Christa Wessel

Since arriving here from North Carolina in 2007, I’ve traveled all around the state and have fallen in love with the high deserts of Eastern Oregon and the magically blue waters of Crater Lake. I also relish a stormy weekend at the Oregon Coast.

I adore the natural beauty of Oregon as much as I cherish the cultural beauty of our region. I could easily find myself in a concert hall every night of the week! I enjoy it all: early music, contemporary music, symphonic music and opera. So as not to exhaust myself I deliberately set aside time to play nerdy board games with friends, or will reserve a lazy afternoon to read a big novel. (I adore Franzen, Eugenides, Chabon and the like.)

I had once hoped to be a professional French horn player – I attended Northwestern University with that aspiration - but I graduated with a Bachelors of Music in Arts Administration. I still tootle my horn occasionally, and also enjoy picking up a ukulele from time to time.

Latest blog entries from Christa Wessel:

On Deck with Aili Deibert

Aili Deibert is a Junior at PorRoosevelt High School. She’s been playing flute with BRAVO Youth Orchestras (an El Sistema inspired afternoon music program based in North Portland) since 2015. She has performed at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall and was selected to perform in the National Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (YOLA). Aili is… More

On Deck with Soren Cowell-Shah

Soren Cowell-Shah has been singing his whole life. Now a 17-year-old senior at Catlin Gabel, he joined Pacific Youth Choir when he was only five years old. In this episode of On Deck, Soren shares with Raúl Gómez-Rojas how he loves the breadth of music he gets to sing in PYC, as well as the… More

On Deck with Tristan Kriz

Multi-instrumentalist, Tristan Kriz is a sophomore at Roosevelt High School. He started playing flute in the 5th grade while already playing the guitar. He picked up the clarinet and saxophone as well and loves jazz and classical music. Tristan joined the Metropolitan Youth Symphony’s Flute Ensemble last year and enjoys it very much. He is… More

On Deck with Mia Williams

Amy Faust chats with Mia Williams, a senior at Sam Barlow High in Gresham who is a lead soprano with the Pacific Youth Choir and a passionate participant in her high school theater program. (She’s starring in the title role of “Mary Poppins” this month, in fact!) Mia has been singing since she can remember… More

On Deck with Ishan Ghosh

Ishan Ghosh is a 16-year-old junior at Westview High School. He is a highly accomplished oboist and violinist who plays with Metropolitan Youth Symphony’s top ensembles: Symphony Orchestra (oboe) and MYSfits (violin). In this episode of On Deck, Ishan chats with Raúl Gómez-Rojas about his beginnings in music, learning to play the tabla and being… More

On Deck with Claudio Chung

Claudio Chung is a 17-year-old pianist at Lakeridge high school. He is a student of Linda Barker and a recent winner of Cognizart’s Young Artist Debut Competition. You can hear him along with the five other winners of the competition on November 18, 2022 at The Reser in Beaverton. At the tender age of five,… More

On Deck with Eliana Choi

Eliana Choi is a senior at Lake Oswego High School who has been playing the piano since she was five years old. In this episode of On Deck, Eliana speaks with Raúl Gómez-Rojas about her experience becoming one of the winners of Cognizart’s Young Artist Debut! Competition, and how she’s using her music making to… More

On Deck with Kristen Kim

Kristen Kim is a 13-year old cellist and the youngest winner of a spot on this year’s Young Artist Debut concert (November 18th at the Reser in Beaverton).  While she enjoys reading and cooking, most of Kristen’s time is dedicated to music.  She plays in 3 ensembles with the Portland Youth Philharmonic and is also… More

On Deck with Timothy Lee

Violinist Timothy Lee, 17, chats with Raúl Gómez-Rojas about his musical journey and how he is giving back to the community through not one, but two non-profits. As one of this year’s six winners of Cognizart’s Young Artist Debut competition, Timothy is grateful for the opportunities he has had so far. That is why he… More

On Deck with Ellie Kim

Amy Faust gets to know Ellie Kim, one of this year’s six winners of Cognizart’s Young Artist Debut competition. A junior at Westview High in Beaverton, Ellie has been playing violin since age 5. With her younger sister, Kristen Kim, also being recognized by Cognizart this year for her cello playing, it’s surprising to hear… More

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