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Mount Pleasant student accepted in honors orchestra

  • Thursday, January 9, 2014

Sashank Sakamuri of Mount Pleasant has been accepted into the ASTA National High School Honors Orchestra. PHOTO PROVIDED

Sashank Sakamuri of Mount Pleasant has been accepted into the ASTA National High School Honors Orchestra. He is studying cello with Damian Kremer who is adjunct music faculty at the College of Charleston.

Currently, Sakamuri participates in the Charleston Youth Orchestra of the Low country, the annual regional and all-state orchestras and the chamber and jazz music ensembles at his high school. In the past, he has also played in the honorís orchestra, several chamber ensembles at the University of South Carolina, as well as Symphony Orchestra at Furman University.

For the past four years, Sakamuri has been accepted into the SCMEA regional and all-state orchestra competitions as principal and assistant principal cellist. Sashank has also applied to and received scholarships from the Charleston Symphony Orchestra League. These scholarships have allowed him to continue his private studies with Damian Kremer.

In eighth grade, Sakamuri was awarded the outstanding musicianship award and scholarship for orchestra and band camp at Furman University and won ďSuperiorĒ medals from the solo and ensemble and concert festivals. He also had the privilege to be accepted to the Charleston Symphony Orchestra Share the Stage Contest, in which he was able to perform with the CSO and renowned conductor Maestro JoAnn Falletta.

As music is one of the Sakamuriís biggest passions, he is planning on pursuing studies in music as music minor. He plans on continuing to study cello as a life-long activity.

Sakamuri is a junior at Academic Magnet High School. His parents are Srilatha Bandlamuri and Reddy Sakamuri. He has studied for the past four years with CSO Cellist Damian Kremer who is adjunct music faculty at the College of Charleston

Q: At what age did you started playing cello:

A: I started playing the cello at the age of 10. I joined the East Cooper Orchestra when I was in the fifth grade. This is where I learned the fundamentals of music and playing the cello.

Q: What other instruments do you play?

A: The only instrument I currently play is the cello, though I did try to play the guitar and violin at a younger age.

Q: Who encouraged you the most in selecting your major instrument?

A: When I was first introduced to the cello by my elementary school strings instructor, I had never heard of the instrument. Once I learned about the cello, I thought it was really cool. I would say the most encouragement came from my parents who were both supportive of my idea of trying out the cello.

Q: What ensembles are you in?

A: Currently, I participate in the Charleston Youth Orchestra of the Low country, the annual regional and all-state orchestras, and the chamber and jazz music ensembles at my high school. In the past, I have also played in the honorís orchestra, several chamber ensembles at the University of South Carolina, as well as Symphony Orchestra at Furman University.

Q: What practice tips can you pass on to other students?

A: One of the most important practice tips I can pass on to other students is to practice for themselves. Donít play because your teacher or your parents want you to. Practice because you aspire to be a better musician and want to improve. In addition, I find practicing routinely helps me ensure that I can dedicate time every day for practicing.

Q: Do you have future goals for including music/cello in a career?

A: As music is one of my biggest passions, I am planning on pursuing studies in music through a music minor. I plan on continuing to study cello as a life-long activity.

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