ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Violin plays big part in Figliuzzi's life

Ava Figliuzzi Grade: Junior. Age: 17. Art focus: Brainerd High School Chamber Orchestra. Adviser nomination: "Ava is Concert Master for the BHS Chamber Orchestra and is a member of the Minnesota Youth Symphony and the Minnesota All-State Orchestr...

Brainerd High School junior Ava Figliuzzi smiles as she holds a violin. Figliuzzi has played the violin since age 4 and she is Concert Master for the BHS Chamber Orchestra and is a member of the Minnesota Youth Symphony and the Minnesota All-State Orchestra. (Jennifer Stockinger)
Brainerd High School junior Ava Figliuzzi smiles as she holds a violin. Figliuzzi has played the violin since age 4 and she is Concert Master for the BHS Chamber Orchestra and is a member of the Minnesota Youth Symphony and the Minnesota All-State Orchestra. (Jennifer Stockinger)

Ava Figliuzzi

Grade: Junior.

Age: 17.

Art focus: Brainerd High School Chamber Orchestra.

Adviser nomination: "Ava is Concert Master for the BHS Chamber Orchestra and is a member of the Minnesota Youth Symphony and the Minnesota All-State Orchestra, where she serves as first violinist in both orchestras. She also takes private lessons with a Minnesota Orchestra violinist and teaches private lessons to students. She also performs in trio in the community and performs various solo competitions."

ADVERTISEMENT

Memorable fine arts achievement: "Performing side by side with the Minnesota orchestras.

"One thing that I am looking forward to is the Minnesota Youth Symphony is going to Cuba in 2017 so I am looking for to that."

How has playing the violin changed your life: "It has changed my life. I decided it was a big enough thing that it is what I want to do and that is why I am looking at music schools. The violin is my life, or at least a big part of it ... It is something I enjoy."

How much of your time is spent on the violin: "I spend about 20 hours a week practicing the violin between my high school classes and the Minnesota orchestra practices."

How long have you been getting private lessons: "I've taken private lessons since eighth grade. I was taking lessons with (former BHS orchestra director) Grant Wilcox here at the high school and he recommended I go down there. He wanted me to play at a higher level. I go every week on Saturday. It's tough, but it is part of my lifestyle. Cecilia Belcher, is my new violin teacher in Minneapolis. I like her alot and she is helping me with my college auditions."

Tell me about the lessons you provide to students: "I have four students ages 6 to adult. They are all beginners. I hope I am a good teacher. I know I wouldn't be as good if I didn't have a teacher myself.

"My biggest influence was Grant because I was a kid when he taught me and now the kids I am teaching are the same age as I was when I was learning. All my teachers have different teaching styles and some tell you when you do something wrong right away and some cover it up ... I prefer to tell my students right away. I am more straightforward with my students."

Favorite composer: Mozart.

ADVERTISEMENT

Last song you heard: "Phantasy Quintet by Vaughan Williams."

TV show you won't watch: "I' don't like action shows that much."

Favorite children's book: "The Quiltmaker's Gift."

Dream job: "To be a professional violinist on the east coast."

Favorite holiday movie: "The original 'Grinch Who Stole Christmas.'"

Concerts for the state orchestras: "Minnesota All-State Orchestra is a camp and we do two concerts a year. Minnesota Youth Symphony practice is on Saturday and there are three concerts a year. All the concerts are in Minneapolis.

"Whenever there are Minnesota Orchestra concerts I always listen to them on the radio. It makes me feel happy knowing my teacher is in it playing and that someday I could be playing in the orchestra."

Clubs/sports: Vice president of the Key Club and I was captain of the cross country team this fall."

ADVERTISEMENT

Bad habit: "I bite my fingernails when I am nervous."

What are you looking forward to this Christmas: "Seeing my baby cousins."

Parents: Jana Austad and James Figliuzzi, both of Baxter.

JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at jennifer.stockinger@brainerddispatch.com or 218-855-5851. Follow me at www.twitter.com/jennewsgirl on Twitter.

Related Topics: BRAINERD HIGH SCHOOL
What To Read Next
Fundraising is underway to move the giant ball of twine from the Highland, Wisconsin, home of creator James Frank Kotera, who died last month at age 75, 44 years after starting the big ball.
Inmates in-custody in the Mille Lacs County jail in Milaca, Minnesota
Inmates in-custody in the Hubbard County jail in Park Rapids, Minnesota
Inmates in-custody in the Todd County jail in Long Prairie, Minnesota