Will Ernst is best known at Nazareth Academy for his musicianship. He’s been playing in Naz bands since freshman year and has been trumpet section leader for the past two years. As a junior, he was named to the all-Catholic honor band and this year was accepted into Protégé Philharmonic Orchestra and played with the Illinois Music Education Association District 1 honor band. Ernst is also an Illinois State Scholar, an “A” honors student and a recipient of a Vicariate IV Youth Leadership Award.
“Will is a tremendous musician and has a musical mind. His trumpet playing is some of the finest playing I’ve heard from a high school student. I look forward to great things as he pursues music education for a career. I’m certain that he will make a fine band director,” says Nazareth’s Director of Bands, Andrew Boland.
Q. What are your post-high school plans?
A. I have been accepted and hope to attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as a Music Education major, plus be a member of the Marching Illini. From there, I’d like to become a high-school level band director and continue to pursue trumpet performance on the side.
Q. What do you like to do on the weekends?
A. I love listening to music, playing video games, practicing music or simply jamming with friends and spending time with my family. When the weather permits, I try to play tennis with my friends as much as I can. Occasionally, my family and I go up to Milwaukee to visit my brother at college and see a movie or go out for dinner, so we try to spend as much time together as we can.
Q. What is your favorite class or favorite subject? Favorite teacher?
A. My favorite class is Contemporary World Issues, taught by my favorite teacher, Mr. Jurasas. He has an infectious enthusiasm that makes the class something to look forward to every day. He is one of the biggest inspirations for me to become a teacher.
Q. What is your favorite social media?
A. I like to use Facebook to connect with friends and family, especially to stay in touch with distant relatives or old friends. My inner circle of friends and I typically share links back and forth of the music we’ve been listening to lately; so it gives me plenty of opportunities to widen my musical horizons.
Q. What is one thing someone wouldn’t expect to know about you?
A. I have a fascination with Celtic and Scottish music and I currently play the Irish tin whistle as a secondary/hobby instrument. I hope to someday learn how to play the bagpipes!
Q. What is your favorite thing about Nazareth Academy?
A. The friendly and welcoming community of teachers and students makes every day enjoyable.
Q. What is your favorite sports team?
Q. What is the one website you that you must visit every day?
A. YouTube — no contest. It provides a window for me to explore an infinite amount of genres and styles of music, find new interpretations of classic songs and to keep up with my favorite gaming and comedy channels.
Q. What is your favorite TV show?
A. My current favorite show is “Game of Thrones.” It has an addictive plot, awesome character development, a great soundtrack and some of the best cliffhangers in the business.
Q. What else should we know about you?
A. I’m a total video game and film soundtrack nerd and I try to spread my passion for music as much as I can to others. While high school has been an amazing experience so far (I’m really going to miss it!), I can’t wait to see what’s in store in the future!