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2017 to 2019


Gabriel, Student Profile Picture, School of Choral Studies
Home Page Feature: 


1. Why NYSSSA? 

NYSSSA is a unique place that helps you develop pre-professional musical skills that can benefit your life in music in incredible ways. I auditioned for NYSSSA because I wanted to try out for something unlike typical summer programs. Once I got in, I decided to attend because of how passionate I was about music and how much I loved meeting new people. For me, there was no better place to do that than NYSSSSA. 

2. How did you find out about NYSSSA?

 I found out about NYSSSA through my friend Alana who attended NYSSSA: SCS in the summer of 2015. She told me about how it was the best summer of her life and thought it would be perfect for me.  

3. Typical Day/Schedule at NYSSSA? 

A typical day at NYSSSA starts with breakfast and morning warm-ups. Then we move to musicianship classes, onto mixed choir rehearsal, and then break for lunch. After that, we come back for another mixed choir rehearsal, then split to SA/TB choir rehearsals, have practice time, and finish off with Theater Arts classes. In the evenings, we’ll have dinner and then attend a seminar, recital, or recreational activity. The seminars range from topics such as vocal health to audition etiquette, the recitals are a mix of student, ResLife, and faculty recitals, and the recreational activities run from games of “Capture the Flag” to NYSSSA: SCS’s infamous Big Dipper ice cream runs.  

4. Best moment at NYSSSA? 

Every moment at NYSSSA is special. One of my best memories there was in my third summer at NYSSSA in 2019. I decided I wanted to teach everyone how to dance some of the typical Central American dances that I grew up doing. I told everyone to come downstairs and suddenly 60 students who had only met a few days prior were dancing the night away together, laughing, smiling, and having the time of their lives.  

5. Why would you encourage someone to audition for NYSSSA? 

I would encourage anyone who has an interest in singing, theater, or musical arts in general to audition for NYSSSA. In just one summer, I gained knowledge about different parts of music that I had never heard before. By the end of my three summers with NYSSSA, I grew as a musician in ways I never imagined. I worked with some of the nation’s top music educators and artists and learned things I will never forget. However, the biggest reason I’d motivate someone to come to NYSSSA is because of the people you meet. To quote Dr. High Floyd, our Artistic Director, “The best gift we give you is each other,” and this could not be truer. NYSSSA has given me most of, if not all of my best friends. The relationships you develop here are unlike any other. These are the people I do life with every day, no matter how far apart we may be. They’re the kind of friends you can see in 5 years for the first time and be able to catch up and feel as if you never left each other. You create a family. You grow close through watching the sunset together at 3 Man Hill, spontaneous Super Smash Bros tournaments, and through the power of music. If you’re looking for a special place to spend your summer, go to NYSSSA. You will forever be happy you did.