College Essay

November 5, 2011
By Anonymous

During the summer of 2010, I took an orchestral tour to Spain, Morocco, the Canary Islands, and Portugal. And it was during the summer of 2010 that I truly fell in love for the first time. As a violinist of ten years, music was always an integral part of my life and I expected this experience to only confirm my already existing sentiment for music. So, I packed my bags ready to plunge head first into a whole new world in pursuit of what I believed could be the single love of my life. However, what I did not foresee was my encounter with a lover who had been waiting quietly for quite some time.
Stepping into the Barcelona airport, I was thrown into a new world in every sense. I knew no one and I knew nothing. Even communication became difficult because the idioms and jargons of the English language that I had so painstakingly acquired were no longer relevant. Once again, I was the little immigrant girl from Korea who was drowned out by the alien voice of another nation. I reached out for my mother’s hand, the only trace of home and held on tightly. This time, however, I was alone and so I clutched the worn plastic handle of my violin case, thankful for its familiarity.
For the next few days, I visited what small refuge I knew by practicing my solos, and before I knew it, the concert had already begun. After an artful execution of the repertoire and one of my most passionate playing ever, it was over as quickly as it had started. The booming applause awoke me from my musical trance and I became aware all too suddenly of my surroundings. The spotlight shone uncomfortably brightly in my eyes and the inescapable Barcelonian lisp of the sponsor echoed through the hall adding to the nightmare. Again in my place was the little foreign girl and again, she was swallowed by a sea of unfamiliarity. She reached out for her mother’s hand but realized that her mother was nowhere to be seen. So, she cried out desperately with her little foreign voice. To her surprise, she found that the audience heard her. When she looked out into the sea again, she saw that some had tears in their eyes; others spoke with their hands, clapping in acknowledgement of the message conveyed. And in being understood, the little foreign girl felt the acceptance she sought and felt a little less foreign than before.
It was then that I realized that music was not what I pursued but rather the expression behind the music; that had been the true love of my life. Whether it is through literary jargon or musical denotation, human expression is ultimately the all inclusive language of the world. I stood proudly before the crowd and bowed a greeting to my long awaited lover.

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