Q&A with Violin Virtuoso, Danielle Swart
Wilmington native Danielle Swart is a busy teenager and a bit of an overachiever. She is dual-enrolled at Wilmington Early College High School (WECHS) and is a CFCC Fine Arts-Music major where she will graduate this May with her high school diploma and Associate in Fine Arts degree.
Danielle recently competed in the Elite International Music Competition in Cary, NC, winning first place in violin. Her prize? A coveted performance at the famed Carnegie Hall in New York City. Before she took off for the February 20 recital, we had the chance to chat with Danielle about her time at CFCC.
Why did you decide to enroll at CFCC?
I chose dual enrollment at WECHS so I could be at CFCC. CFCC is such a great option because there are so many classes that I can take now with little to no cost. Then, when I transfer to a 4-year university, I won’t have to retake those classes and pay much higher tuition.
Tell us about your experience at CFCC, including your major, student activities, and achievements.
Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to participate in many student activities. Practicing violin takes up a lot of my time. But, my classes are great, and the music community here is fantastic. Class and campus size is small enough that everyone knows each other. So, I find that to be nice and the teachers.
Do you mean just CFCC or the Wilmington music community when you say music community?
Both. I am also a member of the Wilmington Youth Symphony Orchestra and the regular Wilmington Symphony Orchestra. I am also a member of the UNCW Community Academy, where I have taken private lessons since I was about six years old. Since coming to CFCC, I have also taken lessons with Philip Singleton, program chair of arts & humanities – music. He’s allowed me to play other pieces I wouldn’t have played with my regular teacher. The additional lessons and music make my resume more impressive.
What are your plans after graduating from CFCC?
I plan to transfer to a 4-year university. I am considering either East Carolina University or the North Carolina School of the Arts. Of course, I want to major in music and become a music teacher. I enjoy teaching. In fact, I already have a few students that I teach now.
What made you want to pursue this career path?
When I first started taking lessons, I thought this would be a hobby. I didn’t know I could do much with it. But then I became involved with chamber groups and festivals and realized there were so many people in so many career options. I started seriously pursuing music by teaching and volunteering at a local middle school.
What advice would you give to someone who’s considering studying at CFCC?
Keep all your options open and explore as much as you can. Through CFCC, there are many options to help you discover what you like and your interests and do it at a low cost.
Interested in pursuing an associate degree in music? Take the next step today.