Noah Bolzoni has been playing the viola since fifth grade, and he chose the instrument for three reasons: he enjoyed the sound in terms of range and timbre more so than the other instruments showcased (i.e. the violin), his best friend agreed to learn the instrument as well, and the person demonstrating the viola played “The Imperial March” from Star Wars on the instrument. Noah is currently the section leader for the viola section in the Stevens Orchestra and has played with the Stevens String Ensemble for the past year, performing in the Summer Spectacular and Holiday Concert. He is a 3/5 Mechanical Engineering student from Bloomfield, NJ. When he is not in classes or rehearsal, Noah is also a member of the Filipino Association of Stevens Tech (FAST), and in his free time, he likes to explore the railroads of New Jersey. Noah adds, “I would like to work for a railroad in some capacity as my profession of choice.” As a side note, he is on track (haha, excuse the pun) to work in transportation, since he had a co-op at Amtrak.
While at Stevens, Noah has gained valuable professional experience through the co-op program. Noah explains, “I greatly appreciate the opportunities the school provides for students to network and find employment. Additionally, being a Stevens alum has many perks in terms of finding professional connections – you would be surprised as to how many people came from this place.”
In addition to co-op and academics, Noah has always made time for music. Noah points out that “music has been a stress reliever for me over the years. I believe that playing in an ensemble gave me a mental respite from whatever difficulties I had from challenging classes.” There is an undeniable connection between academics and music, and Noah sums it up well: “having a mind which is accustomed to mathematics helped me with basic musical aspects such as keeping time and understanding tone intervals.”
In the past year, Stevens has offered more performing arts opportunities on campus. Noah emphasizes the importance of music events, like OnStage featuring the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (NJSO), as “a great idea for students to enjoy professional performances at a fraction of the cost.” Additionally, Stevens now awards half a credit per semester for playing in the Stevens Orchestra and attending every rehearsal. Noah adds that despite Stevens being known primarily for its technical expertise, “I think that there is always room for improvement since every college should be well-rounded in terms of arts and music.” Well said, Noah.
The future looks bright for the musical groups at Stevens. The key to keeping the arts alive depends on Stevens students. Noah suggests, “I hope that the musically talented students will set aside time to be part of music ensembles and that they and others who enjoy music will attend the music-oriented campus events and performances. As a specific note, I would be greatly appreciative if the strings section (or viola section, specifically) of our campus orchestra grew to balance the sound.” Again, well said, Noah. It is not too late to join the Stevens Orchestra!
To emphasize the importance of keeping music alive on campus, Noah asserts that, “high school should not be the end of your musical career. Playing in an ensemble, or at a minimum, sharing your talents is something that should continue into college and well beyond. I believe music is worth the time and effort.”