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Kylar Kuzio per­forms at gigs and now has a CD. | Kylar Kuzio Courtesy.

Sophomore Kylar Kuzio has recently wrapped up recording a col­lection of her songs. She burned them onto CDs, and said she hopes to put them on a digital platform soon. 

Though Kuzio majors in biology and hopes to join the medical or forensic field music stays a part of her life. She cur­rently does shows and gigs around the Midwest, usually at bars or restau­rants.

Kuzio’s musical journey began as a child in grade school. She started singing with stu­dents who were per­forming on instru­ments and needed a vocal accom­pa­niment. She enjoyed it so much she decided to learn the guitar herself.

Kuzio’s dad had a guitar he never used. He told his children whoever learned how to play it first could have it. Kuzio’s older brother — her senior by many years — was the only real com­pe­tition, and already singing gigs reg­u­larly. But with moti­vation and per­sis­tence, she put in the effort, learned to play, and won the instrument. 

That was only the beginning. She also learned to play the violin. 

“It was a very dif­ficult and unre­warding,: she said “and I even­tually got dis­couraged. I almost wanted to give up.” 

But she didn’t, and now she is an accom­plished vio­linist.

Kuzio wrote her first song in 7th grade during music week at her school. Although she said the song is mediocre in hind­sight, she trea­sures it as her first piece and one that res­onates with that stage of life, as the song was about her social struggles with girls her age. 

“Life sucks when you’re in middle school,” Kuzio said.

Since then, she has returned to the school to perform the song, con­sid­ering it an oppor­tunity to connect with girls in the age group. 

While Kuzio’s artistic talent includes visuals arts, music runs in the family.

“I was inspired by my sib­lings,” she said. “They had been doing shows since the time I was little.”

In addition, Ed Sheeran has been one of the biggest influ­ences on her work. Though she would cer­tainly enjoy it if music were to become a pro­fession for her, she said she rec­og­nizes that the musical world is com­pet­itive and over­flowing with other people trying to do the same thing. 

“Though I wouldn’t turn down oppor­tu­nities if they came my way, I keep real­istic expec­ta­tions,” she said. “I don’t plan on giving up on music, though. I enjoy it too much for that.” 

Both friends and family admire Kuzio’s per­son­ality, in addition to her musical talent. 

“She’s very bubbly and per­sonable, and you see the same things in friendship with her,” said freshman Annette Nguyen, a close friend and classmate. “Her musi­cality shows through her per­son­ality.”

Kuzio’s father, Paul, praised as well.

“I like that Kylar is humble and reserved,” he said. “She doesn’t think she’s all that.” 

However, her father said he does not believe her humility comes at the cost of her musical talent.

 “She could play for four hours from memory up on stage, and you’d never hear the same song twice,” he said. “She’s shy in person, but once she gets on stage, she comes to life.”

Kuzio said she strives to improve at song­writing and plans on per­forming after a break from music. 

“Last school term, I stopped doing shows almost com­pletely,” she said. “This year I’m getting back into it, and I’m glad of it.”