Written by Theo Tran
What is your major, and what do you like most about it?
My major is music education, with a choral emphasis, and what I love most about it is that you can really start at any time. Sometimes the most basic music education is showing someone a good song. I love being around the future. At one point, we were the future, and there were teachers there to give to us, and I can’t wait to be in a position to give back.
What made you want to do Titan Radio? How did you hear about Titan Radio?
My friend Angie, one of the board members, asked me to be on a couple shows, and I realized what a cool platform it was. I saw that there were like four or five pop stations and only one classical radio show, and I thought: “Wow, this needs more exposure, why not bring it here to Titan Radio?”
Can you describe your experience DJing on Titan Radio so far?
It has definitely been a process both for the audience and I. I can now put on my resume that I’m good at pressing buttons. In all seriousness, it’s quite a responsibility. You have to be credible and accurate if you want to reflect the culture well. I go through reading through dissertations people have written and really studying my sources to give people the most applicable and interesting humanizing aspects of the music I can find.
How would you describe your show to someone who’s never heard it?
Bringing awareness to classical music, I think it’s slowly becoming an art form that is underappreciated, and I want to bring attention to it. I want to spark conversation about it, not like shock value, but more like appreciation value.
What do you like about classical music?
I went to a TedTalk called “What is Classical Music?” and it talked about how pop music is constantly changing. And at one point, classical music was considered pop music, so for me, classical music is a timeless thing. It is something that has a technique and holds familiarity to people. You can identify a song just by how it runs in a cartoon, but not by the title. So for me, classical music is something that is familiar but has not yet been discovered.
Where did your interest in classical music come from?
So my mom grew up in a household that was extremely traditional and strict, so she didn’t hear too much music growing up. There was no such thing as radio stations or mariachi. My dad grew up here, and he listened to a lot of jazz music and Motown. My anthem used to be jazz, and I thought that was weird. I got to middle school and heard mariachi for the first time, and I found myself falling in love and constantly wanting to do more with music. Growing up with my parents having this background, I really wanted to expand on my own musical interest and take it as far as possible.
What is one of your favorite songs of all time?
Gather at the River, arrangement by Stacey V. Gibbs, is a song about the relationship we hold with God, and how we all come down to this river. The intention behind each of our purposes coming down to the river varies, but we all connect through the medium of coming down to this river. I love how vague it is, but is easily applicable to one’s own experiences.
What is one interesting thing about your show?
I don’t like saying Classical Titan is my show, I want this show to evolve to a community-based platform. It’s not MY show; it’s Cal State Fullerton’s classical music show.
Is there anything else that you’d like to share with your audience?
I’ve only said my name once on air, I don’t like making the focus of the show on me, but more so on the show itself. Also, I play a jingle at the start of my show that was done by Nina Kressia, a composer here at Cal State Fullerton. We are playing her song later on this year about immigrant children at the border who are struggling right now. I think we need to be talking about social issues more, and classical music is a great way to bring attention to that.