M Stories

M Stories: Annabelle Marquis, Youngest Musician in Junge Münchner Symphonike

On November 26th, Annabelle Marquis joined the Junge Münchner Symphonike on violin to perform a 40-minute arrangement of Sinfonie Nr. 9 ("Aus der neuen Welt") by Antonin Dvorak in the Herkulessaal der Residenz.  12-year-old Annabelle was the youngest member of the orchestra.  She was joined by fellow MIS students, 8th-grader Hyun Kyung and 12th-grader Charlotte Wunn Casado, both playing the cello. 

In order to audition for this opportunity, the students were required to learn a complex music piece from Symphony Nr. 9 with only two weeks' notice and attend a full day’s trial rehearsal to qualify to join the orchestra.  MIS is honored to see Annabelle, Hyun, and Charlotte selected to join the symphony and represent our school. 

The Junge Münchner Symphonike has been led for 20 years by Bernhard Koch, conductor of the ensemble Camerata Munich.  Junge Münchner Symphonike performs demanding classical and romantic works four times annually.  The orchestra is comprised of talented pupils, students from all faculties, graduates of conservatories and music colleges as well as professional musicians.   

In addition to the pressure of performing with this elite orchestra, our participating musicians had only a few weeks to learn the 40-minute arrangement.  Thankfully, Annabelle and her peers have been preparing for this moment for many years.  Annabelle joined MIS in Early Childhood 4/5.  In 1st-grade, her musical journey began with the Student Life Programme after-school-activity, Beginner Strings.     

Annabelle is currently training with MIS’s Shinnie Lee, a masters in solo viola and orchestral music from Saarbrücken University of Music in 2009.  As a professional musician, Shinnie has performed with various orchestras such as the 'Radiosymphony Orchestra Saarbrücken', the 'Pfalztheater' in Kaiserslautern, the 'Munich Radio Orchestra' and toured as a chamber musician and soloist throughout Asia, Europe, the USA and Turkey.  You can see her performing currently in Candlelight Concerts in Munich and Augsburg and with BPM, a Munich-based international string ensemble.  MIS is proud to be able to work with elite music coaches such as Shinnie who are successful in preparing MIS students for a larger stage.   

Annabelle reflects on her experience with Junge Münchner Symphonike, saying “everyone was really nice and accepting.  The other members of the orchestra were in their 20s; and I am 12, but it was fun because they were encouraging”.  The orchestra kicked off their rehearsals at the beginning of November with a bootcamp retreat to Austria for a long weekend.  Subsequently, the orchestra members rehearsed in different performance halls around Munich twice weekly, in the evenings.  

“Performing with a large group made me like playing even more”, says Annabelle.  “There were so many people watching, and because it wasn’t just me performing, I didn’t feel scared”.  Annabelle attests that it was a very powerful experience to perform as an orchestra of around 50 musicians, and it has motivated her to work harder and perform with the Junge Münchner Symphoniker again in the summer.  Stay tuned for more information from the Student Life Programme on upcoming performances featuring dedicated MIS musicians like Annabelle, Hyun, and Charlotte. 

A special thanks goes to Mariana Beleaeva, MIS orchestra leader and initiator of the collaboration between Junge Münchner Symphoniker and MIS. Her extensive experience as a violinist and concertmaster within the culture-epicenter of Munich has provided enormous value to our students. 

*If your child has experience playing a string, brass, woodwind, or percussion instrument and would like an opportunity to rehearse and perform with a large orchestra at the Herkulessaal der Residenz, please email slp@mis-munich.de or see Kerry Lightfoot in the SLP Office in the FAB. 

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