You see, there’s this young lady named Rebekah Soukup.  She’s maybe 10 years old.  Her mom, Krista, sees to it that Rebecca and her sister get to experience many things.  You will find the Soukups at a museum or at a play.  Maybe they’ll take in a class somewhere in town, like an art class or a writing class.  Sometimes that experience is just a walk in the woods or playing in the town park.

And then there’s another Rebecca.   Rebecca Yeh, that is.  She just finished a year as Miss Minnesota, which also included being a finalist in the Miss America Pageant.  She’s a scholar, a public speaker, and a musician.  All this, and she attends college where she is more than a student – she’s active in service organizations as well.

These two Rebeccas (or Rebekahs) are connected.   They grew up in the same town – and as a matter of fact, I recently learned that they were neighbors at one time.  The younger Rebekah always admired the other Rebecca in those years, and as Rebecca Yeh advanced into her young womanhood, Rebekah Soukup watched and admired and learned.

This past weekend, the Lakes Area Music Festival offered its first concert of the year.  The program consisted of performers from the area, including a string trio of high school students, a brass duet by a husband and wife, a local singing group that performed a set of madrigals, a cello solo, and a chamber orchestra…. and the concert concluded with Rebecca Yeh playing her violin on the last movement of the Mendelsohn violin concerto in E minor.

The young Rebekah was in the audience, and you can bet she took notice of her former neighbor.  The music was exciting, electric, classic.  Young Rebekah had already visited with Rebecca the violinist before the concert (see the picture) where they reconnected in a great moment even before the audience started filing into the auditorium.  (The audience by the way, numbered somewhere around 500…)


becc and becc


This photo, taken by Rebekah’s mom Krista, is captioned this way:

My Rebekah was elated to see and hear Princess Rebecca Miss Minnesota and LOVES holding the bragging rights to “Princess Rebecca used to live next door to me.” Ever since the Miss America pageant, my Rebecca has been counting the days to get her violin. Thank you Rebecca for your music and inspiration!

Now here’s the deal.  What a wonderful thing that these two have connected – not only as accomplished musician to aspiring musician, but neighbor to neighbor – and all the other ways you can say it.  This kind of connection is not merely idol worship or a young fan and her hero — it is a strong bond of respect.

For these two – and at least on this particular day – music was the generator – or maybe even the amplifier – of this respect.

So then, I can imagine a time in the not so distant future when Rebekah the younger will be on stage with her OWN violin, and Rebecca the Princess will be in the audience, watching and appreciating the performance.

How wonderful for them to have this bond, and how great for us to have the chance to see it.


The website for the music festival is  More concerts to come this month …. check it out.

Krista Soukup is a literary agent.  Her website is

PS – in a totally unrelated note,  I misnumbered my weeks, so here’s no. 27, out of order, but still a weekly journal nonetheless.  Next week will be 31, right back on schedule.