Next weekend, Mr. Scuderi will be performing with the New Mexico Philharmonic! He will be playing mandolin in Mahler’s Symphony No. 7. It will be his first time playing with the orchestra, and he is especially excited to play alongside a few familiar faces, including his high school strings teacher and Ms. Maniacci, a first violinist in the orchestra. Get more information and buy tickets here.
Mr. Scuderi said they reached out to him for the part. “It feels nice to be known.” Although this is his first performance with the New Mexico Philharmonic, he is no stranger to playing with other symphonies. While he was in middle and high school, he participated in All-State every year. He also had the opportunity to play with the opera last year with Ms. Maniacci.
A longtime music lover, Mr. Scuderi first started playing cello in 6th grade. After he discovered the cello, he was introduced to the mandolin by his 6th grade music teacher. Twenty-one years later, and he’s still playing the mandolin. “I primarily see myself as a mandolinist,” said Mr. Scuderi. However, that’s not the only instrument he plays, as many know who attend upper school Morning Meetings. He is known to bring in and play a variety of instruments. Some of the other instruments he plays are Irish bouzouki, guitar, tin whistle, three different kinds of bagpipes, mandola, mandocello, bass guitar, tenor banjo, violin, viola, cello, and ukulele. He can play them all. Well, almost all of them. He admits, “I am terrible at piano.”
In addition to playing instruments, Mr. Scuderi also builds them. Last year, he built a ukulele; he is currently in the process of building his own guitar. He already has plans in the works to build a mandolin after he’s finished with the guitar. One would think that would keep him busy enough, but his hobbies don’t stop there. Mr. Scuderi is an avid reader—he read 60 books last year and is on pace to double that number this year. He is also a writer and has “most of a novel” finished. Oh, and he’s working on releasing an album soon! If you’re wondering how he has time for this, he has a secret: he doesn’t watch TV. A true Renaissance man, he is an inspiration to us all to put down the remote and pick up some tools, or a book, or an instrument, and try out something new.
Make sure to listen to this week’s “Music Moment” in the Buzz and hear him play the Irish bouzouki!