What were you doing when you were thirteen? Umi Garrett is thirteen and she's possibly accomplished more than you and I put together had by that age. And then some. Garrett's been playing professionally since age eight. You can hear her perform this Saturday night when she joins the Missouri Symphony Orchestra at the Missouri Theatre for a concert the Missouri Symphony Society bills as Umi Returns.
With a busy schedule of touring and performing, Garrett manages to get her homework done. Attending class isn't important to her. She doesn't skip school rather her education is online. During our interview she was excited that her homeschooling for the year ended this week. That means more time to perform and compete in international competitions.
Sometimes it's a little difficult to do all of the above... All my education was online for the past two years. It's like a home-schooling program. It's portable and convenient and there's no set time so I can do it when I need to do it and also get practice done, which is very convenient for me.
Garrett started playing piano when she was four. Along the way, she's worked out the school thing, recorded and released two CDs of piano music and has netted some awards including a first place finish at the 13th Osaka International Music Competition and being named the Grand Prix winner at the 2010 Chopin International Music Competition in 2010. Garrett was also recently named a Young Steinway Artist.
She says concert-goers will enjoy her performance of Frederic Chopin's E-minor concerto this Saturday when she performs with the Missouri Symphony Orchestra at the Missouri Theatre.
It [the Chopin piece] has everything in it. It's very beautiful and fun and exciting and passionate. I really love that piece so I hope they do, too.
Listen to Thinking Out Loud each Tuesday afternoon at 6:30 on KBIA.