I studied abroad in Vienna for a semester during my junior year of college. I chose the program because I was interested in the culture and language of the region and because it combined opportunities in all my areas of interest. Ever since visiting Germany for two weeks after my senior year of high school, I was intrigued by the region’s language and culture, which incorporates more historic and artistic elements in everyday life than American culture does. I wanted to be able to immerse myself in the people, the buildings, the arts, the food and the education systems of Austria so I could be a part of the culture, rather than just an observer of it.
I had a lot of trouble thinking of myself as anything but a singer when I came to college. In high school, I told anyone who would listen that I wanted to be an opera singer, that I loved music, that we should talk about Maria Callas and Maria Callas only for the next three hours. Freshman year, my musical focus made my non-music classes more special to me in their rarity. I loved leaving my conservatory studies behind and venturing to the basement of the humanities building for my English classes—I felt like I was leaving myself behind to cross the street for a Humanities Vacation. It was only supposed to be something to do on the side.
I had never seen the famous basketball documentary movie Hoop Dreams until I watched it on Netflix tonight. Made in 1994, the documentary follows two young African-American NBA hopefuls, Arthur Agee and William Gates, as they mature from fourteen-year-old high school freshmen into the young men at the beginnings of their college careers.
Parents are known to play classical music while the mother is still pregnant. It is a well known fact that children do react positively to music even while in the fetal stages. Classical music is soothing to the fetus, especially when it is very active and causing the mother discomfort.