Interviews

Nicole Chamberlain: Composer Interview

Posted by on Apr 2, 2018 in April 2018, Featured, Interviews, Issues | 0 comments

Nicole Chamberlain: Composer Interview

Nicole Chamberlain (b. 1977) is a composer and flutist living in Atlanta, GA. In 2010, Nicole won "Audience Favorite" at the Atlanta Opera's first 24-Hour Opera Project for her opera "Scrub-A-Dub Raw" which resulted in the the Atlanta Opera's first ever commission of the children's opera, "Rabbit Tales", which received over 50 performances and kicked started her career as a composer. Nicole has also been commissioned by groups such as the Georgia Symphony Orchestra, Oklahoma Flute Society, Atlanta Flute Club, Flute Choir of Atlanta, Cuatro Puntos, Dahlia Flute Duo, Clibber the Jones Ensemble, and Hopewell Middle School Symphonic Band among others. She has had works performed at the 2013, 2015, 2016, and 2017 National Flute Association Conventions. She also won the 2013 Areon Flutes International Composition Competition, 2nd place in the 2014 and 2016 Flute New Music Consortium, and 1st place in the 2015 The Flute View's Composition Competition. Nicole received her Bachelors in Music Composition from University of Georgia where she studied with Dr. William Davis, Dr. Leonard Ball, Dr. Lewis Nielson and Dr. Roger Vogel and was selected for masterclasses with Charles Wuorinen and Joan Tower. Nicole, as a flutist, she has appeared with such groups as Georgia Symphony Orchestra, LaGrange Symphony, Gwinnett Ballet, duoATL, Mercury Season, Terminus Ensemble, Chamber Cartel, Perimeter Flutes, neoPhonia, Capitol City Opera, and Orchestra Atlanta. Nicole has participated in Masterclasses with Bradley Garner, Paul Edmund-Davies and Dr.Gordon Cole. Nicole's former flute teachers have included Donna Orbavich (Hong Kong Symphony), Lisa Wienhold (Alabama Symphony), Dr. Ronald Waln (University of Georgia) and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra's principal flutist, Christina Smith. Currently she balances her time composing, teaching students, performing, and avoiding graphic design work as much as possible. Nicole lives in Doraville with her husband, guitarist and composer Brian Chamberlain. For more information visit her website: www.nikkinotes.com How has your journey been as flutist and composer? I think like most musicians, its been a meandering course. I got two undergraduate degrees, a BFA in Digital Media and a BMus in Music Composition. The original plan was to create my own animated films and compose the soundtracks, and I did do some of that for a time after college for a children's multimedia before I realized it wasn't for me. I fell in love with working with live performers and teaching young students. Its easy to want a fixed path about how my career should have played out. But what did I know as a child!?! My tastes have changed and opportunities presented themselves to me that I could have never imagined possible. If I hadn't been open to them, I don't think I could be as happy as I am now. I make choices, and sometimes I re-evaluate my goals and make adjustments. I'm sure 18 year old Nicole would be surprised about how things have turned out, but I can't wait to see what changes may be ahead. Let's face it, its hard. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. What do you like best about composing? There's many aspects to composing that I love. I love my alone time, and there's quite a bit of that as a composer. I love starting a piece and getting a plan figured out. I love problem solving transitions. However, my favorite part is getting...

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Henrik Wiese: Artist Interview

Posted by on Apr 2, 2018 in April 2018, Featured, Interviews, Issues | 0 comments

Henrik Wiese: Artist Interview

Flautist Henrik Wiese is descended from a merchant's family from the city of Hamburg, but he was born in Vienna in 1971. He received his musical education from Ingrid Koch-Dörnbrak and Paul Meisen. In addition he took his degree in Indo-European and general linguistics as well as in musicology at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich. Henrik Wiese won 1st prizes in several competitions, such as in the German National Music Competition (1995), and in the international competitions of the city of Kobe/Japan (1997), Markneukirchen/Germany (1998), Odense/Denmark (1998), and Munich/Germany (2000). As a substitute he gathered first experience in orchestra playing at Munich Philharmonic Orchestra and their former chief conductor Sergiu Celebidache. From 1995 to 2006 he was principal flautist at Bavarian State Opera in Munich (chief conductor Zubin Mehta). Since 2006 Henrik Wiese is principal flautist at Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra (chief conductor Mariss Jansons). Henrik Wiese is a synesthete, e. g. he hears colours. The rare gift of nature is an important source of musical inspiration to him. He played flute concertos not only with the Bavarian State Opera Orchestra and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, but also with the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin, Radio Philharmonic Orchestra Hanover, Polish Chamber Philharmony, Prague Chamber Orchestra, and Munich Chamber Orchestra. His widespread musical activity is particularly established by chamber music recordings. Currently, Henrik Wiese is the Solo-Flautist of the Symphonie-Orchester des Bayerische Rundfunks and teaches at the Hochschule for Künste Bremen.   Can you give us 5 career highlights? This is a difficult question to answer. I have experienced so many highlights of different types. Winning at the German National Music Competition in 1995 and Munich International Music Competition (ARD) in 2000 was an honour I didn’t expect. Musically I was overwhelmed by performances with Carlos Kleiber or Zubin Mehta in my early years at the Bavarian State Opera (Munich). When I started there in September 1995, without any professional experience as a principal flutist, I performed “Lucia di Lammermoor“ with Edita Gruberova, the queen of coloratura in that time, without a rehearsal. We only went through the cadenza in her dressing room once. At the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra (BRSO) the Shostakovich Symphonies with Mariss Jansons inspired me very much or projects with Sir Simon Rattle (e.g. Mahler “Lied von der Erde“). Playing “Der Ring des Nibelungen” with Kirill Pretrenko in Wagner’s Festival Theatre in Bayreuth, Germany was an outstanding highlight in my professional career as an orchestra musician. Moreover, I will never forget the Nielsen concert I played with Herbert Blomstedt, and the Schulhoff Double Concerto with my colleagues, Lukas Kuen and Mariss Jansons. As an editor, I had the honour of editing three Mozart symphonies in Urtext editions for Breitkopf & Härtel.  Two of them are already published, K. 385 “Hafner” and K. 550. How about 3 pivotal moments that were essential to creating the artist that you've become? (1) To win the above mentioned competitions which opened so many doors for me, that I got the chance to play all the flute concerto repertoire with fine orchestras. (2) Entering the Bavarian State Opera. By listening to the world’s best singers I have gained innumerable insights about music. (3) With editing and essay writing, I widened my musical background and found (and founded) my musical personality. What do you like...

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Your Career Starts NOW! Interview with DMA student, Jeiran Hasan

Posted by on Feb 1, 2018 in Articles, Featured, February 2018, Interviews, Issues | 0 comments

Your Career Starts NOW! Interview with DMA student, Jeiran Hasan

7 Tips to Jumpstart Your Career While in School Jeiran Hasan, DMA student at University of Iowa   In today's musical landscape, transitioning from a student to a professional real world musician can be a challenge.  But it doesn't have to be!  I had the opportunity to sit down with 26 year old Jeiran Hasan, who is completing the last year of her DMA at the University of Iowa, and chat with her about her 7 tips to jumpstart your career while in school.  Having a varied skill set and always building on it is key for success while both in and out of school.  Here are Jeiran's tips:   1. Competitions Competitions are a great way to keep playing in front of a jury and also to work on recording and listening to yourself both in recorded and live rounds.  Do as many as possible, and don't get discouraged if you don't pass.  Playing for a varied group of jurors and peers is important, because you never know what connections can come from it in the future. It is also important for networking with the guest jurors and other flutists at the competition, and especially getting valuable feedback from the jurors.  Plus, the more competitions you do, the more repertoire you have learned, and then you have a wider variety you can program on a recital or concert.  Jeiran organizes all the competitions in a detailed Excel list, so she knows the deadlines, application fees, and repertoire list. Be as organized as possible, always!   2. Teaching Teaching is not only a great source of income (hello, competition application fees!), but it also builds experience working with a wide variety of ages and levels, as Jeiran does.  She teaches at a local senior center, a high school (where she conducts sectionals), and also privately.  The senior center was originally a temporary position through the university, but she really enjoyed it and kept it up because of her passion for teaching, and then some of the students wanted private lessons, so she is constantly building her studio through these outlets.  Of course, her love of teaching helps a lot!   3. Masterclasses Similar to teaching, Jeiran enjoys giving as many masterclasses as possible.  Starting regionally and reaching out to local teachers and colleagues at universities is a good way to start.  Her first real masterclass was at last year's NFA masterclass competition, where she was given 15 minutes with a student in front the public and a panel of professional flutists.  Of course, it was a valuable experience (and also ties into doing as many varied competitions as possible), and a good start to get confident giving masterclasses.  Jeiran recently was in her native countries of Azerbaijan and Russia, where she conducted masterclasses in their respective languages (WOW!), which forced herself to think differently in her teaching style.  It is important to keep as active as possible and get as much experience as you can.  And always keep updating your CV.   4. Research As a DMA student, a research and dissertation project is required, and Jeiran's project is quite interesting, as she incorporates her roots and family from Azerbaijan and Russia, and the music and composers of Azerbaijan, which are relatively unknown. (Amirov's "6 Songs" is the most...

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Juliette Hurel: Artist Interview

Posted by on Feb 1, 2018 in Featured, February 2018, Interviews, Issues | 0 comments

Juliette Hurel: Artist Interview

Juliette Hurel is known in both the French and the international music world as a famous flautist. She was unanimously awarded the first prize for flute and the first prize for chamber music at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris and obtained prizes in different competitions such as those in Darmstadt, Kobé, Boekarest and the Jean-Pierre Rampal concours. In 2004 she was nominated for the “Discoveries of the year” in the “Victoires de la Musique Classique”. Juliette is in much demand for chamber music and then performs beside musicians such as Gary Hoffman, Youri Bashmet, Schlomo Mintz, Marielle Normann, Jean-Guihen Queras,Stephen Kovachevich and the Wanderer trio. As a soloist she can be regularly heard with l’Orchestre d’Auvergne, l’Orchestre de chambre de Toulouse, l’Orchestre de Bretagne, l’Orchestre de l’Opéra de Rouen, l’Orchestre Symphonique et Lyrique de Nancy, “Les Siècles” and the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, as well as at well-known venues such as La Cité de la Musique, Grand Théâtre de Provence, la Roque d’Anthéron, les Folles Journées de Nantes, Festival de la Meije, Colmar, Auvers-sur-Oise and les Flâneries Musicales de Reims. Through her fondness for contemporary music she has had the opportunity to work with composers such as Pierre Boulez, Pascal Dusapin, Philippe Hersant and Eric Tanguy. Since 1998 Juliette has been solo flautist with Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, first conducted by Valery Gergiev and since 2008 conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Juliette Hurel has made various recordings with pianist Hélène Couvert. The recordings which won prizes and were warmly received by the critics include : Martinu/Prokoviev (Lyrinx) ; French repertoire XXth century for (Naïve-Valois); Haydn Flute Sonatas (Zig-Zag Territoires). Further, she recorded the concertos for flute and orchestra by C.P.E. Bach with l’Orchestre d’Auvergne under the baton of Arie van Beek, “Impressions françaises” -works with piano by Debussy, Fauré, Poulenc-, both for Zig-Zag Territoires, Her album “Dawn of Romanticism" has been released in 2014 for Naïve. Her last CD is dedicated to the Mozart complete Flute Quartets with members of Quatuor Voce. This recording which appeared last June for AlphaClassics was also highly acclaimed and welcomed by the French and international press.   Can you give us 5 career highlights?   February 1998 : won the position at Rotterdam Philharmonic orchestra (20 years ago!!!) Each of my CD releases! Première of "Love songs," Mantovani concerto with Yannick Nézet Séguin and my orchestra (feb 2016) How about 3 pivotal moments that were essential to creating the artist that you've become?   Winning the position in Rotterdam gave me confidence and stopping having lessons allowed me to become really me! Working with great musicians as Hélène Couvert (pianist with whom I play for 25 years),Valery Gergiev,Yannick Nézet-Séguin who gave me (still give!) so much inspiration. What do you like best about performing?   I love the contact with the public! Teaching?   To hear the progress of the students! CD releases?   March:"Inspiration" JS Bach (alpha) Programme Bach (CD) Partita pour flûte seule BWV 1013 (10') Sonate en trio BWV 1038  (8') Suite n.2 BWV 1067 (19') Easter Oratorio, BWV 249:Seele, deine Spezereien (9’) (soprano,flute,orgue portatif,cello,contrebasse) Kaffee cantata BWV 211:Ei wie schmeckt  (4’30) (soprano,flute,clavecin,cello) Cantata, BWV 82a : "Ich habe genug" (7’30) (soprano,cordes,flute,clavecin) Matthäus-Passion BWV 244:Aus Liebe  (4'30) (soprano,flûte,cors anglais) What does your schedule look like for the next 6 months?   Of course, orchestra with great musicians (David Zinman,Truls Mork,Lahav Shani,our new conductor from next september) Concert in North of France with Hélène...

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The Gonjiam Flute Festival

Posted by on Jan 2, 2018 in Featured, Interviews, Issues, January 2018 | 0 comments

The Gonjiam Flute Festival

Interview: Soohyun Paik   Can you talk about the purpose of GMF?   We are welcoming the 3rd Gonjiam Flute Festival in February 2018 at the same time the XXIII PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games will be held in Korea.   The main philosophy of Gonjiam Music Festival is making heritage in music. It is not only for the glory of the world’s top artists. There are respectable artists who are legendary flutists and amazing young artists who are flying over to be part of the best flute festival in Korea. We are very proud of all the splendid artists from the past, present, and future who gather at the same time and at the same place to make our heritage and legacy in flute and music.   Gonjiam Flute Festival is not only a big flute festival all of the flute world's stars participate in. It is a collaboration of the world's top artists to learn about the lives and dreams of the next generation of artists and create a future through music. Music is an inspiration, and it enriches our lives and all others thereafter. As musicians we wish to share our role and our value, made together.   Gonjiam Music Festival also believes in serving our community, so we are donating funds towards cancer treatment and research at Seoul National University Hospital and the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) for the treatment and research of juvenile diabetes.   What kinds of difficulties did you experience when working on the festival? Do you have some fun stories to share?    As a matter of fact, the process of preparing for this big festival was not easy at all even though GMF has the best team. There are two directors, a chief operations officer, a project manager and 10-15 staff members plus our agency BomArts, who is organizing the gala concert at Seoul Arts Center. Personally, I cannot forget the episode we had with the Sir James Galway Flute Festival on our first day of the camp. We realized we had made a huge mistake 30 minutes before masterclasses were supposed to start. The room arrangements were not ready at all for holding all the masterclasses. It was really hectic, and we spent much of our time just pointlessly blaming each other. We were only amateurs then, we still believe we are, but every year we are more becoming relaxed and able to solve problems without things getting hectic because things are always happening all over the place .   Our internal communication mostly goes through Messenger. You can find everything in our company chatroom from business to personal matters, jokes, fights, musical issues. We sometimes have up to a hundred messages per day. Sometimes we joke that if we ever publish a book about our festival, we should just fill it with our online chats. We’re sure it would make us a fortune and be more famous than the festival itself Philipp and I always say that we are so happy to have Charles and Ilkoo to mediate things between us, as we have different opinions quite often. Usually our big fights are about small things like poster design. We hope to share these hilarious memories from the history of GMF someday.   Special point?   Many people ask what makes us special. We believe it...

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Nicolas Duchamp: Artist Interview

Posted by on Jan 2, 2018 in Featured, Interviews, Issues, January 2018 | 0 comments

Nicolas Duchamp: Artist Interview

This past fall, I had the opportunity to interview flutist Nicolas Duchamp about his life, flute playing, and his Gaubert project. It is a wide ranging interview touching on many flutistic matters.  -Barbara Siesel   B: How did you get started on the flute?   N: I was born in Bordeaux – Bordeaux has two great traditions, wine and flute! George Barrere was born in Bordeaux, as was the father of Paul Taffanel, Jule Taffanel, who was a fantastic flutist too.  Paul Taffanel was born there too, so the French flute tradition was born in Bordeaux. The great tradition of French flute playing is connected to the Louis Lot instruments from Normandy, so many flutists and French flute music of the early 20th century were influenced by these flutists and the Louis Lot instruments. I was extremely lucky and realized at the age of 3 that I wanted to be a flutist. My grandmother was an opera singer and she said—If you really want to play the flute then you will study music and music theory with me until you are 12 years old and then you will start learning the instrument. Eventually at age 11 my parents brought me to the Bordeaux Conservatory to study with Stefan Boudot, who was a student of Moyse. He was a great teacher, very serious and very serious with me. We had a love/hate relationship, since for him it was not entertainment, or fun; flute was a tradition and people took it very seriously, so I had to learn to practice and work hard. I studied for 4 years at the Bordeaux Conservatory, and at 15 I played for Rampal in Paris and went on to the Creteil Conservatory near Paris and studied with Maurice Peurot who taught me how to use the instrument, to really be in tune with the music, and finally at 19 years old I studied with Maxence Larrieu at the Lyon Conservatory.   B: What is your philosophy of playing the instrument?   N: Flute is the most natural instrument! It’s unique in that when you play you don’t see the instrument, don’t see the air, or your fingers. You must listen carefully to what you are doing and have a great ear to develop your sound. This means that your sound becomes a reflection of your personality, so don’t try to imitate others as it won’t work!! You find your sound and you find yourself on the instrument. There’s a lot of confusion about sound projection, big is not 100% of the character of the instrument. The flute is colorful, resonant, so use it that way with the help of your body – this is the most organic way to create your sound.   B: Tell us about your Gaubert project.   N: In 2008 I was teaching in one of the Paris Conservatories, and a new student entered the class; she was very gifted, someone special, and 2 years later she came in with an old case in bad shape. She said – “I want to show you something, I heard you playing and thought you should see it.” It was Louis Lot flute #1986 made in 1874 and she said “it’s from my husbands family and was the flute of Phillip Gaubert.” The flute had...

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Guilherme Andreas: Artist Interview

Posted by on Jan 2, 2018 in Featured, Interviews, Issues, January 2018 | 0 comments

Guilherme Andreas: Artist Interview

Guilherme Andreas is Brazilian flutist currently studying with Professor Emily Skala at the Peabody Institute of the Jonhs Hopkins University. Prior to moving to the USA, Andreas served as principal flute with the Brazilian Marines Wind Symphony in Rio de Janeiro. He also holds degrees from James Madison University and the Brazilian Conservatory of Music.  Please give us 3 pivotal moments that were essential to creating the artist that you've become?  There were three important moves that changed the course of my development as an artist. First, I won a position to perform with the Brazilian Marine Wind Symphony and I moved to Rio de Janeiro from my family home in Brasilia. This was the first occasion I had to work in a professional ensemble. A really profound part of this experience was the six months of boot camp required to begin employment. Here I met and worked with people from all different kinds of backgrounds which was important because it was an opportunity to learn to be compassionate and understanding and to study human behavior. And in many ways it was truly like survival camp. We learned a lot of self-sufficiency skills, some of which were very unpleasant! This experience changed the way I see myself relative to others, and certainly it enhanced the way we played together in ensemble. When we concertized, we travelled the entire country. Some of the trips lasted three months. Many people do not realize what an enormous country Brazil is!  Living in Rio brought me the opportunity to perform many recitals in some very beautiful historical venues. In this way I mastered a lot of repertoire.   Another pivotal experience in my musical pursuits came when I won the Música no Museu National Competition for young musicians. The reward for this success was a full scholarship to attend James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA where I earned my Masters in Music Performance and Pedagogy. This was the first occasion I lived in a foreign country, which taught me how different social conventions are in these two countries. For example, something that's very different is the interaction between professors and students. In Brazil we are not formal at all and students and teachers are on a first name basis. We don't use titles. The learning environment is much more friendly, casual and supportive in Brazil than I find it to be in the States. But the institutions here are extremely well-organized by comparison.   Most recently, I moved from the Appalachian mountains of Virginia to the city of Baltimore on the Chesapeake Bay. I was happy to be back in a cosmopolitan environment but it was not the city life I expected, it is so very different from Rio and São Paulo. Here I was given the opportunity to learn about the racial divide that I have so often heard of in the United States. It was a very different form of culture shock than I anticipated. Although my goal of studying in a prestigious music conservatory was finally being realized and I expected to be able to focus 100% on my flute playing, in some very real and interesting ways the socio-political environment in Baltimore served as interference in my studies and as a hard lesson in reality. On the bright side,...

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Yu Yuan: Artist Interview

Posted by on Dec 1, 2017 in December 2017, Featured, Interviews, Issues | 0 comments

Yu Yuan: Artist Interview

Yu Yuan is a student at the Conservatoire National de Musique et Danse de Paris in the class of Professor Philippe Bernold, assisted by Florence Souchard-Delépine. In 2012, he won first prize in the children's section of the inaugural China Flute Association Competition and in 2015, he was given an honorable mention at the 67th International Prague Spring Music Competition. This year he was the winner of the 7th Krakow International Flute Competition and the 9th Kobe International Flute Competition. How did you feel during the Kobe Competition? I came into Kobe from France, so one problem I had was jetlag. I was really tired after I arrived, so I think I played quite badly in the first round. I played better after that, but there were always things in each piece I wish I had played differently. I was also very stressed throughout the competition as the level was really high and I knew I couldn’t make too many mistakes. How did you prepare? Due to high school and conservatory classes, I didn’t have that much time, so I really had to focus while I was practicing. I dedicated five months of practice for the Kobe pieces, working with my teacher, Professor Philippe Bernold. One of his suggestions was to go to museums and listen to concerts during this time, to keep my mind open and ideas alive. This also helped to release stress. Which pieces did you have to play? I had to choose between the pieces set by the Kobe organizers. For me the most interesting pieces were in the second round. The piece by Michel Blavet is a typical French baroque piece that is not very well known, but is so rich and beautiful. My second piece for this round, Andersen’s ‘Ballade et Danse des Sylphes’ is also not well known. The most common choice for this round was Jolivet’s ‘Chant de Linos’, so perhaps playing this piece allowed me to stand out. What was the most challenging part? One challenging problem was that I took part in the Krakow competition in April, with Kobe starting in May. I had to prepare all the pieces for both competitions, with only one piece used in both, and I wanted to play as many as I could by heart. Learning and preparing so many pieces was exhausting, but the results made it worthwhile. Any advice for young flutists who’s dream is to win Kobe? While participating in competitions, they should aim to win first prize. I think some people are too modest, feeling that they could never win, and therefore don’t perform as well as they could. Young flutists should look for the teacher who is most suited to them, someone who they like to listen to and like to study with. Everyone’s ideal teacher will be different, so choose the person who is best for you. I think it’s also important to play in front of others, performing your music. It is on stage that you become a musician. Finally, never be discouraged! Keep taking part in competitions, concerts and orchestras. Yu Yuan's YouTube channel:...

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Cathi Marro: Artist Interview

Posted by on Dec 1, 2017 in December 2017, Featured, Interviews, Issues | 0 comments

Cathi Marro: Artist Interview

Cathi Marro is a professional free-lance musician, educator and artist in Miami, FL. She specializes in flute and alto flute, playing in several ensembles ranging from classical symphony orchestras, to flute choirs, rock bands, sacred ensembles and even a performance art troupe, Kunstwaffen 1918. Daily Cat-Hi paintings are an important part of her day. What inspired you to start painting? My friend Pip Brant, an art professor at Florida International University, challenged me to draw one cat a week.  It sounded like a good idea but I didn’t do it right away.  A few months later I saw some paint on sale so I bought it.  Perhaps out of guilt for waiting so long to act on her suggestion I began painting a cat EVERY NIGHT! When did you paint your first cat? I’ve been painting these cats for over 3 years now. How many cats have you had in your life?  names? and a brief sentence about each. Spike and Jazz were my first two cats.  They were litter mates. Then Mufasa had to live with us since he got separated from his mommy somehow at a very young age. JP I adopted from The Cat Network (an organization for which I volunteer and donate art and $) 18 years ago.  He still lives with me.  Scooter was found under a copy machine at my Sunday AM gig, but had to be re-homed to another flute friend’s house 12 years later. My tortoise shell, CC came with my husband and much tortitude (yes it’s a real thing!!)  My baby INKY is my gorgeous black house panther. Does your cat enjoy your practicing? CC used to love music.  She was even seen crawling into my lap while I played piccolo!  The others all tolerate my playing except JP who can’t stand high notes.  He cries and cries when I play piccolo or when my students or I play the upper range of our flutes. I love your cat pin!   Where can we get more of these? Thanks.  If you see me at a flute convention I might have some on me or try my website www.cat-hi.com I now have a couple different pin designs as well as T shirts, pillows, baby onesies, prints and original paintings. Where did you study, with whom, and what are you up to? Growing up in the Greater Boston Area, I was fortunate to study with Laura Heiss (daughter of composer John Heiss) as a child.  I went on to earn a Bachelor of Music in flute performance.  My husband surprised me a couple years ago with a bunch of Skype lessons with Robert Dick! These days I am a freelance musician.  I play in a couple orchestras and several flute choirs as well as chamber ensembles.  I teach private lessons in Miami.  My favourite things these days are working and performing with local singer-songwriter Maria Murawka and my newest adventure Kunstwaffen 1918 which is an extremely creative performance art...

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Starting a Flute Choir. By Ray-Michael Kauffman

Posted by on Nov 1, 2017 in Articles, Essays, Featured, Interviews, Issues, November 2017 | 0 comments

Starting a Flute Choir.  By Ray-Michael Kauffman

  What inspired you to start a flute choir?   I love playing the flute, and I love performing. I had played in flute choir ensembles growing up as well as in college and even now, in many flute choir groups I play with. I also believe that flute choirs have such a unique and special sound, with all the timbres of different flutes coming together making something magical. I concluded that there needs to be a choir closer in my area. The area I live in is an hour to a major city such as Philadelphia and Harrisburg, but there was no ensemble for adults like myself that had formal music training, but were not professional flutists and worked in other career paths. And I concluded that a lower key, “not-so -serious” group in my area would be well received. With my experience in different ensembles, I had a strong feeling what would work and what would not. I live in a thriving and quickly growing area (Lancaster County, PA), especially culture-related with many wonderful galleries and art studios. There’s a true need for varied musical groups that are not as professional as an orchestra in many areas across the country. Many of the average citizens in these areas tend to be more down-to-earth and people who really do not have exposure to classical music, and these citizens may find the traditional classical music stuff boring. Audience members who attend symphony concerts are geared especially for that. Smaller non-traditional adult musicians who are not professionals, can play various genres of music exposing the public to a diverse and entertaining program. I also knew that due to the high demand and all the responsibilities the adult hobbyist or non-traditional flutist had in their lives (such as children, working and working overtime, taking care of family, and other priorities) that the more low-key model would be well suited for this area. How did you find the members of your flute choir?   Kismet. I had returned to flute playing after many years of not playing due to adult life changes, and started taking lessons with Morgann E Davis Parrish many years ago. Through Morgann I met Dot Lippart, a wonderful flutist who also wanted a choir locally. We had talked about starting one, but it didn’t come in to fruition until meeting Jenny Fritsch at an adult flute summer program by The Pocono flute society. Marta Oberlin, who is the president of the Pocono Flute Society, had so much great advice and experience with starting a flute group. Jenny, Dot, and I started talking there and we all wanted a choir in our area. We enlisted William Hoff, who had worked as a professional flute player to help our group. With continued input and advice from Marta O., Morgann D., and from former flute professor at Drew University Dr. Virginia Schulze-Johnson, who William and I both knew, the four of us, William, Jenny, Dot, and I met several times and brainstormed about starting a choir. We thought it was prudent to post info about the flute group forming, in new papers, stores like grocery stores, libraries, at churches and with the social media (which is a big help) as well word of mouth. I learned that by being a musician, I know...

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