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The Healing Power of Classical Music: The Case of the Colombian National Symphony Orquestra

Updated: Apr 30, 2021

In a conversation on March 11th, Zulma Bautista and Christopher Jepperson, musicians from the Colombian National Symphony Orquestra talked about the healing power of Classical Music in times of a Pandemic.

They chatted with Ricardo Sepulveda, assistant professor and Director of Kent Blossom Music Festival, about the healing power of classical music, how they have transformed their lives during the COVID 19th crises and how the National Symphony Orquestra has adapted and changed to keep bringing the best of the world of music to its audiences in Colombia and around the world.

They also talked about their role in a recent TV series about the Orquestra where musicians tell their story. Zulma and Christopher have appear in chapter number four of Contra el Olvido, and shared with audiences how they ended up filming themselves for hours so they can show how a day to day of a musician life goes.

Clarinet principal

He was born in San Diego, California. From the age of nine he began to play the clarinet, an instrument that has accompanied him throughout his artistic career.

He studied at Rice University, Houston, where he received a scholarship for his entire career. He won first prize in the Young Artists competition held in Texas. Subsequently, he completed his master's degree at Yale University where he studied with the renowned clarinetist David Shifrin.

He was a Fellow in Tanglewood, Massachusetts, in the United States of America and at the Banff Music Center in Canada. He was part of the Quintet of the Americas in New York, performing at renowned venues such as Carnagie Hall, with which he also recorded for the XLNT and MMC Recordings label.

He settled in Bogotá 30 years ago. He was a clarinet professor at the Javeriana University, Los Andes, Juan N. Corpas and the Central University. It has been presented at the Banco de la República and at Mazda Concerts. He is currently the principal clarinet and soloist of the National Symphony Orchestra of Colombia.
Principal Bassoon in charge

Born in Bogota. She began her bassoon studies at 18 with maestro Siegfried Miklin, at the Conservatory of Music of the National University of Colombia; with him she learned the Austrian School of the instrument. 

She got her first job in the National Symphonic Band of Colombia just 2 years after her training as a bassoon player. Her vocation for teaching led her to be teacher Miklin's assistant for 3 years. In September 2001 she received her degree as "Bassoon Musician with an Emphasis on Instrumental Pedagogy."
Bautista coordinated a team of 6 bassoon teachers, for the creation of the contents of the Initiation Guide and Bassoon Booklet, books that were published by the Colombian Ministry of Culture in 2014 and distributed throughout the country.
She created, organized and coordinated the "National Meeting of Bassoonists 2010, 2011, 2012" and the first and second "Student Bassoon Contest". In 2016 she organized and managed the “Siegfried Miklin International Bassoon Festival”, an activity that had international impact with the participation of 120 registered bassoonists, 14 invited international artists and 12 concerts performed on different stages.
Currently, she is the First Assistant Bassoon in the National Symphony Orchestra of Colombia  where she has worked since 2003.


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