"We prepare students to engage in the world that is and to help bring about a world that ought to be."

The Virtuoso of 16th Street

Ashley Tripp // Senior Associate Director of Communications
Will ‘25 is a virtuosic performer who thrills audiences from the Meetinghouse to Merkin Hall. A Friends student since Grade 4, he always had an interest in music, but his affinity and talent for the flute has hallmarked his young music career. He uses the flute as a powerful tool to take his audience on a creative journey, engaging them in the melody and breaking down traditional barriers of the classical music listening experience in the process.

His laser focus at such a young age is remarkable. “My teachers and mentors are what keep me inspired. I feel blessed to have people in my life that care about whether you succeed,” he explains. Music Teacher, Dr. Brian Levels comments, "Will's continued successes are the result of both talent and diligence. His proficiency on the flute is striking, and he is truly a musician of status.”

On March 21, Will made his Merkin Hall debut at this year’s Henry Schneider Young Artists Concert with a performance of movements from André Jolivet’s Flute Concerto No. A student of Mary Barto, he’s studied at Lucy Moses School since Kindergarten. “Being invited was a big honor,” he explains. “It was a really great experience because it was one of the first times I felt no fear on stage. I was able to be happy and be in the moment.” (Read more about the performance and enjoy a video of Will rehearsing here.) This summer he will be continuing his musical studies at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI) with Grammy-nominated flutist Valerie Coleman.

A career in music seems a likely path, and Will has a number of routes to choose from due to his versatility as an artist, from Broadway pits to penning pieces from scratch. “I love to play, but there are other elements that I have also proven myself at like orchestrating,” Will explains. “I am very passionate about writing—and not just writing in the classical context—but also in the musical theater context.” He has premiered a piece at Friends and enjoys playing original pieces at local establishments with  even bigger projects on the horizon.

Artists are some of the most philanthropic members of our society—their work is a gift with the power to inspire change and reconciliation, dismantle barriers, educate, and illuminate. Will understands the importance of connection, communication, and giving back through the power of music, helping ‘bring about a world that ought to be’ through harmony. 
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Friends Seminary — the oldest continuously operated, coeducational school in NYC — serves college-bound day students in Kindergarten-Grade 12.