Matthew Kim ’24 Part of Orchestra Grammy History
March 14, 2023
Christian Brothers Academy junior Matthew Kim played a role in Grammy history last month – quite literally.
Kim was a celloist in the New York Youth Symphony’s recording that won “Best Orchestral Performance” at the Grammy Awards, earning the first Grammy ever by a youth orchestra.
“Seeing our music director holding our Grammy on the big screen projected in front of us, I was honored and thankful,” Kim Said. “As this is my fourth year in the New York Youth Symphony, I was able to proudly look back at how far I had come since first joining the orchestra. It made me appreciate all of the hours of rehearsals that went into our playing, as well as my parents and cello teacher who are always so committed to supporting me.”
Kim and his fellow musicians watched the Grammy Awards from their practice location in New York City, and when they were announced as winners, it was the culmination of an incredible project.
The New York Youth Symphony crafted their recording during the height of the pandemic, producing something they believed was powerful. The multitude of pandemic restrictions in New York did not deter the Youth Symphony from pursuing their goal.
“As we weren’t able to perform for our scheduled performances at Carnegie Hall, the Youth Orchestra coordinated this spontaneous project in which each member, while socially distanced, would record their parts individually to create the album,” Kim said. “Despite these challenges, we made it our goal to make it sound like we were playing in the same room. Looking back, it was an invaluable experience for me to partake in such a unique recording process along with other talented musicians.”
Kim has been working for years to refine his cello skills, developing the confidence that he can play with some of the best young musicians around. His love for music stems from his mother, who is a piano and organ player. Both Kim and his brother, who also plays the cello, quickly picked up the music gene.
While he and his fellow Youth Symphony players have achieved one of music’s greatest honors, he has no plans to leave the group any time soon. Kim hopes to pursue a music path in college, looking at a variety of universities that could help him become an even better musician.
“I hope to take this accomplishment as a stepping stone for future music endeavors as well,” he said. “Cello has been the center of multiple conversations I have with other orchestra members and has brought me to outreaches as I have played for rehab centers and benefit concerts aimed toward fundraising different charities. It will continue to be a big part of my life, so I hope to see even more growth as a musician in the future.”