Band Spotlight of the Month: Hina Tamaki

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As music has been a large part of Tamaki’s life, she plans to continue her interests by combining medicine and music in her future studies (Hina Tamaki).

As music has been a large part of Tamaki’s life, she plans to continue
her interests by combining medicine and music in her future studies (Hina Tamaki).

By SIARA GUNAWARDHANA
Staff Writer
Senior Hina Tamaki, first chair clarinet of the UHS Wind Symphony, began her exploration of music at a young age. When Tamaki was younger, her passion for music was inspired by her mother’s love for piano. Tamaki heard her play and aspired to one day play like her mom.
After piano, she tried other extracurricular activities such as tennis, ice skating, and horseback riding. But during middle school, Tamaki’s school band program offered her the opportunity to play any instrument she wanted. At first, she wanted to play the flute or obo rather than the clarinet. However, after trying out the instrument, Tamaki found a lasting interest in the clarinet. Throughout her clarinet career, Tamaki has performed in various ensembles. She played in the Cleveland Youth Wind Symphony in middle school and is currently in the Pacific Symphony Youth Wind Ensemble. She has also played in the High School All Southern Honors Band and All State Honors Band which select top musicians from Southern California and the whole state, respectively. She is currently competing in the “Spotlight Music Festival” and is a semi-finalist along with another UHS student.
As a result of COVID-19 restrictions, Tamaki’s last high school performances in her senior year have been more limited. The UHS Band Program has held all practices outside this year, dividing Tamaki’s bandmates into different cohorts.
“Band, in general, just doesn’t sound like a full band because there are parts missing. Half of the ensemble is missing, [so] we can’t really rehearse the best that we could,” Tamaki said.
Due to the mandatory use of bell covers, which keep bacteria from spreading in the air, band practices have become more difficult, as the covers limit the instruments’ sounds. The band sits in front of traffic when they rehearse, which poses a large distraction. Tamaki greatly misses recitals, rehearsals, concerts and more. However, she is still grateful to be playing her instrument with her peers because it is hard to keep the marching band active with the guidelines put in place.
Though Tamaki is known for her musical talent, she has a secret hobby that she loves to indulge in, which is baking. She has been able to combine her love for baking with her passion for band, always baking treats for the receptions after band concerts.
Tamaki is a talented musician who bakes delicious treats and has many aspiring goals. As Tamaki’s senior year is coming to an end, she plans for the future, as she wants to major in clarinet performance but is also passionate about medicine. She wants to study a combination of the two, exploring the ways music affects the brain. Though her final year in high school is different than she expected, she has managed to push herself to succeed and make the most of this challenging year.