Spotlight on Freya

“I hope I continue to be re-nominated for NOFA till I’m old enough to volunteer as a chaperone as a grown up. I never want to leave the NOFA family!”
— Freya

Freya plays the violin, and was nominated for the National Orchestra for All in 2018 by her conductor and music teacher, for her dedication to music despite a lack of opportunities to engage in ensemble music-making. The aspect of NOFA she has found most rewarding and enjoyable so far has been the community feel: “My favourite things about NOFA are either the fact that you can learn a lot of different types of music and techniques from your peers or the bond you form with the people, the friends you make, the funny conversations with your desk partners and the fact that everyone has stories about where they’re from. I love the diversity of people and abilities, and that everyone is like family.”

This feeling of community and family has helped Freya deal with her feelings of anxiety and confidence issues. Freya says, “I’m not an overly confident person and can get quite anxious about things, but performing in an orchestra or in any other musical thing I feel more confident. At the start of joining NOFA I was very nervous and scared but after the 2nd sectional on the first day I felt a lot less nervous and my confidence has got better. The more I do with NOFA this impacted my confidence in things at home and school too.” Now Freya’s goal when she grows up is to perform in musicals, as playing music has sparked in her a love of musical theatre. She feels much more confident in the knowledge that if she has issues or questions at NOFA she can speak to anyone as “people are lovely and will help you with anything you need”.

“Freya’s confidence is improving more and more in the things she does with music and NOFA has been a massive part of that. The friendships and skills she’s gained and the confidence in her own ability to acquire new skills at such a quick pace have been a massive plus from being a member of NOFA.”
— Suzy, Freya’s mum.

This confidence boost and self-belief has been also noticed by Suzy, Freya’s mum: “Freya's only challenge is her own self confidence and lack of belief in herself sometimes. I was nervous about her leaving for her first NOFA session as it was all new to her and she was anxious about the unknown and nervous about her ability and lacking in confidence. But as soon as she came home, we couldn’t wait for the next one to arrive. Freya absolutely adored her first experience of NOFA. She was initially nervous, especially to leave me and her siblings to go somewhere new, but when she returned to tell me all she’d done and accomplished in those days away, she was the brightest and happiest I’d seen her in a long time.”

This self-belief has been exhibited in Freya’s performances, which has been amazing for her mum to watch.

“Seeing Freya’s happiness on stage being a part of something she loves so much was truly amazing, watching her growth in confidence as a musician and young person through NOFA’s guidance, support and teaching is definitely a highlight”
— Suzy, Freya’s mum.