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The Freshman Cellist, Debra

By Caroline Gomar-Martinez

Freshman Debra Romo is an excellent cellist who is a part of Rialto High School’s advanced strings class.

She shares that she started playing the cello in the fourth grade at her elementary school because her older brother also played the cello and she felt inspired by him to do the same. Her sister is also a student at Rialto and mainly plays two instruments, the violin and snare drum, she’s also the assistant drum major for the marching band. This year, Romo has also gotten involved in the marching band through the color guard and is enjoying herself there as well.

Romo's favorite music artist is Lana Del Rey but there are also a variety of other artists she listens to. Additionally, Romo says that although she wanted to play cello because she was inspired by her brother, she also wanted to play an instrument after, “Going to concerts. I love the way it sounded.”

Romo states that her best moment as a musician was when she participated in her first district festival. The district festivals are annual celebrations hosted by different high schools each year that gather all of the musical classes within the district of Rialto. There are usually three different days for choir, band, and strings, and they are always filled with talented and grand musicians.

Debra Romo holding her cello (in its case) in the instrument room.

The biggest challenge Romo faced as a musician was being the only cello player for years, it was hard to have no one else to depend on and she felt as though this made it harder for her to learn the instrument properly and to be motivated.

However, this didn’t stop Romo from doing what she loves, playing the cello.

Coming to Rialto High School has been like a breath of fresh air for Romo. In the advanced strings class, there are five other cellists who are always willing to provide their feedback and help Romo with any complicated rhythms or notes she may have trouble figuring out. This was a big change to what Romo was used to, she suddenly had a whole group of people that played the same instrument as her!

Before this, Romo was strongly advised by the music director, Mr. Garcia, to join the advanced class when she started school, Romo was automatically put into the beginning strings class as all freshmen have to take it before moving up to the strings II class. She took the opportunity and has been steadily improving ever since the start of her freshman year.

Romo was also one out of two freshmen to be given the chance to move into the advanced class by the music director. At first, Romo started out in the advanced class a bit lost and intimidated by the music as it was different from the level of music that she was used to playing in middle school. Despite this, Romo did very well during the chair placement test given to all of the students of the advanced orchestra and managed to move up from where she started!


3 comentários

Debra! I have hope that she'll take my spot as principal chair soon enough. It's good to see the cello getting the attention it deserves. I hope that she's able to make even more of the same great memories I did as she grows as a cellist and musician.


Wow!!! Debra is an amazing cello and for being a freshman, she is outstanding. Her position in the advanced orchestra is well deserved and hopefully one day she'll be the first chair of the cello section. I wish her the best of luck on her journey to becoming an even better cello player. I believe she will go far in life with her musicianship.


Ashley Tapia
Ashley Tapia
08 de nov. de 2023

I love this for Debra!! she deserves this position as a freshman, she is an amazing cellist. Kudos to Caroline for making this article about Debra, her story is inspiring.

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