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Brittany Pezzola: A Pianist’s Journey

The+music+that+rings+through+the+ears+of+many+students+at+the+Kessel+Student+Center+often+comes+from+the+piano+playing+of+junior+Accounting+major+Brittany+Pezzola.
The music that rings through the ears of many students at the Kessel Student Center often comes from the piano playing of junior Accounting major Brittany Pezzola.

The music that rings through the ears of many students at the Kessel Student Center often comes from the piano playing of junior Accounting major Brittany Pezzola.

Lindsey Gill

Lindsey Gill

The music that rings through the ears of many students at the Kessel Student Center often comes from the piano playing of junior Accounting major Brittany Pezzola.

Kwadar Ray, Managing Editor

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It was Brittany Pezzola’s sophomore year at Maria Regina High School when she saw the list of students that made the school’s basketball team for the upcoming season. Her name was not on the list.

Although the Yonkers native did not make the team the previous year either, this time around was truly devastating. She practiced strenuously; even hired a coach from Fordham University to help her make the team and give tips for her tryout. Ultimately, those efforts did not achieve its goal.

That same year, Pezzola went to her attic and found her old keyboard from her piano-playing days. She began playing the instrument at four years old, but stopped in seventh grade to commit to basketball. With basketball-playing goals now gone, she decided to return to her pianist roots.

“I said, ‘Let me try practicing it,'” Pezzola said. “So I went on YouTube and looked up tutorials. I got back into it, but it wasn’t easy at first.”

At the time, the Pace junior needed to learn the intricacies of music theory, so she sought out other musicians. She also attended a summer class at SUNY Purchase for songwriting to perfect different qualities of the music field.

“When I was just learning from YouTube, if someone asked me back then to play them a song that they wanted, I wouldn’t know how unless I practiced for like two weeks.”

Today, if there is music being played at the Kessel Student Center, chances are it is Pezzola on the piano. Her favorite songs to perform at the moment are “Breathin” by Ariana Grande and “Sober” by Childish Gambino.

She will argue that she only gained full confidence as a pianist recently, but she made an immediate impact on campus as a freshman.

“When I first came to Pace as a freshman, older students like seniors and graduate students liked when I played apparently, and like wanted to know my history,” she said.

Not only did she receive compliments from upperclassmen for her musical talents that year, but one student even informed Pezzola that her rendition of Radiohead’s “Creep” brought him to tears.

Pezzola also plays the keyboard for the Pep Band, along with performing at certain events.

“I have performed here for the Black Excellence Dinner a couple times for the Black Student Union (BSU) and performed two pieces from LA LA Land that were instrumental pieces last year for another event,” she said.

She is also in two church choirs, where she has duties as a singer and keyboard player.

Before that disappointing day her sophomore year in high school, Pezzola’s aimed to play professional basketball. Now, her goal is to break into the music industry as a professional musician, with accounting as the backup plan. She has already uploaded a few of her renditions on Instagram, with plans to also upload YouTube videos of her performances.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Happy birthday to @arianagrande. Here’s my piano cover of ”No Tears Left to Cry”. Hope you like it if you see this.

A post shared by Brittany (@the.amazing.brit) on

Pace students have a front row seat for Pezzola’s performances, as she can be seen nearly every week playing the piano in Kessel. And while she appreciates any compliments passed her way, she is not playing for the approval of others.

“A lot of times [people compliment my music], and that is very nice,” she said. “Sometimes, I don’t get any reactions at all, but like I’m not here for the reactions. I’m in my own world while I’m playing.”

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About the Photographer
Lindsey Gill, Photographer
Lindsey is a Computer Science major who lives in the Bronx, NY. She will be graduating from Pace in 2022. Her hobbies include photography, watching YouTube, traveling, and playing sports. Her favorite place to be is Ireland, where she was raised. 
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