Duxbury High School senior Carson Lloyd has been selected to perform in the NAfME (National Association for Music Education) All East Honors Ensemble Orchestra for an audience of thousands at the Bushnell Center of the Performing Arts in Hartford Conn., April 7.
The orchestra is made up of approximately 150 of the best high school musicians in 13 Eastern states from Washington DC to Maine. Lloyd is one of five musicians selected from Massachusetts.
Lloyd began playing violin in the fourth grade in Plymouth, where he studied violin with Plymouth Philharmonic cellist Bonnie Rapier Harlow, a Duxbury High School graduate. Harlow visited the schools early in the mornings to teach students how to play their instruments and encouraged Lloyd to continue with music.
After studying with Harlow, Lloyd went on to study under Victor Romanul, violinist with the Boston Symphony and Clayton Hoener, violinist with the Boston Pops. Lloyd currently has five elementary school violin students through the school’s music programs to whom he gives half hour lessons to each week.
Mary Lynn Carson, Lloyd’s mother, said Harlow was instrumental in helping her son figure out what kind of music he wanted to play. She said she never had to remind Lloyd to practice violin, he just always picked it up.
“He was like a duck to water,” Carson said. “Usually you have to fight with kids to remind them to practice. Carson would just pick it up whenever he pleased; it added up to about two hours a day.”
Lloyd was accepted as an All-State performer in Feb- ruary 2012 and was shortly thereafter asked to apply as a candidate for the NAfME conference. Six months later, after filling out lots of paperwork and auditioning, he was accepted to the orchestra.
Over 700 high school mu- sicians in band, orchestra, treble and mixed chorus will be working on challenging music over the three days of intensive rehearsals in preparation for Sunday’s performance. These musicians will be performing under the leadership of four prominent conductors for this biennial event.
Carson said former DHS orchestra director James Vinci and current orchestra director Nick Tatarka had significant and positive impacts on Lloyd and inspired him to challenge himself.
“There are not very many schools at all that even offer orchestra,” Carson said. “Duxbury is exceptional in that way and we’ve been especially lucky to have two extraordinary orchestra directors.”
For Lloyd, who has been the first-chair violinist at DHS since freshman year, the pressure is off for a little bit and he is looking forward to the experience of working with the other members of the orchestra.
Carson, herself an artist, said she encourages her children to explore the arts and is very proud of her son for ac- complishing so much.
“Learning to play the violin can be intimidating,” she said. “He was voracious in learning and it really helped him find his voice.”
Lloyd has decided he would like to pursue a major in science in college and is currently deciding between five colleges, to which he has been accepted. Until then, he plans on continuing to play with various local groups and practicing more difficult music.