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Diane Czaplewski, Violin: The wannabe flutist

Diane Czaplewski, Kettle Moraine Symphony violinist

Diane Czaplewski was 10 years old. She had been playing a plastic recorder for a year and was finally old enough to join her school’s band.

She happily went down to the office to sign up. Her heart was set on playing the flute.
“All we have is violins left,” she was told.

Forty years later, the letdown is still etched in her mind to this day. “I just remember that moment vividly,” she said. She reported the news to her mother. “You gonna play violin? That’s what they have, that’s what you’re going to take.”

It didn’t take long for the pre-teen to fall in love with her only musical option. Playing came easily, and her parents didn’t need to push her as she practiced every day on her own. “I like how it seems to be a more emotional, passionate instrument,” she said. “It’s supposed to be the closest thing to the human voice so maybe that’s why it’s emotional.”

Czaplewski was classically trained with classes at UW-Milwaukee and the Conservatory of Music, and private lessons. But the Mukwonago native whose parents and grandparents bought her Beatles albums she cherished plays and appreciates a wide variety of music. That diversity was among the elements that drew her to the Kettle Moraine Symphony Orchestra.

In 2002, Czaplewski attended the KMS’ annual pops concert and thought, “I want to play with them.” She auditioned, earned a spot and has enjoyed every note since. The KMS, she said, is special.