Mahima Daniel-Poulose expresses herself through her various instruments

A photo of Mahima

Mahima Daniel-Poulose

A photo of Mahima

It took junior Mahima Daniel-Poulose seven years to earn student of the month at her music academy.

Although this treacherously long wait would leave many discouraged, it didn’t diminish any of the passion that Mahima has for playing instruments. Rather, in that time, she has come to take up a range of new difficult instruments from the piano to the guitar to the drums.

“[The drums] are a lot harder than the other instruments: you’re constantly counting, and a ton of different stuff is happening at once,” Mahima said. “[But,] I really enjoy playing the guitar—that’s also really challenging as well [and] I think all of them are a lot harder than piano. I’m better at the piano, but I enjoy playing guitar the most.”

Even though the instruments that Mahima has learned to play are, to varying degrees, challenging, it isn’t the only way that she challenges herself. On top of just learning how to play the instruments, Mahima chooses to learn an array of different genres—particularly due to her and her music teacher’s differing styles of music. However, all these challenges have given her something merely having to listen to music might not have: perspective.

Experiencing playing these instruments first-hand has allowed Mahima to look at music in a different fashion—she is able to cherish and appreciate each instrument individually for the sounds that they produce.

“If you play the same song with different instruments, it’s like a different point of view of the song,” Mahima said. “I just really enjoy that aspect of it. You can pick out different parts of the song.”

Just as Mahima’s instruments have given her a newfound appreciation for the sounds and perspective of music, the music that Mahima plays has become a way of expressing herself; they have become an outlet for anything that she may be feeling. 

Whether you speak the same language or not, music is something that anyone from anywhere can understand. Music is a universal language, and that is exactly what Mahima loves about it. Through the motley of songs that she plays, Mahima is able to connect with those around her in a way that she otherwise may not have been able to.

Just playing a song, I feel like everyone can connect to it. When you play the perfect song, it’s just so beautiful, and it just makes you feel a lot happier.

— Mahima Daniel-Poulose

“It’s more of just a way to express myself,” Mahima said. “Just playing a song, I feel like everyone can connect to it. When you play the perfect song, it’s just so beautiful, and it just makes you feel a lot happier. I love the sound the instruments make, and also every instrument sounds different when you play it a different way, so I just find that really interesting”

However, this passion Mahima has for music isn’t something that she keeps to herself. Although she may not be in a band, Mahima finds other ways to share her music with those around her such as at her music academy’s recitals.

Even though these recitals may only happen in the spring and in the fall, they give Mahima an opportunity to show off her passion for music by playing all three of her instruments. As stressful as it may be to have to play all of her instruments in a single performance, the euphoria that Mahima feels while playing outweighs any sense of chaos that there may be.

“[At my recitals,] I play all my three instruments in one time frame,” Mahima said. “So, it’s kind of difficult backstage to switch all my instruments and then get the songs going too, but I really enjoy it. I do the same thing in the spring, and they have this theater where they rent out this grand piano too. It’s super pretty, and it sounds amazing.”

Mahima has found a fascination with more than just the sounds of music but with the instruments themselves—it is with these instruments that she is able to express however she may feel.

This is more than a fleeting adoration for music; learning and playing new instruments is something Mahima sees happening now and long into the future.

“I always like playing new instruments,” Mahima said. “It’s very complicated. I’ll even pick up the ukelele sometimes, too, because I find it similar to the guitar. I think that with [having already] learned different instruments, it’s easier to learn other instruments now. I’ll probably pick up a couple of others as I get older. I think it’s just a good skill to learn.”