Music with Scholtes

(Ryan Hueglin - Photography Manager)
(Ryan Hueglin – Photography Manager)

The Maureen Foster Recital Hall resonated to the musical stylings of Marcus Scholtes, a string professor at Wilfrid Laurier University, on Thursday Feb. 6 at noon. The Music at Noon is an on-going series within the faculty of music that occurs twice a week — Tuesday’s are the student performances while on Thursday the professors get the chance to showcase their skill.

“It is an excellent opportunity to showcase musicians and to perform,” said Scholtes.

Coming from a musically talented family, Scholtes began to play violin and piano when he was five years old. Up until the end of high school he practiced both, and after graduation chose to do all his degrees on violin. However, in the meantime he continued to practice his skills on the piano. When explaining his decision not to double major in both violin and piano during his post-secondary studies, Scholtes elaborated, “There are some people who double-major, but it can be very busy and you can burn out if you’re taking too many classes. I thought to just pick one and see where it took me.”

Scholtes’ violin and pianist expertise was demonstrated in his performance of The Unaccompanied Marcus-Part VI, which culminated in Scholtes performing a duet with a recorded version of himself. This was achieved through performing the piano part live to a projected video of himself playing the violin accompaniment.

“I was trying to think of a title for it, you know, solo piano and solo violin,” said Scholtes on the inspiration for his performance. “Initial thoughts were Marcus Unplugged, but that was kind of more for rock ‘n’ roll so I was thinking what would the classical equivalent be … The Unaccompanied Marcus.”

He explained that the most complicated part of the performance was to synchronize his live rendition with the taped accompaniment. Professor Scholtes’ performance was received to thunderous applause, especially after his encore performance of dueting with himself.

While he has attained many degrees in Violin Performance from numerous accredited institutions, Scholtes seems to be just as talented on the piano.  In addition to teaching here at Laurier, Marcus Scholtes is a member of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and performs with them often. Of course, great talent comes with great dedication to practicing and improving skills.

“Every morning I practice two or three hours [for both instruments combined]. If it doesn’t happen in the morning, I just get too busy during the day and it doesn’t happen.”

For any aspiring music students wondering how Scholtes has achieved such a high level of success in his field, he revealed that the key was, “practice, just practice, as well as making contacts in the field. I would also say being diverse; the more diverse you are, especially in today’s market, the more you can do. The more skills you have, the more horizons it opens.”

The Music At Noon series features a different artist playing in the Maureen Foster Recital hall every Thursday at noon, and admission is free for Laurier Students.

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