Ansel Norris and Joe LeFevre – ep. 14

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For this installment of “Winning the Job”, I was able to talk with Ansel Norris and Joe LeFevre. Ansel recently won second trumpet with the Naples Philharmonic and Joe won principal tuba with the Kansas City Symphony. Congrats to both of them!

Being able to interview Ansel about his success was really special for me. He and I were at Northwestern at the same time, and when you heard him play, you just knew he was going to be a super star. His very first solo class as a freshman, he played the Jolivet concertino. I was so mad at him :). It was wonderful to talk with him about his success and find out he had to decide he was really going to take it seriously and work as hard as he could to win the audition. I identify with that sentiment so much, as I’m currently preparing for the Chicago Symphony principal audition. I realized although I’ve worked hard for previous auditions, I may not have worked as hard as I possibly could for them. Ansel was inspiring to me in that way!

As a complete opposite to Ansel, I didn’t know Joe at all when I talked with him. It’s always really amazing to see how giving great musicians can be with their time and thoughts. The thing that stuck out to me about Joe preparation is he wanted to be so prepared in every way, he even wanted to practice under conditions that would mimic being nervous at an audition. He actually ran around the building in an effort to get his heart rate up, so he would be prepared if he had that happen in the audition. Some people may think that is a bit much, but Joe won the job, and it’s hard to say whether or not that was an integral part in his success. I learned from him that you should be willing to turn over every stone in an effort to make sure you’re prepared for everything an audition can throw at you.

Here’s a Spotify playlist of some music these guys have been listening to

Ansel Norris and Joe LeFevre – ep. 14

Until next time,

Ryan