We had the good fortune of connecting with Allie Miller and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Allie, what’s the most difficult decision you’ve ever had to make?
For a hobby, I started taking violin lessons when I was six years old. When I was in seventh grade, though, my private teacher sat me down and told me that she saw in me the talent and the potential to actually “make it” as a violinist, but that it was going to require years of diligent practice, patience, and persistence. To that – she was right! I had to make the hard decision at a very young age to forego the “music as a hobby” mentality and become career-minded, before I was even out of middle school! From that point forward, I began practicing 3-6 hours a day in between school, homework, and other daily life. I didn’t have much of a social life to speak of growing up, spending any time I could before and after school practicing my violin. My family and I didn’t even go on vacation that I didn’t take my violin to practice! I went through middle school, high school, college, and graduate school determined that my daily hard work was going to pay off one day, and finally, once I finished school, it did. Though I was often discouraged, lonely, and burned out, I made the regular, tough decision to keep going, and I’m so glad that I did!

 

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am currently a section violinist in the Richardson Symphony Orchestra and Plano Symphony Orchestra, and am the concertmaster, orchestra manager, and orchestra librarian at First Baptist Dallas. A Nationally Certified Teacher of Music in Violin (NCTM) of the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), I’m also an active violin instructor, and enjoy freelance performing and recording around the Dallas / Fort Worth metroplex. Previous work experiences include being an adjunct music professor at Tarrant County College, serving as the orchestra librarian at the Blair School of Music, and interning with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, among others. I graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree in violin performance and music history and literature from Vanderbilt University in 2017, and then went on to receive a Master of Music degree in violin performance from Texas Christian University in 2019, where I was a graduate teaching assistant, and was invited to join the Gamma Epsilon chapter of the national music honors society, Pi Kappa Lambda. A native Texan, I graduated with honors from Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in 2013, and recently moved back to Dallas with my husband, a cellist, composer, and church music director.

I got to where I am today from a combination of hard-work, patience, open-mindedness, and networking. It’s not news to anyone that the music industry is extremely competitive. That being said, it truly does require years of diligent practice and hard-work and patience perfecting your craft to break into the industry. I’ve been playing my violin for 20 years to get to where I am today! Having an open mind when it comes to a career in music has also been important. Today’s music industry relies largely on freelance work, meaning that most musicians have to fit several part-time or contract jobs together to equal a normal “9 – 5” type job. These days, musicians need to have an entrepreneurial spirit and open-mind when it comes to what music-related jobs they can add to their career. For example, in addition to my career as a performer, I also teach and work in arts administration, and my schedule is filled to the brim! I can’t stress enough the importance of avoiding a narrow-minded, one-track job approach in the music business. Networking and connecting with other people in the music industry is also very crucial. A lot of the gigs and jobs I’ve gotten over the years have come from people in the DFW area that I went to school with, met at a previous gig, or know through someone else in the music field. That’s why it’s so important to make a good impression and show you’re also a reliable and kind person, in addition to a good musician. Talent goes a long way, but attitude is what truly makes an impression when networking with other musicians.

My path to becoming a professional violinist has been filled with blood, sweat, and tears, but it has been so worth it. Music is such a gift to the world – it has a way of resonating and connecting with people in a way nothing else can. I love being able to personally express myself through playing the violin, as well and getting to perform with other musicians and be a part of something so much bigger than myself. I am truly blessed.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Our first stop would be one of my orchestra concerts, of course! The Richardson Symphony Orchestra and the Plano Symphony Orchestra both perform at the Eisemann Center in Richardson, which is really close by! For day-time activities, we’d definitely hit up Klyde Warren Park and eat at one of the amazing food trucks, and then maybe go to the Dallas Arboretum, Dallas Zoo, Six Flags Over Texas, and most importantly, THE STATE FAIR OF TEXAS! Also, you can’t come to Dallas and not indulge in our vast Tex-Mex scene!

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to dedicate my shoutout to my parents for their generous support of my violin endeavors over the years. I also want to thank my many violin teachers for encouraging me and helping me grow into the violinist and musician I am today.

Website: www.allieviolin.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/allieviolinist/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/allieviolin/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/allieviolinist

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxd2ZEZuCOmrLTEfxF1WEIQ

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.