Finding Her Voice

Addie Fortin, Crown Writer

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Music has been a creative outlet for millions of people for decades. Music might be a small part of some people’s lives, but for Stephanie Villaceran (12), music came with countless hours of practicing her craft. Ever since she was a young girl, Villaceran has always known that she wanted to pursue music. Through countless hours of practicing she continued to get better and better, always pushing herself to do more. As a student at Marian who is interested in a music career, it’s an honor to be a part of Tri-M. Tri-M isn’t just about music; it also acknowledges academic achievements and keeps students more involved in their community by participating in many different service projects. Villaceran was invited by Mr. Rome, the head director of music, her sophomore year to be a part of Tri-M; she excitedly accepted, and this decision made became a major part of her experience here at Marian.

Villaceran’s interest in music was sparked at a young age and continued to grow throughout her life. “My love for choir really grew during middle school. I was a member of a community choir for a few years, and that’s where I recognized the beauty of being part of an ensemble. I was very excited to continue this art through high school.” Music has always been a major part of her life for as long as she can remember. She pulls inspiration when she plays music from the different genres of music she listens to. “I’ll play any song, but soul and R&B really resonate with me, so that’s the music I play the most.” She uses a lot of inspiration from genres like these as well as and rock, mainly from the 80’s, which she believes is the best music era.

Villaceran has always been a leader in some way at Marian, participating in Student Council and organizing many different events throughout the years. She has always had excellent academic achievements while also focusing on her music, which was why she was inducted into Tri-M. She didn’t get through Tri-M alone; she was brought under the wing of her amazing music director, Mr. Rome. Villaceran knew she needed to mentor someone the way that Mr. Rome did when she needed help. She did not mentor any one person in particular, but she always tried to lend a helping hand when it was needed. Throughout all three years that she was involved, she made many different memories with her friends that she will remember for the rest of her life. “My favorite memories through Tri-M have to be the flower sales. We all wake up extremely early on Valentine’s Day to prepare the flowers to be distributed. Although it may not sound that pleasant, it was a great time of laughter, eating doughnuts, and listening to some good music.”  Throughout her experiences, she was able to enjoy her time with her friends, but she also learned many lessons from her fellow classmates.

Villaceran not only learned valuable lessons from her fellow classmates, but she mainly learned them from her music director, Mr. Rome. “I learned that music is best experienced when you get to share it with the people around. I’ve been blessed with the best music family during my four years at Marian, and I am definitely going to miss being a part of it all.”  Mr. Rome has been a teacher at Marian for thirty-two years, and he made a mark on every student he ever taught. “The person I feel who really embodies the meaning of Tri-M, Modern Music Masters, is Mr. Rome. After all the years he has been a music teacher, his passion for this art has only grown stronger. He didn’t just teach us how to sing and read music, but he also taught us not be confined by the written score and how to use our musicality to express ourselves and our emotion. It has been an absolutely amazing time being one of his pupils, and I feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to learn from him.” Sadly he is retiring this year, but Villaceran was lucky enough to have him as a teacher for four years. She will be attending Marquette University next year, and she hopes to continue with her music for as long as she can. “I will be minoring in music, and I am excited to get a deeper understanding of music theory and composition as well as improve my technique with vocal performances.” Villaceran will have no problem transitioning from her music career in high school to college because of her love of music.

Villaceran has always been one to always push herself to be better, and Tri-M is a big part of who she has become. Tri-M became a way for her to have a creative outlet to spread her love of music. Music has always been a way for people to let out their emotions, and she uses her love of music to help spread joy through her fellow classmates, friends, and family. Whenever she is singing or playing piano, Villaceran always has a big smile on her face as she shares her talents with others.  

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