Boulder City Magazine is a monthly publication full of information about Boulder City and Southern Nevada. Boulder City Magazine features the Boulder City Home Guide, a real estate guide to Boulder City and Southern Nevada.

A Kid's View
by Giovanni Venezia

A Life Changing Experience

Last month, I participated in the Clark County School District Honor Orchestra. It was an amazing experience. I benefited on so many levels, really strengthening my passion for music. I was challenged, given something to “raise the bar” to. The entire thing was life changing.

It was the first day of the school year. My orchestra teacher told us all the events in the year, mentioning the honor orchestra. Although, he strongly warned us the difficulty and the skill level required to get into this orchestra. The thought of even trying was at zero interest.

Paperwork to audition had been sent to the string teachers around mid-September. My teacher presented the paperwork to anyone who wanted to try out, and I told him, “I simply want to audition just for fun, take a risk”. This was quite a high risk. To even look at the short audition excerpts hurt my eyes. I thought there was little chance of acceptance. Although, I practiced hard with my first private teacher, Whitney Hilton. I never gave up.

I auditioned, feeling I had done way better than expected. Although, I was amazed a week later in realizing I had been accepted. We received the music, and I was baffled at the difficulty, the music being of high school level. The first rehearsal came, and I couldn’t even play along. There was immense stress, and I practiced hours with teachers, recordings, and myself.

The week of the concert came. I practiced hard, and the performance made me realize my passion for music, as it was incredibly beautiful and fun (in the top 5 of these types of Junior High groups in the country according to our conductor). I got the pleasure of being under the baton of Dr. Robert Gillespie, a string teaching hero in the eyes of many. I want to thank the directors, Mrs. Barbara James and Ms. Hekkert, as well as all my music teachers, Mr. W, Mr. T, Mrs. Hilton, and Ms. Susan Barton (my new private teacher). Although there was something one of the conductors said that really got my attention. Music and sporting brings people together. Music brought us young musicians together, just for the reward of music itself. What an amazing and powerful experience.

If you have any questions or comments, e-mail me at

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