The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Olivias of the oboe section

Olivia+Hofmann+24+and+Olivia+Bamford+24+both+transitioned+from+violin+to+oboe+before+high+school.
Photo by Austin Carey for The Lafayette
Olivia Hofmann ’24 and Olivia Bamford ’24 both transitioned from violin to oboe before high school.

Olivia Hofmann ’24 and Olivia Bamford ‘24 knew that they would be a dynamic duo as soon as they met.

Hofmann and Bamford are both oboe players in the college’s concert band and due to their common names and interests, the pair connected immediately.

“On the first day of band, I remember saying, ‘Hi, my name’s Olivia and I’m a freshman, I play the oboe,’ and then [Bamford] went next and it was literally the same exact thing echoed, and I just remember thinking, ‘This is gonna be the most iconic oboe duo,’” Hofmann said. 

Bamford and Hofmann, both of whom are now in their final year of playing with the concert band, each have several years of oboe playing under their belts. They both started playing the oboe early in life and have often been the sole oboe player in their respective musical groups.

Hofmann was first introduced to the oboe in the fourth grade by her music teacher. At the time, she was playing the violin.

“They come into the fourth-grade classrooms and the music teacher demonstrates all the instruments available to play for band,” Hofmann said. “I heard the oboe and [thought] it sounded really cool and unique. Then I talked to my orchestra teacher … and she told me that it would be a great idea because I would get to play all the solos … then I realized that I hated playing solos and it was really lonely, but I still really loved it and I stuck with it.”

Bamford also initially played violin but stopped around 6th grade. As a replacement, she was drawn to the oboe. 

“I always wanted to play a wind instrument and I kind of wanted to be quirky and different,” Bamford said. “I really just wanted to play the oboe. And honestly, I watched a lot of Drake and Josh as a kid and I know the sister in it plays oboe, so that’s how I knew about it.” 

As their time at Lafayette comes to a close, both Olivias have fond memories of their time in the band and at school. According to Hofmann, being able to play in the band as a non-music major is something she appreciates about being a Lafayette student.

“I think for me, something awesome about Lafayette is that at a big state school, the band is reserved for music majors and people who want to professionally play an instrument,” Hofmann said. “It’s been so cool to be able to play an instrument [here] with people from other majors as kind of a side activity that doesn’t end … It really brings together a lot of people from every aspect of this campus.”

Bamford felt similarly, also viewing the band as a connection to her time in high school.

“I really like the continuity of it,” Bamford said. “I think band is the only thing that I also did in high school. It’s a huge stress reliever for me.”

Bamford and Hofmann will be in action on the oboe at the band’s fall concert at the William’s Center for the Arts on Dec. 9.

Assistant Business Manager Olivia Bamford ’24 did not contribute writing or reporting.

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About the Contributors
Kendal Davis, Staff Culture Writer
Austin Carey, Staff Photographer

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