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Discovering Beautiful Music in Life: Nathaniel Kuhn

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08/01/2012 - By Gayle Irwin

Music has been part of Nathaniel Kuhn's life since childhood. The 18-year-old will continue his enjoyment of music when he travels to Laramie later this month and begins his freshman year at the University of Wyoming.

"Music has been a big part of my life since I was little," he said.

His mother was a music teacher for several years; both of his parents, in fact, are musically-inclined, and Nathaniel has followed in their footsteps. He sings and plays piano, guitar and trumpet. He was also part of the Kelly Walsh men's and a-cappella choirs as well as the jazz ensemble. He plans to minor in music and major in computer science.

"Computer programming is really creative – it's like Legos," Nathaniel explained. "You create programs, you build things."

He's already built his own computer.

Nathaniel and his family moved to Casper more than two years ago from North Dakota. His father is the pastor at First Presbyterian Church and his mother works at Casper College's Testing Center. Nathaniel has been home-schooled for several years, but he also took several classes online and at KW. He also participated in several musical productions, including Kiss me Kate and Les Miserables, which he said he greatly enjoyed.

"There's an emotional connection (being on stage)," he said. "There's a unique power that connects people with music, and being on stage is unlike anything else in the world. It's different than choir concerts – there's lots of energy! It's great fun!"

Nathaniel said he sees himself continuing with music throughout his life. In fact, he'll be in men's choir at UW and plans to audition for other choirs as well. After college, he may join community theatres and sing in community choirs. However, his career will be in the computer field, possibly starting his own business one day.

Nathaniel possesses a strong Christian faith and said being a minister's son has not been a difficult journey for him. "It's not been much of an issue," he said. "I'm strongly Christian, it's part of who I am. It affects how I am, how I act. I'm more thoughtful about what I do, for example," he said.

A National Merit Scholar and former Boy Scout, Nathaniel completed an Eagle Scout project upon moving to Casper, assisting the Renewed Hope Foundation. He also participated in the Trojan Trek for the American Cancer Society, sang in the church choir, played a few trumpet pieces for the church as well as helped with the church's nursery a few times. Adjusting to life in Casper after living in a North Dakota community of 2,000 presented its challenges but he's been successful at that adjustment. "At first, I thought, 'this town is so HUGE!'" Nathaniel said. "But, it's amazing how small the town really is."

Before heading off for his new college adventure, Nathaniel and his parents are planning a family vacation, possibly to the Yellowstone area. "I haven't been there since I was a child," he explained.

An only child, Nathaniel said he and his parents are very close, and they are encouraging of his plans and dreams. "They're really supportive of me going to Laramie, going to a new town and having the dorm experience," he said.

This strongly faith-filled young man will no doubt once again excel at his endeavors in another new community and most likely will experience more beautiful music in this new chapter of his life.

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