Priscilla joined the Santa Cruz Symphony in 1981 when it was still a community orchestra and has seen the orchestra grow significantly over the years. As with so many musicians, her interest started early.
“I wanted to take violin lessons when I was four. Mrs. Low (a Suzuki violin teacher) and her 3 children moved in two houses down from me. As my father had recently passed away, I went everywhere with them: lessons, workshops, recitals, concerts, Hebrew School, you name it! I started asking for violin lessons immediately, but my mom didn't see the point. I was the youngest of 7 children. Since my dad had been a jazz pianist, my older siblings were all made to take music lessons. Most didn’t stick with it. I asked repeatedly, with no change in the "No" answer. When I had to transfer to the public school across the street from us, the music teacher invited me to look at the shelves in her closet and said: "Which instrument would you like?" That was the best question I had ever heard!
“My sister, Kathy gave me the $2 to rent the 3/4 size violin for the semester. Mrs. Low's daughter, Dafna, showed me all the Suzuki basics so I could sit my mother down when she got home from work - first to bow out of respect, demonstrate rest position, then transition to playing the best version of Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star my 8 year old self could muster. I talked through every objection she had, and when we were able to get a discount on weekly lessons, I was finally able to start studying violin.”
Visiting elementary schools and playing the Youth and Family concerts side-by side with the Youth Symphony is her favorite part of the season. “Studying music is a lifelong pursuit, my goal is to keep playing violin and viola for as long as I possibly can.”