William Fitzpatrick - violin expert

The Many Stories of Bill Fitzpatrick: Turning down an apprenticeship

Learn how musicians must deal with their own dignity

In this video, Prof. Fitzpatrick tells a story about his childhood dream of playing in the New York Philharmonic and how that could have been an easy reach.

Released on September 21, 2022

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DISCLAIMER: The views and the opinions expressed in this video are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Virtual Sheet Music and its employees.

Video Transcription

While studying at Juilliard I got a call from the director of an apprenticeship program for the NY Philharmonic. He explained that the program allowed one to join the phil and this put one in a position to learn and prepare for the possibility of being named a full member in the future. So after this meeting I got in touch with an older violinist friend who happened to be black and asked him what he thought. He expressed his total dislike for "going through the back door" and cautioned that should ever I become a full member this could my stigmatize my relations with the other members of the orchestra as they had gone through the front door, the normal audition process. I totally agreed and when a letter came inviting me to be an apprentice, I turned it down, even though playing in the New York Philharmonic had been one of my childhood dreams.
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