Madeline De Geest, 11, started dreaming of becoming a conductor after she saw St. Louis Symphony Resident Conductor Gemma New perform in the Fall of 2016.
“When she went on stage she had this presence,” De Geest said.
New was leading the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra.
“I could not take my eyes off her,” De Geest said.
After the performance, De Geest asked New for an autograph.
“I just really wanted her autograph.” De Geest said. “She also gave me her conducting stick, which was really amazing.”
It was a small gift, but it is inspiring a big dream.
“I want to be a conductor someday,” De Geest said.
In the Spring of 2017, New invited De Geest to a St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra rehearsal.
De Geest brought a violin, a music folder, and a desire to learn.
“She has so much energy and potential,” New said. “She reminded me of myself when I was that age.”
New’s main role with the St. Louis Symphony is to conduct concerts.
“That is how I fit in to music, and how I can best express the music that I love.”
However, New’s impact is not confined to the stage at Powell Hall.
“She inspires many people out there,” De Geest said. “She helps other people with their dreams.”