By, Jocelyn Visnov & Mack Olmsted, Asst. Production Editor & Staff Writer
Originally from Lima, Peru, Luis Chavez is a man of many talents. Since coming to the United States in 2007, Luis has struck a chord with faces in every corner of the Bronx, spreading his love for the thing
he loves most: music.
Chavez discovered his passion for making music long before finding his voice on campus.
“I started singing in my junior year of high school, by accident,” he said. “I didn’t get into the science class that I wanted, and was put into a random class, and it was vocal music. I totally fell in love with
it and have been singing ever since.”
After beginning his career being put in a music class at random, Chavez was cheered on by Kenneth Farnham, his choral director at Fordham Prep.
“[He] was probably what inspired me to really follow it, and do a lot of what he did when he was my age, which was play for churches and start groups and play, play and sing,” Chavez said. “I feel like he really got me started and gave me the motivation I needed when things were rough, even outside of high school.”
Chavez is a junior sound studies major, with a minor in theater. In addition to his studies, Chavez is involved with a plethora of musical groups here at MC. He is the president of both the music ministry club and The Manhattones acapella group. He’s also a student assistant for the music department, the vice president of MC Singers, plays the piano for the jazz band, participates in annual theatrical productions with the Players and works as an RA in Jasper Hall.
Chavez is also among a musical team that hosts Coffee House, an annual open mic event held annually here at MC.
“I hosted with Emily Peterson, Joe Correa, and that’s an open mic that happens at the end of every month,” he said. Despite his jam packed schedule, Chavez loves every verse he plays here at school.
“It’s a very accepting group, I find,” he said. “And it’s very open for any new person, or anyone trying it for the first time. And I think that’s just so nice, especially like here in Manhattan College.”
Chavez’s passion for performance reaches far beyond the gates of campus. Every Sunday, Chavez sings and plays piano during mass at the Church of St. Vincent. He’s even been called on to occasionally lead
the mass himself.
In addition to his love of choral and instrumental music, Chavez is an active member of the theater scene. In addition to acting in and assistant directing productions with the Manhattan College Players, he’s also an assistant director for the Open Hydrant Theater in the Bronx.
“I see myself doing theater,” he said. “One of my goals or dreams for a very long time has been to become a part of Broadway, or tour or get equity, and do professional shows around like America, or even, I’d like to do one in South America, something in Spanish.”
In addition to his academic and professional endeavours, Chavez finds peace in playing music with his friends in his free time.
“I started rehearsing with a group, like really trying to get a small little band together of a sax player, trumpet player and a drummer, and I play piano and sing,” he said.
You can catch Chavez and his friends at upcoming open mic events on campus, though they have no set performance dates scheduled yet.
Chavez continues to shine on and off the stage by spreading both his love of music and positive attitude everywhere he goes. He continues to pursue his passion, and would advise his peers to do the same.
“I was going to do math and science for my entire life, then I came to music,” he said. “My parents were not happy, but I am so much happier doing what I’m doing now. If you find something that you like doing
you want to do, go for it, just go get it! Nothing is stopping you.”