Meet Chelsea Estes: An inspiring young musician
By Vanessa H. Fardin
Photograph by Melissa Ray
Music education and performance are essential in the artistic development of Chelsea Estes, a senior at Kennesaw State University. Chelsea’s mother is an art teacher and her father plays the guitar, and she is proud of their tremendous influence on her love of music and on her pursuit of a musical career. She remembers singing and learning how to play on her grandmother’s piano at the age of five. “Those are my fondest musical memories,” Chelsea says. “My family has been very supportive and I think that’s the reason I chose the path I did.”
During her sophomore year at North Springs High School, Chelsea decided to become a music teacher. Her private tutor at the time, Christina Smith, principal flute player with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, encouraged Chelsea to attend KSU’s School of Music.
At school, she is a member of the KSU Orchestra and has participated in several KSU opera productions since 2007. Outside of KSU, Chelsea collaborates in church performances, high school musical productions in the area, and is on the production staff of the Cobb Symphony Orchestra. She manages to juggle those responsibilities with 16-hour semesters and rehearsals that last for hours. “Music can be for enjoyment,” she says, “but having a musical career is fun, if that’s what you want to do. It’s one of those things you wouldn’t do if you didn’t love it.”
She appreciates the influence the faculty and the staff at KSU have in the development and the growth of their students. “At KSU,” Chelsea says, “no one is a number, and we all work as a team.”
Michael Alexander, director of orchestras and assistant professor of music, describes Chelsea as “a terrific student who is curious and dedicated to improving herself in all area of music. She is well on her way to becoming a great arts administrator because she understands the art that she is trying to lead. She also has an engaging personality and is a very hard worker.”
Chelsea hopes to earn her Bachelor’s in Music with an applied concentration in flute next year. She plans to pursue a career in arts administration, and she feels her experience, her love of the arts, and her patience, drive, and willingness to enjoy and share her craft will contribute to her success.