Artist of the Week: Bethany Le
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Bethany Le has been practicing music since before she ever left the womb—her musically-inclined parents used to play and sing for her before she took her first breath. A senior music major from Carlsbad, California, Le grew up with music all around her, and accepted it as a part of life rather than seeing it as a career. Her parents played their homemade CD’s, which she got to see being created as well, and both parents play in chapel and sing.
Le began taking piano lessons at the age of seven with the same instructor all throughout high school. During high school, she also sang in choir, participated in musical theatre productions, and made singing in church a large part of her Sundays.
Before coming to Westmont, Le never considered herself a singer, but rather, she thought of herself as an accompanist on the piano. Nonetheless, after receiving a music scholarship and studying with Dr. Hodson for three years, she decided to try something new and took private voice lessons—something entirely new for her. These private lessons, combined with the required choral responsibilities, helped Le to make a lot of progress on her vocal skills in a rather short period of time. Le said that vocal training is like a sport, in that “it requires that consistent, continual effort.”
Le came in to Westmont as a computer science major with a music minor, thinking that a career in science would be more realistic, but as she practiced more in the ensembles and became more familiar with the music faculty, she realized that music is what she really wanted to do with her life. Around the beginning of her junior year, Le switched her CS major and music minor to a music major and CS minor. When asked about her feelings about how Westmont’s program has helped shape her music career, Le stated, “Westmont is really good about letting music majors and non-music majors keep music as a part of their lives.”
As a sophomore at Westmont, Le made it into the chapel band, something that has proven valuable for a possible career after graduation. She enjoys working in collaboration with the chapel band leader, Eben, on creating new music. In addition, Le plays keys for the Upside Down Kingdom band on campus. It is a lot of responsibility, and Le is really looking to time off after graduation to take a break. She may pursue a PhD in music theory in her near future, but for now, Le wants to take a couple years off, stay in the area, find a job, and give her brain a break. This will also give her time to create a portfolio, do some recordings, and possibly write some new music.
Bethany’s senior recital happened this past Sunday, delivering a performance containing a culmination of her reproita from the past two years of studying music.