Hailey Shepherd, 15, plays the cello, piano, and is currently teaching herself to play the guitar.
Hailey has been playing music for most of her life. She has been playing the cello for 6 years, the piano for 2 years, and she’s been teaching herself to play the piano for 8 months so far.
Music has been this young girl's passion since she picked up her first instrument. She's gone as far as to play at school and in front of her whole church. Her friends admire her for sticking through the long hours of practice and for how talented she is, including fellow sophomore Tiawna Terkelson. Tiawana states, “Saying that she plays 3 instruments I mean...that takes talent!”
The young student has a lot of free time, since she does not participate in any sports. In her free time, she either draws or, of course, practices. It seems like this may be more than just a hobby, considering she practices for 45 minutes a day.
Hailey’s music passion started in fifth grade. One day, as a special surprise, her teacher, Mrs. McKenna, brought in a cello and played for the whole class. Hailey found herself entranced with the beautiful music and sounds that the instrument made, and decided in that moment that she would play it, too.
After that first experience, Hailey took up private lessons, having her teacher occasionally help her after school when she had the time. And since then, she's never been able to stop playing music.
Hailey states that her uncle also played a huge role in her musical experience. He has inspired her to play music, saying that, “My uncle played in a symphony and so I felt like I could someday play in one.”
Shepherd could go on and on about how her uncle inspires her and is her idol. Her mother also had an important part with her learning and playing the piano. Hailey says that, “Piano wasn't my choice My mom signed my step dad, my brother, and I up for piano lessons and eventually I actually wanted to play.”
The way her uncle inspired her happened when she decided one day to attend a symphony in which he was performing. She found herself amazed with how the music made her feel, thus giving her uncle the title of who inspires her the most.
Hailey plays the guitar as well. Hailey says, “We had a guitar kind of in a corner untouched so I decided to pick it up and start playing.” Ever since then, she's been playing the guitar, saying that she's been noticing how other people play and wants to get that tune herself. Even her best friend Tiawna says, “She could definitely go far if she wanted to with her music career.”
Hailey just hasn't been doing music for herself. She has become involved at the East Oregon Symphony. She volunteered there simply because she wanted to help aspiring musicians. In this role, Shepherd has helped kids practice, tuning their instruments, helping them with certain notes, and even playing some instruments herself a little. At the end of this experience, she was paid but she didn't care about the money, she was there for the music, which goes to show how dedicated she is.
As an aspiring musician, Hailey has made a small name for herself among her peers and her family. After already learning the cello and the piano, she is also teaching herself the guitar. Many can say that she is a talented individual and many of her friends believe that she can become a professional musician. Her passion is music and she finds it fulfilling to play.