My Musical Journey: Aharren Torres

The Journey to music and with music for me has been a roller coaster of ups and downs but I have always cherished it being in my life.

When I was about 9 I wandered into the closet of my dads storage room outside our house and behold, I found junk, and a lot of it. I was just about to leave once I found a random thing to play with when under a huge box was a little beat up piano missing 3 or 4 keys. To be honest I did not think it was going to work, and well, it didn’t. I took it form there regardless and brought it to my room secretly trying to get it to work. 3 hours, 12 batteries, a hammer, a screwdriver and a tape of Scooby-doo later and Presto, I had a working electric piano.

I would play this thing twenty- four seven. It was something so new and awesome to me seeing as how the only music I really knew was choir music from school and the recorder (which I loathed). The piano was different though it was mine and I loved it.

Now the pianos volume itself wasn’t great so I had to play really loud to even hear it. This is why when my parents found out one day they were shocked to even know I played an instrument in general. After my dad heard me play some weird song I made he decided to put me in lessons.

Life as I new it would change from this point on. Meeting my new piano teacher was traumatic for me cause I was incredibly shy and had just a touch of social anxiety. Nonetheless I played for her and she loved it. In just one year I played through 6 books of her series so that’s when classical music came in. It was much harder and to be honest I hated it. Mainly its cause I wasn’t where my heart was in music. Regardless I went through it but now instead of going through pieces in 1 or 2 weeks it was 6 or 7 months. I wanted to learn so much more but it was like climbing hills to climbing Mount Everest after we left those series books. After staying on a song I could play back and forth memorized for 1 year, I quit. There was nothing for me now there I hadn’t learned anything new in 3 years there and I knew there was so much more.

Being 12 now I tried to get through some songs by myself but found all these weird symbols Id never seen before and nothing I played sounded right. The music was all wrong and unfortunately I quit piano after 3 or 4 months of this.

2 years later at 15 after a particularly hard day I found myself at the piano and started to play. I knew no songs now but ever since I started I’ve been able to improvise music on the spot. Well cause of this I started making songs and my love was back but this time I wouldn’t let go. I ended up joining the jazz band, which was astronomically different then classical and I loved it. It was just really hard though. Regardless I pushed through learning everything I needed by myself. It wasn’t till I was asked to cover a harp part on piano for the Wind Ensemble of UTPA that I got a taste of true music, the kind that makes you explode from the amount of emotion and power in it.

This is where I meet the man who would be my new teacher. He was playing the piano part. I had never seen anyone play so fast, loud yet controlled and beautiful. It was awesome. I knew I wanted to be like that and when he came up to me saying I’d like you to join my studio at UTPA, I was excited.

4 years later and with the help of my professor I understand why music is so important and how to convey the feelings and power in the music itself. I am now the piano player of the very Wind ensemble that needed me to play with them all those years ago and am a proud teacher of music myself. Its truly a great and wonderful experience.