Master of music

Leslie Lopez (10) has a passion for music that started at an early age which has now led her to several talents such as singing and playing several instruments.


“My mom is a band director, so we always had music playing in the house, so I started playing piano at the age of 7. Even before playing piano I sang a lot and after starting piano lessons I immediately started taking voice lessons,” Lopez said.

Lopez didn’t stop at just playing the piano and singing.  The older Lopez got, the more involved she became in music.

“I started playing the trumpet in the sixth grade, and I taught myself how to play the bass guitar in the eighth grade.  Then when I came to LC, I marched in the marching band and now I play trumpet and sing classical and jazz at the Merit School of Music in Chicago. The tuition is free because I auditioned for a scholarship and received $20,000, so basically I got a full ride,” Lopez  said.

With all of the musical instruments that she plays and can play, Lopez can also sing jazz and classical.

“They both have different aspects that are challenging which I like, a lot of times because I’m so young whenever I sing classical I get a stronger reaction from others, just because the style is meant for like a 30-year-old woman to sing, but I think I prefer jazz more because it’s easier to make it my own and I like to improvise,” Lopez  said.

Because Lopez is so involved she never passes up the opportunity to  perform.

“One really exciting performance that I had not long ago was at the House of Blues in Chicago.  It was really exciting because I got to sing with a jazz combo from Merit . Then another recent performance was at the Palmer House this past Thursday in Chicago.   My vocal jazz ensemble was performing in honor of Renee Fleming, [who is a] famous opera singer who has performed at the Metropolitan Opera and is head of the lyric opera.  She also sang the National Anthem at this past Super Bowl,” Lopez said.

With so much talent already, Lopez wants to continue being involved with music in the future.

“I would love to make a career out of it.  I am going to school for vocal performance and for music business and eventually will go to law school for entertainment law.  I guess if my music career takes off somewhere along the way then I will go with that, but for now this what the plan is,” Lopez said.