Spartan Violinist


Brian Grassi

Freshman Emmet Concanon plays his violin. This past summer Concanon traveled with an orchestra across Europe.

Jay Dolan, Editor-in-Chief

As he strikes the first chord, the crowd quickly quiets down in the old church resting in the snow-capped Swiss Alps. Eyes open wide and smiles begin to grow on the bystander’s faces as he starts playing his first song of the night.

This past summer, freshman Emmet Concanon traveled Europe playing the violin with an orchestra. He visited the United Kingdom, France, Switzerland, Austria, and Germany. Concanon said he hopes his orchestra performances helped improve people’s opinion of the United States.

“They hardly knew how to speak English, but they were so happy with smiles on their faces,” Concanon said. “That was our main goal, to play for them. We could tell that they enjoyed it.”

Concanon started playing the violin in second grade. At first, Concanon was unsure whether he wanted to do it or not.

“My mom was kind of forcing me at first but I thought it would be cool because I did not play an instrument back then,” Concanon said. “I wanted to try something new.”

After a few private lessons, Concanon said he began to pick up on this new instrument.

“I started getting the hang of it, I [realized that] I do not want to be just an okay violin player,” Concanon said. “I wanted to go above and beyond.”

After a small $100 gig in the history museum in downtown St. Louis, Concanon came to a realization.

“At first I was nervous to play, so I kept telling myself I could do it,” Concanon said. “Then I thought I should keep going because maybe I could make this a career.”

According to Concanon playing the violin is not easy.

“It takes hard work and dedication,” Concanon said. “Dedication is the most important thing because you need to practice if you want to be good at it.”

At the end of the day, playing the violin is just another hobby of Concanon’s, but he hopes people come to realize that the violin is a fun instrument to play.

“Not a lot of people play it but I think it is cool,” Concanon said. “It would be cool if more people try it out. I feel very lucky to have played the violin.”