You started playing violin at age 3 and later enrolled in New York's High School of Performing Arts. How did you get interested in music so young?
Someone at my mom's office had a baby-sized violin, and she took it home. I started playing with it, and I loved it. It turns out our next-door neighbor was a concert violinist; I guess he was tired of that cat-killing sound I was making, so he taught me the basics.
I took classes at conservatories, played with many orchestras around town, and was playing day and night. Until I was 16, that's what I thought I was going to do. When I was 14, I started shaking out my hands a lot. My hands started to get numb, then tingle, and the pain would go up my arm and I couldn't control how I was playing. It was tendinitis, and I knew at that point I wasn't going to be able to pursue the violin at that level. With surgery, there was a chance I could mess up my hands more. So it was the biggest bummer, because I missed out on so many childhood moments. You think, I could have gone to that sleepover or that ice-skating party, or I could have tried gymnastics or dancing, or I could have slept in on Saturday instead of getting up to play with an orchestra.