Every year through the John Hancock MLK Summer Scholars Program, ZUMIX hires 5-10 youth to work with us for the summer. Positions range from assisting with our music programs, working with our Development & Communications team, or helping to plan community arts events. For many youth, this is their first paid job.
This week, we interviewed Mariana, a freshman at Boston Latin School. After being exposed to jazz and latin music when she was seven, Mariana fell in love with music and learned how to play the guitar. Mariana first joined ZUMIX in middle school under her music teacher’s suggestion three years ago and has been a huge contributor. At ZUMIX, Mariana rocks out with her band, Divercity on the keyboard, teaches private piano lessons, and helps plan fun events! She hopes ZUMIX will push her to become a better musician and more outgoing. Read the full interview below:
How old are you and where do you live?
I’m 14 and I live in East Boston.
What do you like most about your job? What about your job are you most excited about?
I love working with Jenny and I’m really excited about planning the senior graduation party. I want to bring everyone together and celebrate them.
If you could be any instrument, what would you be?
An instrument I think would be pretty cool to be a trombone or upright bass. They are rich and deep instruments.
What do you hope to accomplish musically?
I feel like I was able to accomplish my goal here at ZUMIX when my band opened for Sting.
What’s your favorite song and why?
Right now, I can’t stop listening to “About You” by San Cisco. His vocals are really nice.
Who is an artist you have been inspired by recent?
A mixture of my favorite artists—Young the Giant, Oh Wonder, Coldplay, and Arctic Monkeys, as well as some Jazz artists.
What do you think is the purpose of music? What does music mean to you?
Music is a way to empower the world and community and a way of expressing yourself and trying to make people happy.
Do you think music can change the world? In what ways?
Yeah, totally. Since music a universal language but people have their own unique way in expressing it, we can use it as a tool to exchange and empower ourselves.
If there was one thing you could change about the world, what would it be?
I would want there to be social equality.
What do you think is most important for people to know?
I think in recent times, especially, people should know violence isn’t the answer to everything. Fighting fire with fire doesn’t resolve anything.
If you had to give advice to someone, what would it be?
Don’t be afraid to try what you want to do—of course if it isn’t dangerous or anything.
What was the happiest moment in your life?
I think it was probably when I was playing a solo on stage. I felt proud of myself.
What dreams do you have?
I really hope I can become an architect or interior designer that can build something incredible.