Fine tuned Fridays

Informal piano performance offers entertainment for students, new opportunities for Fine Arts Academy strand


Dave Winter

Junior Isa Pirkey performs her duet piece with junior and fellow piano major Isabella Aleman Ward during the Fine Arts Friday piano recital.

Alice Scott and Ingrid Smith

Over the past two months, the Fine Arts Academy has put on a series of Fine Arts Friday events to showcase the work of the different programs. The weekly events that take place during lunch began on April 14 and came to a close last Friday.

“The performances are usually very intense and I get super stressed about it because it’s just me and I’m on a big stage,” junior piano major Isa Pirkey said. “But with this one, since it was just in the hallway and people were just walking by, it was definitely more low-key and less stressful, but still very fun.”

Members of the piano program performed in the main hallway on April 21.

“I think it was really enjoyable because letting people hear my music makes me feel accomplished because I did it and people actually saw it,” freshman piano major Kai Jimenez said. “I get really nervous whenever I play in front of people, but it gives me a lot of practice and it allows me to become a better player overall.”

I get really nervous whenever I play in front of people, but it gives me a lot of practice and it allows me to become a better player overall.

— freshman Kai Jimenez

Freshman piano I student Nash Wegner overheard the concert happening in the main hallway and asked if he could join in.

“When I see a piano in public, it just draws me to it,” Wegner said. “I want to play it for people.”

After the piano majors finished their performances, Wegner stepped up and played “Claire De Lune,” the piece he had prepared for his last recital.

“I said, ‘Make sure to let the majors play first’ because I was not sure if they wanted to play anything else,” Jimenez said. “At the end, they were trying to pick up but I insisted that he should play because I know he’s a really good player.”

For Wegner, the event was not only a performance opportunity but a chance to learn from piano majors.

“I mean they’re really good, so I was kind of nervous,” Wegner said. “I went on the New York trip with them. They’re like teachers to all the piano majors. It was really cool seeing how they play and the emotion behind it.”

In addition to displaying the skills of individual piano majors, the event also gave exposure to the whole Fine Arts Academy.

“I think it is really important to get more McCallum students interested in the fine arts program in general,” Pirkey said. “Especially in the piano program. It’s so small and something like this, hopefully, will help inspire students to actually join.”

Videography and photography by Gergő Major and Dave Winter. Reporting by Morgan Eye.