Brooks plays first violin, has served as our interim concertmaster, and joined us in September 2012
What is your favorite place to take friends visiting NYC?
Little Italy. It’s a favorite of my parents as well! I love how it’s a bit quieter and has a neighborhood vibe due to the blocked off streets. The food is great–and the people watching is even better.
What musical symbol best defines you and why?
I like the tenuto mark because it can have a different, even contradictory meaning (slightly detached, full value, slightly longer) depending on its context. I try to adapt to any situation, and like the tenuto, I don’t let any one characteristic or identity define me.
How long have you been playing violin?
I started the violin relatively late, in the 6th grade. I had already been playing piano and trumpet when a violin teacher moved in next door, so it seemed like fate. I managed to keep up with all three instruments throughout high school, playing in orchestra, jazz band and accompanying other students. When it came time to focus on one of them for college studies, I chose violin. To me it is the most challenging of the three, and I love the variety of colors it is capable of creating.
Question from Ron: What would you say is the most challenging aspect of your instrument? The most rewarding?
The violin is exceedingly difficult to play because of everything that can go wrong. All of the variables such as posture, bow placement, and left hand position must be synchronized in order to create a simple clear tone–and that doesn’t even account for intonation! I find the violin to be rewarding because of how effectively it works as a solo or ensemble instrument, and how seamlessly it fits into nearly every musical genre.