The Davidson Institute of Talent Development has announced the 2015 Davidson Fellows. Among the honorees is 18-year-old Joe Broom of McLean, Va. Joe won a $10,000 Davidson Fellows Scholarship for his project, “Music as Voice: Presenting the Mosaic of Life.” He is one of only 20 students from across the country to receive this honor.
After being diagnosed with bacterial meningitis at nine months old, Broom’s parents were told to expect the worst. The illness delayed his speech development and left him without a way to fully express himself. He discovered his voice again during one summer packed with speech and music therapy, but it was not until joining the band that he found his current voice, through a metal mouthpiece and a brass instrument nearly as big as he was — the euphonium.
“I compare performance to a relationship; the harder I work before I am with an audience, the better we are together,” Joe said. A 2015 graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Broom is a freshman at the University of Michigan as a music performance major.
He also infuses music into education and public service; as founder of Chamber Unique, a network of young musicians, Joe created a performance series for an arts and wellness program serving seniors with neurological conditions. For more information, visit davidsonfellowsscholarship.org.