Meet the Musicians: Mary Lynch

Photo: Guillermo Alarcon

Principal Oboe Mary Lynch is always ready for a challenge, whether hiking or exercising vulnerability on stage.

By Andrew Stiefel

Mary Lynch is always ready for a challenge — after all, that’s why she picked the oboe. “In fourth grade our band director told us he needed kids who liked challenges to play the oboe,” Mary explains. “I didn’t know what the instrument sounded like, but I said, yes, that’s me, I’m your girl.”

Mary Lynch

A few years later, in high school, Mary started to realize her instrument could be something special. “I love that I feel like I can sing through the instrument. In some ways I feel I can be more eloquent on the oboe than I can when I’m speaking.”

Offstage, Mary enjoys hiking and traveling. “I think it's the best way for me to clear my head. I find I get my best ideas and most clear reflections when I'm traveling.”

Despite her love for challenges, Mary also seeks balance. “When I’m hiking, I don't like just rushing to the top. I like to see different things and appreciate the beauty,” Mary says. “But reaching the top and that sense of arrival and accomplishment, especially where there is a great view — I love that.”

Each time she steps on stage, Mary says she can feel people listening. But, for her, “the way to be most open is not to focus on the audience but to walk onstage with the mentality that performing is an exercise in vulnerability. I have to bring my honest, open self and share that freely.”

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Posted on June 6, 2019