Introducing Meredith Kufchak

Meredith KufchakWhere are you from?

I’m from Westerville, Ohio. Westerville is a suburb of Columbus, and it’s not very interesting, except that it has an uptown instead of a downtown and really good ice cream.

Are you a current Rice student? If not, what is your association with Rice?

I am a 4th year undergraduate at Rice University.  I’m actually the fourth one of my siblings to attend Rice and the Shepherd School of Music!

Why did you choose to play viola?

I come from a very musical family. Both of my parents play for fun, and all of my siblings play string instruments and chose music related careers. I started playing the viola when I was four years old. I don’t remember why I chose the viola over any other instruments, but my sister who is a year older than me was playing viola, so I probably wanted to do everything that she was doing.

Where and with whom have you previously studied, and who is your current teacher?

I previously studied with Deborah Price in Worthington, Ohio. My current teacher is Ivo van der Werff.

What are your favorite viola pieces and why?

Brahms’s Two Songs for Alto, Viola, and Piano, Op. 91. They are incredibly beautiful, and the timbres of the viola and alto are perfect together.

Ideally where would you like to be in 10 years’ time?

I would love to be playing in a string quartet.

What do you like about Rice and the Shepherd School of Music?

I love the Shepherd School because of its supportive environment. The faculty members are all wonderful musicians and teachers, and it’s great to see the school growing and improving every year.

Who is the maker of your instrument and bow?

My viola was made by Ken Sullivan in Rochester, NY.

If you didn’t play the viola, what instrument would you play?

I would play the cello, because it’s such a beautiful sounding instrument, and there is so much good repertoire.

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