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Talented high school student earns spot with Sudbury Symphony Orchestra


A Grade 11 student at Marymount Academy has become the first high school student ever to join the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra’s woodwind section.

Violet Smith will make her flute debut with the SSO on Saturday in the symphony’s Christmas concert, Poems for Snow.

“This experience is really special to me,” Violet said in a news release from Marymount on Friday.

“When I started playing the flute in Grade 7, I never imagined I'd be playing with experienced professionals four years later. I am proud of myself and thankful to my music teachers at Marymount Academy who have taught and supported me on my educational journey.”

She said she has been practising every day to prepare for the concert, which will include a flute duet with Marymount Grade 7/8 music teacher Danielle Conti.

Pictured are Marymount Grade 7/8 music teacher Danielle Conti, left, Violet Smith and Grade 9/12 music teacher Emily Tokola. (Supplied)

“We have dedicated music teachers and dedicated music students and we are all proud of Violet for her hard work,” Conti said in the release.

“I’ve been with (Violet) since Grade 7 and I watched as the world threw setbacks at her that were not in her control. Despite those challenges, Violet’s enthusiasm for learning was always evident and I am so proud to see how far she has come since she first started at Marymount.”

Emily Tokola, Grade 9/12 music teacher, said the school’s music program aims to prepare students like Violet for these sorts of opportunities.


“This underscores our overarching goal -- to build a solid foundation of musical knowledge and skills, empowering students to utilize these foundations in real-life situations,” Tokola said.

Principal Cassandra Tenbergen said Violet will have lots of support Saturday.

“There are many young Regals looking forward to going out this Saturday and cheering her on from the audience,” Tenbergen said in the release.

In addition to music, Violet is co-chair of the student advisory council at Science North, participates on the basketball team, serves as the co-president of the band council, and participates in both the jazz band playing trumpet and senior concert band playing flute.

While Violet's future career aspirations lie in science and engineering, she values the importance of art and plans to apply her musical skills to other areas of her life.

“While Violet’s future career goals might not be in music, she knows the importance of it and that speaks volumes to other students that having an art outlet is essential,” Tokola said.

Tickets for the Christmas concert can be purchased here. Top Stories

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