Convocation for the Department of Art and Department of Design will take place at 8 a.m. on April 27
Graduating woodwind performance major Christian Tran will perform “Yellow” and “Red” from Alyssa Morris’ “Four Personalities” on oboe at the convocation for the Departments of Art and Design.
“It’s a fun piece based on the Hartman Personality test,” Tran said. “I love the jazzy, playful nature of ‘Yellow’ and the intense, driving mood in ‘Red.’ It’s a big crowd-pleaser and I hope the Art and Design students at convocation will appreciate the color references.”
Tran was drawn to music because of the “open-ended nature of the program,” which allowed him to focus on areas that interested him and were the most beneficial.
“I also love that it is a major that centers almost entirely around improving skills,” Tran said. “You can see what progress you are making and rearrange your curriculum to focus on what skills you need to improve. All learning comes with real-life experience. In a way, I think this is the ideal form of education.”
One of the most memorable experiences Tran had during his undergrad was studying in Vietnam at the Vietnam National Academy of Music, which he was able to do after receiving an ORCA grant. While in Vietnam, Tran performed, taught students and researched oboe repertoire written by Vietnamese composers.
“It was such a unique experience to take music, which has been very important to me, back to my father’s homeland and where I served as a missionary,” Tran said.
At BYU, Tran has most enjoyed being able to work one-on-one with his oboe professor. “Through working together,” Tran said, “I’ve really learned the processes behind music, interpretation and showing deeper meaning in musical performances. She’s also helped me become a more understanding, capable and empathetic person.”
When asked what he is most proud of in his academic career, Tran said, “playing the Mozart Oboe Concerto with the BYU Philharmonic. Mozart is the one composer that performers can never really get away from. There will always be a way to play Mozart more musically, more technically perfect and in a more exciting way. While my performance wasn’t perfect, I felt that walking on stage as a soloist was a big step in my progression as a musician.”
After graduation, Tran will attend graduate school in New York. He plans to pursue a career as a professor of music.
Q & A
What did you want to be when you grew up?
“I wanted to be an astronomer with a pet frog. Those two details just always went hand in hand.”
Where do you find inspiration?
“My parents. My dad for being hardworking and dedicated to his family and my mom for her thoughtfulness and support.”
What is your favorite snack?
“Peanut butter and jelly sandwich.”