First year women’s lacrosse player Aubrey Williams is not only talented on the field but is also a trained pianist. She has been playing the piano for 16 years and currently sings in a band.
Q: How did you get started playing?
Williams: “My parents had me start piano lessons when I was three-years-old to help me focus because I was a little hyperactive and all over the place. My piano teacher had never taken anyone that young before, so I had to go interview first. But she loved my enthusiasm, so she took me on as a student.”
Q: Did you have recitals or other types of training?
Williams: “My piano teacher had us do two recitals a year, two competitions a year and we played at senior living facilities, and in local malls during the holidays. I also had to apply and try out for Guild certification.”
Q: What are some of your favorite pieces to play?
Williams: “I’ve recently been working on Sonatina in C Major by Muzio Clementi and Sonatina in A Minor by Cornelius Gurlitt.”
Q: You are also a singer, what types of performances have you done?
Williams: “I used to play and sing at my school’s talent shows throughout elementary/middle school. More recently I perform with my band.”
Q: You currently play in a band, does the band have a name and where do you play?
Williams: “The band I play in is called “Close Enough,” because we joke that we’re good, just not amazing… but close enough. I’m the lead singer and piano/keyboard player, and then there’s our drummer, bassist and electric guitarist (although they can all play multiple instruments and are extremely talented). We’re based out of Bethesda, Maryland, so have performed at a few places near there. Performing got a little complicated due to COVID.
Q: What are your favorite songs to sing/type of music?
Williams: “I like classic rock and older music, so I like to challenge myself and learn to play and sing those songs. That is also the type of music that my band likes to play, as well. However, that style of music doesn’t really fit my natural voice. My voice is best suited to ballads and slower songs. For example, some of the songs that I’ve performed at talent shows were “Someone Like You,” by Adele, “Titanium,” by Sia, “Halo,” by Beyonce, and “Say Something,” by A Great Big World. But I think it’s fun to mix it up.”
Q: What is it about music that you enjoy?
Williams: “Honestly, I would best describe it as my “happy place.” It helps me relax, think, express my feelings and make sense of things.”
Q: Who are some of your favorite artists?
Williams: “I really appreciate the creativity and artistry of Alicia Keys and John Legend. However, the music I listen to the most right now is classic rock. In fact, my roommate and teammate, Maggie Bostain, and I both went to the KISS concert in Charlottesville this past year. Maggie is musical as well, and the thing we appreciated most about the concert was not just the theatrics, but how talented and great of musicians they all were. If you listen to one of my playlists, I have music from almost every genre.
Q: How has music influenced you in your life?
Williams: “It has helped me with my confidence and is an outlet for me to decompress. I can’t picture my life without music in it, even if I’m just playing and singing by myself at home.”
Q: Do you plan to keep playing music and singing throughout your life?
Williams: “For sure. Music is something that I’ve always loved and used as an outlet to think and express myself. I’ve really learned to appreciate my parents having “forced” me to take it as a kid growing up, because it’s a large part of who I am. Also, most of the people I’ve encountered throughout my life who can’t play an instrument or don’t sing always say they wish their parents had done the same for them or found a love for it earlier.”
Q: You will be a first year on Grounds, what are you looking forward to about getting to Virginia?
Williams: “I’m really looking forward to meeting a lot of new people and forming good quality relationships. Also, getting to live and work every day surrounded by hard working and motivated people excites me because I know it will benefit me in the future. I am also super excited to get to live with and hang out with the other girls in my class (who are coming in from six different states) on a regular basis. I have known most of them for a couple of years, and we all get along very well and have become really close already!”
Q: What made you choose Virginia?
Williams: “I chose Virginia because it’s a great academic institution, and I LOVE my coaches. I’ve actually known Coach [Julie] Myers since I was eight-years-old, going to Fast Break camp. You couldn’t find a coach that I have known longer or was more comfortable with. And since I’ve been committed, I’ve been able to build great relationships with both assistant coaches Colleen [McCaffrey] and Lindsay [Magro] over the past four years. They are also just amazing people. To have three coaches like them and be a part of a team with a great, family-like atmosphere – it feels like I’ve hit the jackpot! I also love Charlottesville. It’s a beautiful place and has a lot of really cool places.”
Q: You come from a very athletic family with both parents playing collegiate sports at Richmond. When did you get started playing lacrosse and what made you choose that?
Williams: “By the age of three, I was doing swim and dance lessons, however, my parents described me as a “linebacker in a tutu,” because I was much larger than the other girls and would apparently forcibly correct girls who were doing the dance wrong (during the recitals). From then on, we moved to more aggressive sports 🙂 I started playing lacrosse when I was five-years-old. But I also did track, cross country, basketball and soccer. My parents’ theory was to have me try every sport to see which one I liked the best.”
Q: What are some musical influences that have carried over into you playing lacrosse?
Williams: “I listen to classic rock/metal music before games to help me get fired up.”