13-year-old Breckenridge resident takes on Mozart
If you go
What: Summit Community Orchestra Spring Concert
When: 4 p.m. Sunday
Where: Dillon Community Church, 371 La Bonte St., Dillon
Info: The free performance will feature the winner of the Youth Concerto Competition, Isaac Webster, playing the Andante movement of the Mozart Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major with the Summit Community Orchestra.
At 13 years old, Isaac Webster practices piano daily, usually for about 15-20 minutes in the mornings before school, and he often continues tapping out the notes and rhythms in his head with his fingers on the desk in front of him during class.
Described by his parents as good student, the boy from Breckenridge with a taste for jazz and classical compositions admitted that sometimes his finger tapping gets on his teachers’ nerves, and they have to ask him to stop. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not too big of a deal, but all that practice has apparently paid off, as Isaac can already play both the piano and violin — and play them well.
He plays so well, in fact, that he will be featured for a piano solo Sunday when the Summit Community Orchestra performs at Dillon Community Church. The free performance begins at 4 p.m.
Isaac won the right to perform with the orchestra that encompasses an eclectic group of musicians — including teachers, community members and a number of retired professionals — by coming out on top in the Youth Concerto Competition.
It can be intimidating playing with people three to five times his senior, Isaac said, but the orchestra has been more than welcoming to the young talent.
“It’s a little intense,” Isaac said of playing with the group of seasoned musician. “I get a little nervous around them because they are really good at playing their instruments, but they are nice to me.”
For Sunday’s recital, the Summit Middle School student will take on the Andante movement of the Mozart Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major. Complicated as it may be, it’s also one of Isaac’s favorite pieces.
“This was one of (Mozart’s) favorite concertos so I’m honored to be playing it with the orchestra,” Isaac said, while explaining that he loves the intricate patterns and notes that come with classical music.
“He doesn’t do rock,” Isaac’s dad, Bill Webster said of his son. “He’s not Billy Joel or Elton John.”
“But he likes classical, bluesy and jazzy things too,” added Isaac’s mom, Lisa, who credits a lot of her son’s development as a musician to the great wealth of opportunity in the community.
Isaac has been studying piano since at least July 2011 and with Melanie Lowrey since 2013. He participated in the Summer Music Exploration and Scale the Summit Camps, and he has played in the National Federation Junior Festivals, as well as for the Guild National Piano Playing Auditions at Lord of the Mountain Church in Dillon. Currently, he plays with his school’s jazz band.
In addition to piano, he studies violin with Angie Jansen and Mark Clark, and plays in the Summit Middle School String Orchestra and Summit Youth Orchestra.
“The thing about modern music is it repeats the rhythm a lot, but in classical it has a bunch of different notes and rhythms, which makes the whole piece have different moods and emotions,” Isaac said of why he prefers Mozart over rock and pop.
His parents both said they are impressed by their son, whose favorite subjects in school are math and science. He hopes to become a physicist or synthetic biologist some day.
Aside from music, Isaac enjoys his schoolwork and performing in the Backstage Theatre’s “School of Rock” youth musical. It’s a full load, but Isaac doesn’t seem to let it faze him. Instead, he’s pumped.
“I think (members of the audience) are going to love it a lot,” he replied when givena chance to plug Sunday’s show. “They are going to be so jealous of a 13-year-old playing Mozart.”
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