Mallorie Stringfellow, 22, is a graduating senior music education major from Broomfield who has had a passion for music since the 7th grade. She started on the piano when she was nine, but then fell in love with the clarinet two years later.
“Music has always been my thing,” Stringfellow said.
The University Center of the Arts provides Stringfellow with a unique learning experience. For one, the isolated building on Remington creates a community.
“It’s really busy over there,” Stringfellow said. “There’s always stuff going on. It’s kind of cool because everyone in the building knows each other, or at least, you may not know who they are, but you recognize them. It’s nice to have people all around you that you know.”
This bonding can be emotionally beneficial during times of stressful performances.
“It can get crazy in there,” Stringfellow said. “People will have meltdowns and freak out, but it’s OK because you have all of your friends right there, instead of being alone on campus.”
Second, close relationships are formed by students who are in the same classes throughout their college career. Stringfellow has been with the same group of students and professor in her clarinet studio class for the last seven semesters.
“We’ve gotten really close over the last couple of years,” she said.
In addition to the studio class, students also take weekly lessons with the professor.
“You practice to learn the music that he gave you during your lessons along with the studio music and then you give a senior recital at the end of your senior year,” Stringfellow said.
Unless the student plans on going to graduate school, that performance acts as a university capstone.
“It’s all culminating to that,” Stringfellow said.
Stringfellow completed her senior recital last semester. She used her recital as a way to practice for graduate school.
“I auditioned for a bunch of grad schools this year with the same pieces, so it was a good way to prepare,” Stringfellow said.
She applied to Baylor, University of North Texas, Arizona State University and Indiana University. She is still waiting to her back from the universities. The majority of the recital consisted of classical pieces, but Stringfellow had the chance to perform a contemporary solo clarinet piece.
“It was silly and crazy and fun,” Stringfellow said. “It went really well and I was happy with it.”
Since she got her recital out of the way, Stringfellow is student teaching this semester. For the first eight weeks, she taught at Harris Park Elementary School in Westminster and now she’s finishing the year at Rocky Top Middle School in Thornton.
While she simply enjoys teaching and playing music for people of any age, she prefers to teach the older kids in middle school.
“It’s really fun in middle school because the vast majority of kids want to be in the class,” Stringfellow said. “They’re really excited about playing music. It makes for a fun and exciting environment. They want to be there and want to learn.”
Collegian Entertainment Reporter Jefferson Geiger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.