Hlavacek enrolls in Studio West, pursues music production career path

You can’t describe Chrysta Hlavacek (12) without using the word “music.” Never seeming to leave the house without her earphones, Hlavacek has always felt a strong connection to music.

“I’ve been into music ever since I was little and dreamed about being in the industry,” she said.

What first triggered her interest in music was Linkin Park, a rock band prominent in the early 2000s. Back in elementary school, Hlavacek immediately fell in love with the passion within the music and that spark continues to exist in her today.

“I started listening to all types of music by the time I went into middle school, and it was then that I started looking into production,” she said. “I started playing around with my computer and making beats that I liked, as well as writing songs  and recording to them.”

Before that, Hlavacek had been a singer-songwriter. During her early high school years, listening to a lot of bands inspired Hlavacek to create her own band with her friends. Soon, it became clear that her passion was much bigger than her peers.

“I then began doing my own thing in music which has led me to the point I am now,” she said.

This was when her interest in music production really began to blossom. Now, as her high school days become numbered, Hlavacek has begun taking the next step toward a career in music.

“In high school, I really started to put myself out there for the first time and [tried] to get people to listen to the things that I’ve made,” she said

Unlike most, Hlavacek has chosen the path of music production, a career that  provides her with the opportunity to gain exposure to many genres of music, as well as the technology behind much of the music we listen to today.

“I’m choosing the production side of music more so than any other part because I enjoy creating the beat and sounds more than I enjoy hearing my voice,” she said.

In order to really dive into music production, this past month, Hlavacek has enrolled herself in a youth program at Studio West, a San Diego-based recording studio.

This studio not only creates music and book reading recordings, but it also serves as a  music production school. Studio West provides programs for adults to obtain a diploma in the Recording Arts and to prepare students for careers in fields like music production, game audio, live sound, audio post-production and video production.

The studio also provides youth programs for high schoolers like Hlavacek to get a taste of what the music industry is like. There, not only is Hlavacek able to learn about the music industry, but she is also able to experience firsthand how professional musicians work.

“Having a job that involves making music for talented artists is my dream job, and going to Studio West help[s] work towards that,” she said. “They are teaching me music theory and how to set up tracks for certain genres.”

Classes at Studio West are very different from a conventional classroom. The class sizes are smaller and more personalized.

“At the studio, you have a seat with a keyboard, Mac computer installed with various types of production softwares, and headphones,” she said. “The teacher then explains different types of important factors you need to know in order to create the music you want, then allows you to mess around with the software.”

To Hlavacek, it’s a place where everyone is truly interested in what they’re doing. Every class, she is able to learn so much and come closer and closer to working in an industry she’s aspired to be in for so long.

“The instructors are an inspiration to me because they graduated from Studio West, and are now producing music for upcoming artists,” she said.

After high school, Hlavacek wants to continue learning at Studio West while taking classes at a local community college.

“I plan on going to a community college to finish my general education and possibly learn more about production in other classes,” she said.

At only 17 years old and already knowing what she want to do with the rest of her life, Hlavacek demonstrates what it means to take a dream and turn it into a reality.