Spotlight #4: Deb Zimon

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Coffee with Deb Zimon, violinist with the MSO for 20 years

Submitted by MSO Board Member, Denise Gaffey

Deb began playing the violin in the fourth grade while at the (former) Franklin Elementary School in Wakefield. She wasn’t attracted to sports so an instrument seemed like a good idea. She’s been playing the violin ever since!

Fellow MSO player, Priscilla Hunt, was Deb’s orchestra teacher from sixth through eighth grade.  Deb continued with the violin throughout her four years at Wakefield High School. She graduated from high school in 1985, the same year that she joined the MSO.  

Deb attended college locally and continued to live locally which enabled her to volunteer with the MSO throughout her college years.  She participated until 2003 when her daughter Alana was born.  She resumed with the MSO in 2016 when family and work became easier to balance with weekly rehearsals.  Deb returned and continues to play with the MSO because she loves music, enjoys connecting with other orchestra members, and appreciates the nurturing environment. Currently, she is a Retail Store Planner for New Balance and resides in her hometown of Wakefield.

Q: Are you from a musical family?
A: Deb’s aunt played piano, and her brother played the clarinet.   Her sister was involved with drama and currently her daughter sings and acts.  Her dad enjoyed classical music so she had a lot of exposure to that growing up.  Deb remembers attending the Bicentennial Fourth of July concert with the Boston Pops on the Esplanade.  That and going to Tanglewood were inspirational events that influenced her decision to perform with the MSO.

Q: Do you get nervous before a performance?
A:  Yes!  Deb responded that it has been challenging to get back into performing and learning higher positions on the register.  Also, Yoichi has very high standards so that adds to the pressure.  She and her stand mate, Christine, work well together and work to calm themselves down when the pressure is on.

Q: What is your favorite orchestral piece and why?
A: Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, because it is beautiful and relaxing.

Q: Outside of music what are your other passions?
A: Deb enjoys creating Bullet Journals, which is a tool used to plan and organize.  She also finds adult coloring books relaxing.

Q: What lessons learned and inspiration would you offer children musicians?
A: Don’t give up!  There will be setbacks and challenges, but keep positive and keep passionate.

Q: Fond memories of playing with MSO?
A: Deb finds the May Pops concerts to be the most moving and poignant.  She loves the patriotism and connection to the Fourth of July, which also happens to be around the time of her birthday!  She loves the unfurling of the American Flag on the stage and, of course, Yoichi’s uniquely patriotic hats.