Favourite of Caroline Séguin

Principal Piccolo of the Orchestre Métropolitain

Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 10

My first encounter with the work…

June 2001. I was preparing to join the National Youth Orchestra of Canada for the whole summer. We were told which works would be on the program but not the positions we’d hold in the orchestra. Encouraged by a former teacher, I hoped to play the piccolo in Shostakovich’s tenth symphony.

I didn’t know a thing about the composer and I hadn’t heard any of his works. And while I’d played the piccolo in an orchestra, this would be the first major symphony I’d performed.

To prepare myself, I listened to the symphony. At first, I didn’t like it much. I didn’t understand anything. The internship began and I learned I’d be playing the piccolo. It was the beginning of a love affair between the piccolo, Shostakovich and me.

Through the composer, I discovered all the facets of playing the piccolo. Whether it’s with sweetness, sensitivity, power or brilliance, Shostakovich knows how to write for the instrument. I came to love the Russian composer’s orchestral colours of the, with atmospheres so bald and flights so fiery.

My deep love for this artist and for this symphony in particular shows that you shouldn’t always trust your first impressions!



My favourite passage

Actually, I have two favourites. The end of the first movement, with its magnificent duo for piccolo, and all of the second movement, which I never get tired of listening to. It’s pure condensed energy!


My favourite recording

Hard to choose a favourite recording. I compare everything to my experience with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. And I rarely find the energy of the concerts I performed in and recorded. But there’s a recording of the Philadelphia Orchestra under Mariss Jansons that comes close.



Trained at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal, Caroline Sèguin has been principal flute of the Orchestre symphonique de Trois-Rivières since 2002 and principal piccolo of the Orchestre Métropolitain since 2004. In demand as a musician, she regularly joins other ensembles, including the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Orchestre symphonique de Laval, Orchestre symphonique de Longueuil, I Musici de Montréal and the National Arts Centre Orchestra. She also performs at a number of musical events in the greater Montreal area. She shares her knowledge by giving private lessons and master classes and as a visiting professor at the Université de Montréal. In addition to being an accomplished musician, Caroline has been a certified professional NLP coach since 2015 and certified NLP instructor since 2016.

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