Many great musicians have discovered their abilities at a young age, and Chantia Brown is no exception. Around the age of eight, Brown began to learn to play the piano, and her interest in instrumental music did not stop there.
Of her first experiences with music, Brown said, “When I was younger, I would stay at my aunt’s house, and she had a piano there and I would hear music on the television. I would go back to that piano and I would try to play it back. I realized at a very early age that I was always craving to learn more about music. So, that’s really what inspired me to study music.”
When Brown began middle school, she immediately joined the band. Though she got her start playing the piano, her primary instrument is the saxophone. “It’s just a cool instrument,” she said. “Saxophone was the instrument everybody wanted to play in sixth grade band. I just kept playing and I just kept going with it.”
Over time, Brown expanded her instrumental abilities as she picked up the clarinet, oboe, and the English horn. Recently, Brown has started learning to play the flute.
Brown understands the value of getting involved in her major. Not only is she in marching band, but also she participates in the wind ensemble, the saxophone quartet, the clarinet choir, the concert band and the gospel choir. In the past, she also participated in University Singers and New Pacer Singers vocal ensembles.
In addition to her participation in musical ensembles, Brown is involved in several other organizations around campus. She said, “I am in many organizations -- Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, the Sigma Alpha Iota music fraternity for women, and I also helped charter the Woodwind Student Association, where I serve as president. I’m also the multicultural affairs chair for the Student Government Association.”
Even over the summers, Brown has been involved with Summer Orientation and Registration. “As a SOAR staff member, it’s really important to me to help set the freshmen up for success,” Brown explains. “If I had to give the freshmen one piece of advice, it would be to learn time management skills. College is very exciting, but don’t let all that excitement get in the way of what you came here to do.”
Brown certainly understands the value of time management as she balances her campus involvement with her academics. She says that the music department faculty and staff provide her with guidance to help her as she pursues her music education degree. She says, “The professors are really great. They’re very supportive. You can ask them almost any question and if you need something, they’re there to help.”
As Brown’s senior year begins, she feels that she has the world at her fingertips. When she began UT Martin, she planned to become a high school band director after earning her degree in music education, and now, as she looks to her post-graduation plans, Brown hopes to pursue a master’s degree in saxophone performance.
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