Students striking a chord: Overcoming challenges to play music


Brudvick, ’25, playing guitar at a concert. Photo courtesy of Brudvick.

Nerves pulsed through Freshman Abby Brudvik during her first performance, opening for a 90s cover band in the Metro lot. She only performed one song, and her fears were realized when she messed up. She knew it couldn’t get any worse than that.

Brudvik is a talented musician, though she didn’t grow up in a musical family.
With supportive parents, persistence, practice and perseverance, she is musically involved outside of school.

Brudvik received a guitar for one of her birthdays and her parents also enrolled her in piano class in third grade and she has been playing since.

“For saxophone, my dad used to have one and I found it and then learned it for fifth grade band,” Brudvik said.

Playing saxophone and piano simultaneously posed a challenge to Brudvik. The two instruments are polar opposites and she felt as if she was starting over while learning both. It was difficult for her to get used to playing the guitar because it hurt and her hands weren’t used to putting that much force onto something.

Luckily, playing many instruments, singing, songwriting and performing paid off. She now plays guitar for two seperate bands at the School of Rock, a local music school. The environment at School of Rock is positive and friendly and Brudvik was able to make friends easily.

“I became really good friends with my friend there really fast because I think when you’re playing music with someone, the relationship just forms stronger,” Brudvik said.

Sophomore Calvin Ferrari is musically inclined differently. He makes electronic dance music and likes to DJ, which he started at just nine years old.

“[DJ-ing] basically is mixing two tracks together and making them sound good, it’s very cool, the feeling, you can like create things that nobody has ever heard.” Ferrari said.

Ferrari enjoys producing more, even though he tries to DJ at least one hour per day.

Electronic Dance Music (EDM) is the type of music mostly heard at the club or as background music for party/club scenes in movies or TV shows, it’s pretty popular and he finds ways to connect with others that enjoy the music he puts out.

“I’ve actually met a lot of people through music, online, and around, mostly from online, they listen to my music, they like it, and we just start talking,” Ferrari said.

Like Ferrari, Sophomore Mac Rapach is also a producer. But differently, he produces all of his music on his phone.

He also produces music for films, whether they’re his own films or others. On his birthday, he randomly had an idea to head to Utah and shoot a film. He then produced the music in the background for the videos he scored.

Rapach’s parents are invested in their son’s passion.

“They’re really supportive. I mean, whenever I have an idea, they’re all for it as long as it’s not too crazy,” Rapach said.

Rapach, who plays the keyboard, electric guitar and bass, has only played music since 2019.

Rapach truly appreciates the beauty of music.

“I rarely do things without listening to music. Like, literally if I go to brush my teeth I have to play a song,” Rapach said.

As a music enthusiast, Rapach claims his producing style is a little messy as he’s still discovering his aesthetic. Sometimes he’ll produce something funky and groovy, then he’ll go on and make a rock song.

With passions like these, anything is possible for these three musicians.

“It started [as a hobby] but I’m trying to make it my future,” Ferrari said.