Regina Symphony Orchestra musicians play at King Charles's coronation
From the Queen City to the King's coronation, two Regina Symphony Orchestra (RSO) musicians travelled to London to play amongst seven orchestras from across the United Kingdom.
Hyon Suk, principal clarinetist, and Heng-Han Hou, principal second violinist, were notified in March by RSO management that they were chosen to perform at the coronation, but had to keep the news a secret.
"Of course, it was hard to not scream out of my lungs and say, 'I'm going,'" said Suk.
The opportunity on May 6 stemmed from a long relationship between King Charles and the Regina Symphony Orchestra.
The King is a "music enthusiast," according to the official website of the British Royal Family, and was personally involved in the commissioning process for the music program.
Hou and Suk had two months to prepare for their travel but only two weeks to learn the music before the event. For Hou, that amounted to 60 pages of sheet music.
Hou found it nerve-wracking to play with musicians unfamiliar to him, but he said everyone was patient and understanding.
"It was such a great experience, and music is a universal language. You know, we communicate through our playing," he said.
The musicians didn't have the clearest view, but Suk said she was able to catch a few glimpses of Charles being crowned.
"I think I'm still high from the event. It's just such a fun moment to play with all the musicians and be able to participate in this historic event. I still feel it's unreal," said Hou.
The duo are now back in Saskatchewan. Their next performances with the RSO are on May 13 and 20.