Today is International Bassoon Day, so we’re celebrating our bassoonists! First up, joining the Rogue Valley Symphony for the first time this season, our new Principal Bassoon, Sebastian!
Question 1: Could you tell me a little bit about yourself?
[I] grew up in rural Costa Rica [and] left for the USA at 19 to study bassoon. I have lived in Louisiana, Boston, Mexico, Vietnam and now the west coast of USA.
Question 2: What brought or inspired you to pursue bassoon? If you’d like to share one of your favorite pieces of music as well, I’d like to know!
There’s something about complicated/intricate looking wind instruments I’ve always liked. Besides developing solid musicianship a bassoonist has to constantly and consistently craft much needed reeds, understand their construction and behavior. I love the depth of the bassoon sound and how well it blends with others instruments. One of my favorite pieces is “Knoxville summer of 1915” for soprano and small orchestra by Samuel Barber based on a poem by the famous Americans writer James Agee. It magically captures the simplicity of being a child and the early American fascination for automobiles.
Question 3: What do you enjoy most about being with the Rogue Valley Symphony?
I haven’t officially joined the RVSO because my work permit was delayed but now I’m all set to go and really looking forward to my first rehearsal!
Question 4: What do you do when you’re not playing music i.e. what are your hobbies or interests?
Besides the bassoon and reed making (which is a huge part of being a bassoon player) I’m also an avid runner, passionate learner of biology, evolution and history. I also love hanging out with my wife and watching mixed martial arts together.
Question 5: Finally, one unusual fact, story, or tidbit about you or your instrument?
I started playing the French horn but was in need of braces and the only other spot available was for bassoon so I made the switch.