She started dancing when she was about four years old.  Then, at age 12, her dad played a Beatles CD while in the car and she heard “I Saw Her Standing There.”  After that, it left no doubt in the mind of Natalie Stitak that music was in her future.

“I wanted to play like George Harrison,” says the 18-year old Port Clinton High School graduate and first-year Terra State Community College Music Technology student.  In addition to guitar, Natalie also plays the cello and viola and sings.  It was in high school that she decided to pursue a career in music after considering a long list of possibilities.  “I always came back to music because nothing else seemed more exciting.  It was part of my life and I couldn’t leave it.”

After deciding that music was her future, Natalie chose Terra State to further her education.  “During high school, we had a musician come into orchestra one day from Terra State, and he was an artist in residence and that drew me to Terra State.”

Celtic music has been a big influence on Natalie.  This has led her to begin writing her own songs and taking the next step in her music career.  She is now in the process of recording her first album at Terra State’s Route 53 Recording Studio.

“I decided to do this myself.  I am taking song-writing lessons at Terra State and last semester I wrote a Celtic song that the professors really, really liked.   This semester I thought that I am really going to challenge myself and will write more songs and put a little album together.”

The album will feature songs that she has written with her on guitar and vocals.  Her dad contributed by playing the cello on one track.  Natalie is hoping to add the viola and percussion to the album.

Stitak has three or four songs already recorded at Terra State for the album.  Being her first recording, she says it has been a process.  “I’m definitely learning a lot about retakes, listening back to redo a part.  It is almost like you are putting together a piece of art.  You are drawing something and you erase it.  It’s definitely a process.” According to Stitak, the biggest hurdle in making the recording is coordinating schedules to get into the studio.

Stitak says Terra State has helped her in the production of the album.  “I’ve learned to look at a song to see what makes it good, but not over the top.  Basically, making a song a song.”  When it comes to prospective students looking to Terra State to further their education in music, she recommends they know their long-term goals.  “Terra State is what you make it.  You have to make it what you want to be.”

Stitak will continue working on the album in the fall.  In the meantime, you can check out Stitak’s music talent on her Facebook page “Natalie Stitak Music” and on YouTube.