Senior Spotlight on Winnie Yuan (I)


(Source: Alex Strand (I))

Various forms of artistic expression — visual arts, music and dance — shine throughout the Boston Latin School community. It is rare, however, for an individual to embody talent in all three areas. Winnie Yuan (I) defies the odds by matching this description, claiming the “Most Artistic” superlative for the graduating class of 2023.

Yuan’s love of the arts began while she was a young child. Immersing herself in the arts at the age of three, Yuan entered the performance world as a   dancer. A versatile dance student, Yuan embraced a number of diverse dance styles, including ballet, tap, jazz and Chinese folk dance.

In this wide range of dance styles, Yuan found her first outlet for creative expression, with a lot of her passion going into her dance performances. “I am a very emotional artist,” Yuan says.

Continuing her love for dance today, Yuan is involved in dance activities outside of school, including classes and a competitive dance team.

While dance may have been her first love, Yuan’s artistic talent includes music as well. She has played flute in BLS’s Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble since freshman and senior year, respectively.

Yuan also shares her versatile musical talents in flute and alto saxophone in the Big Band. Her excellence in performance has been recognized by the BLS Music Department: she played a flute solo at the 2023 Cape Cod Jazz Festival during Big Band’s set, where the band took home a gold medal.

Yuan’s love for music does not stop at the instrumental level. She sings solo and with various groups, recently participating in BLS Asian Students in Action (A.S.I.A.)’s 23rd Annual Holiday Sing-Off, and Vietnamese Students’ Society’s Annual ​​Tet Festival Show. In fact, Yuan’s band, “Winniesaurus and the Pterodactyls” took home the honor of first place in A.S.I.A.’s Holiday Sing-Off with their outstanding performance of “Let It Go” from Disney’s Frozen (2013). 

“[In music,] you can sing and play instruments […] so it’s very versatile,” Yuan shares. “With singing and playing an instrument, there is less pressure, so it is more fun.”

Yuan also continues to develop her drawing and painting skills. She will complete her senior year with an AP Art portfolio focusing on self-discovery throughout teenhood. When asked how she manages all of these activities, she responds, “I really have to be in the mood to create something.” The most important thing to Yuan is having fun, which is easy to do when immersing herself in art. “[I feel like] art is a really good form of self expression […] whatever mood you’re in, art is always a good outlet,” she remarks.

Yuan’s words of wisdom to aspiring artists are, “It is never too late to try anything. If you want to pursue any kind of art, just do it, and you won’t regret it […]; you won’t have to wonder what you could have been.” Yuan continues to follow her own advice, creating and developing new art as she wraps up her senior year. We can’t wait to see where her artistic tenacity takes her in the future!

Yuan’s art is on display during the BLS Spring Concerts, and you can also catch her live musical performances at this year’s Asian Night on May 12.