Saxophonist talks upcoming live performance and how music ‘has a story behind it’

Close up of a saxophone on a table with sheet music underneath it.Jennifer Tran said she’s excited to be back in a concert hall this week for a National Arts Centre performance. Photo by Jennifer Tran.

COVID-19, Culture

Jennifer Tran is a classical saxophonist who will be playing with the National Arts Centre Orchestra in a livestream performance titled “Mighty River” on Feb. 27.

Tran is most excited to the concert hall and playing with an orchestra for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

“I’m incredibly lucky,” she said.

Tran also discussed what makes music so important to her, what music can do for people and how powerful it can be.

“Some of the music, perhaps all, has a story behind it and when you program music you’re programming somebody’s story,” she said.

Tran also said that music has the power to act as an avenue to discuss things that many people may disagree on.

“It could be a form of resistance to something,” she said.

“Music, performing or any of the arts can have a really huge impact in how we want to shape the culture in which we want to be in,” Tran said.

Tran explained that she is very fortunate to have food, shelter and a family that supports her musical endeavours during this pandemic. She said some musicians are lacking in some of the resources she has access to.

“I have a space to practice, not like some of my friends who are in school, [who] don’t even have a place to practice,” she said.

Following the interview, Tran added how musicians often struggle with being underpaid for their labour and how this issue has been exacerbated since the start of the pandemic.

Here is Jennifer Tran speaking with CHUO:

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