Maroon Interviews Concerto Competition Winner Caroline Wong '16

The composer is dead
MJ Chen
The Chicago Maroon
May 2, 2014

Caroline Wong is a student at the University of Chicago Law School. A first-place winner of the music department’s 2014 Concerto Competition, she performed Jacques Ibert’s Concerto for Flute and Orchestra with the University Symphony Orchestra as part of its Concerto Showcase. I sat down with flutist Wong after the concert for a few words on technique, competition, and antitrust law. 

MC: You played the Ibert Flute Concerto last Saturday (wonderfully, I might add). I want to ask about your interpretation of the piece.

CW: I think a lot of French music has this unique quality of shifting very quickly into different, subtle changes of character. There’s a lot in the piece that depends on subtle harmonic shifts, or subtle textual shifts—in terms of different orchestrations from measure to measure, different voices coming out at different times. So there’s a lot of subtlety in the music. You get a lot of German music that has soaring, memorable melodies, like Beethoven. French music isn’t like that…it’s subtle. So a lot of what went into preparing the piece was getting familiar with the harmonies, the subtleties of color and figuring out what to do with that so the piece creates a very rich palette of colors, emotions, ideas.