Perfect Pitch is the Key

Sophomore En-Hua Holtz takes perfect pitch to new heights

by: Emma Caulfield

Sophomore En-Hua Holtz has always been fascinated by the piano, from when she was a child playing simple melodies on toy keyboards. Holtz started to take this passion seriously in kindergarten when she watched two girls play a piano duet. That day, she went home and asked her mom for piano lessons. It took two years of convincing until she eventually got her way and changed her life permanently.

Holtz has something called perfect pitch.
Perfect pitch is when someone hears a pitch and can tell what note it is without watching it being played. Regardless of the key, someone with perfect pitch is able to identify the note of any pitch. This is comparable to listening to someone tap dance and knowing what step they are doing without looking.
Holtz’s organ and piano teacher, Violetta Scott, is who she credits with discovering her perfect pitch.
IMG_2708“It was in my first year of playing piano. My teacher liked to test me for these sorts of things and one time she had me turn away from the piano and then she played a note and I told her what the note was,” said Holtz.
“She takes her music very seriously. She is very intelligent, very diligent and takes practicing very seriously. It also helps that her parents are very supportive of her,” Scott said. Holtz’s piano teacher isn’t the only one who thinks Holtz is exceptional.
“She [En-Hua] really knows how to express her feelings through the piano. Other people sort of just play it and just touch the keys but she really shows what the composers wanted,” said En-Hua’s close friend, Charis Qi.
En-Hua’s passion doesn’t lie only in piano. “I hope to be able to study organ in college and I don’t want to completely leave piano behind because I enjoy it too,” said En-Hua.
Holtz was first introduced to organ only last year after Scott took her to a few organ services. These services got En-Hua’s mind churning and inspired her to pursue organ lessons and eventually take it up in college.
“I practice organ immediately after swim practice because it’s across the street. Then I go back home and practice piano and then the time left after dinner is for homework. Sometimes I have to stay up a little later than I want to but it gets done,” said Holtz.
Holtz does have some good advice for aspiring musicians: “It takes quite a bit of hard work and it’s not really something you can dabble at, unless you just want to do it for fun. If you want actually make something, there’s stiff competition out there.”

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