Shen wins WA’s Got Talent


People who participated in WA’s Got Talent.

Kai-Lou Yue, Editor-In-Chief

As his fingers dance across the black and white keys and music washes across the auditorium, freshman Joseph Shen alerts members of the WA and Westford community that they are in the presence of another talented high school musician.

Recently, Shen performed at WA’s Got Talent with Medelssohn’s “Rondo”on the piano and won first place against many other competitors. However, it was not him who originally wanted to play in the talent show, but his brother, senior Kevin Shen.

“My brother signed me up. He told me the [day after]. I was surprised, but I just played anyways,” said Shen.

Besides WA’s Got Talent, Shen has taken tests created by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) examinations board. Through the years has played piano, he has taken the third and fifth level tests, and plans to test for his seventh level during his senior year because he will have more time then.

According to Shen, the ABRSM tests on scales and solos; they pick random scales out of a book to grade the musician on their playing, though that is not all they test.

“They also see if you’re nervous or not and if you mess up or if you’re comfortable playing the music,” said Shen.

While he did well on his third level, he passed his fifth level with merit.

Shen said he started playing the piano 12 years ago because he wanted music to be a part of his life besides just school. Additionally, he has played the violin for the last seven years and is now part of WA’s Chamber Orchestra.

“I wanted to have more extracurriculars and to play for other people and make them enjoy music,” he said.

Though practicing an instrument can be time consuming and difficult to manage with a regular course-load, Shen claims that playing the piano helps more than hinders his academics.

“[It] gives me time off of school and lets me focus more on my schoolwork and homework […] because I remember more when I’m playing then I study. I take 15 minutes of playing then go do my homework,” he said.

As for the future, Shen believes he may try competing in the musical world.