VIU in the news: Musician finally follows dream

November 8, 2011 - 10:38pm

By Kathryn-Jane Hazel, Nanaimo News Bulletin


In 1963 University of B.C. student Norm Abbey had to make a tough decision. Would he major in science or music?


He chose science, and sold his French horn to help pay for his tuition.


“David Suzuki? was still teaching at UBC then and biology and molecular genetics were at a pretty interesting stage,” he said.


But music remained a passion. He sang in the Malaspina Choir for almost 20 years, belonged to a Nanaimo Conservatory of Music recorder group, and was a founding member of a brass quintet, the Nob Hill Brass, named after the neighbourhood where he lived and the group rehearsed.


Now retired, and at age 65 able to attend university classes for free, he decided to get the music degree he had to leave behind almost 50 years ago, and is enrolled full-time in the music program at Vancouver Island University – and he’s loving it.


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