Distinguished Artist: 2021 Yamaha National Concert Performer
This spring, one of our long-time, dedicated Yamaha students, 8 year old Roman Runes, was chosen out of many competitive applicants to perform in the 2021 Yamaha National Concert. Roman is a third grader at William Orr Elementary School. He joined the Junior Music Course at the Cerritos Yamaha Music School in October 2016 and has been learning in the group piano class with Ms. Yuko ever since. Soon after, his journey in drum lessons began. He sat down with us to share his journey as a student, discovery for a passion for music, and aspirations as a drummer and pianist.
Roman was inspired to play the drums when he started using his toys and sticks to make drums. “I wanted my own drums. I had a toy first, and my older friends from church put money together to buy me my own drums,” he shared reminiscing and thankful. He feels the most relaxed when playing the drums and hearing the beats. “I like learning with him because I like the things that he teaches me. He is so patient and fun. He’s my favorite teacher,” Roman says of his drum teacher, Mr. Pepe.
Roman also plays the piano in the Junior Extension Level 3 Course, sharing, “I want to learn and get better so I could use it to play at church,” when asked why he is passionate to play two instruments. Roman’s advice to other students in overcoming the challenges of playing two instruments is ‘practice, practice, practice!’ He practices twice as much to perfect the notes, which earned him a spot as a performer in the upcoming Yamaha National Concert this summer. He likes to play the piano with his brother and mom as well. As for composing his own music, Roman says, “I just started making my own song on the piano.”
Roman’s role model is Bruno Mars and expresses that if he could play for a band, it would be with his church band. Of hobbies, he shares, “I play video games like Minecraft, Fortnite, and other games. I like writing so I started to write a second book about me and my brother and our adventures.” Lastly, Roman shares his appreciation: “Thank you to my family and friends for encouraging me and supporting me. And most of all I thank God for giving me the talent to play piano and drums.”