the forensic sciences. Some people think working in a lab is kind of boring, but I think I’d do really well there. I don’t feel like I’m going to be a professional musician, and I’m OK with that. Music is good for you, and I believe in that, so I want to continue on playing my whole life.

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