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Daily Inspiration: Meet Amy Xaychaleune

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amy Xaychaleune.

Hi Amy, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I got started in music and art from a young age because I liked cartoons and wanted to make them (both the music and the art). I chose to try a career in music so I earned my Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in Violin Performance (Florida State University and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland). I was hired professionally by contractors starting in high school and then throughout college, I would book my own groups for events in addition to working for contractors and orchestras. When I moved back to Orlando (after living in the UK and touring), I took a few auditions and started working for a lot of orchestras, theme parks, and agents for tours, events, tv, and recordings. When one of my steady gigs ended, I decided to start focusing more on contracting my own work. I always wanted to play a lot of different music so I finally started creating different acts and groups in order to play this music as part of my career. Then I started getting booked for different events and gigs and I grew these different musical ideas into more business for myself and other musicians.

During the start of the pandemic, I grew my business by playing intimate events (elopements & private dinners), making music videos (some sponsored), and learning a lot of new music. However, since theme parks, tours, and orchestras weren’t fully operating, I had time to revisit my other love, art. I wrote and illustrated a children’s book based on my niece (Vienna’s Bakery: A Delicious Counting Book), sold custom digital drawings to clients from all over, and created my side art company, Scribble and Bow.

Currently, I juggle it all. I still perform with big name acts, in local orchestras, theme parks, and for contractors. I keep booking gigs for myself and my music groups. And I still have my art store running. I also have new music and art projects in the planning and production phases!

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
One of my struggles was confidence in starting to work for myself. I didn’t think I could contract for myself or build up my own music groups into a lucrative business. I wasn’t sure if I was good enough to be both a business person and musician. I was also worried what others would think. And being completely honest, learning the violin itself was also a big struggle. I liked solving puzzles and the violin was the most difficult puzzle to me, but also the most rewarding. I don’t feel I ever had an easy time learning the violin and even though I perform so much, my attitude towards it is that I can always learn something new.

Can you describe more of what you do, how people know you, what sets you apart from others?
I am a professional violinist specializing in live performance. I mostly perform in special events, theme parks and orchestras, but also play on tours, television specials, and studio recordings. On the production side, I create and lead different musical groups/shows, do the contracting and management for myself and these groups, and arrange & transcribe music.

I think if you asked my colleagues what I’m known for they’d probably say I’m everywhere and am an all-around creative person. I am proud of the amount of demand I have for my work as a musician and creating work for myself and others. What might set me apart from others is my willingness and ability to adapt, both in musical roles and production roles. I am a creative problem-solver so I get excited with most new opportunities or challenges, some previous examples include learning to multi-task while playing violin (walking in heels, dancing, sometimes talking, carrying an amp on my back while playing, etc.) or learning a different style of music.

Do you have any memories from childhood that you can share with us?
Painting murals on the walls of my bedroom. The first time/wall, I told my dad I wanted to paint my room, he asked “what color?” and I responded “Lion King.” My mom was away for a trip to see her family so my dad and I took advantage of the unsupervised time and painted a Lion King mural on one side of my room (my dad is also a creative type). When my mom came back, she liked it so it became a thing, when she was away I would paint a mural. I continued to be allowed to paint murals throughout my room and the house.

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