Ayi Ekhaese of Houma has done something few high school freshmen have ever done. The University View Academy ninth-grader is a member of the Louisiana Music Educators Association All-State Orchestra for Violin I section. An orchestra seating chart rates musicians, and being in the first section is an honor. Ayi is also the first UVA student selected for this prestigious group. “I’m really proud since it’s my first year and having my teachers say it is unusual for freshman students,” she gushed. Covid-19 protocols meant the auditions for the orchestra were socially distanced in November.
She says she began playing the violin when she was three because her mom wanted her to learn an instrument. Ayi says she got good at playing just by sticking with it. Typically, the All-State Orchestra would have a performance, but due to Covid-19 protocols, there is none this year. Ayi says she is disappointed about not having the orchestra perform, and it will be motivation to reapply next year in hopes of more normal times. She says music will always be a part of her life, but she aspires to become a pediatrician.