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Convention in Charlotte

Lisa Garner Santa and Patricia George | July August 2011

Evening Gala Concerts
   Each night at 8 pm world-class flutists perform at the Belk Theater. Thursday features early music with traverso virtuoso Rachel Brown and the Dorian Consort. Works include J.S. Bach’s Brandenburg No. 5, Orchestra Suite No. 2 in B Minor and the A minor Partita and sonatas by Quantz.
   After the concert head back to the Westin to attend the Spiral of Sound: The Healing Art of Music presented by Candace Keach or join Jamie Baum and her jazz quartet as they perform a diverse selection of jazz standards sprinkled with a few surprises. 
Friday evening do not miss the World Music Gala Concert that highlights the convention theme: Unity Through Diversity: Many Flutists, One World with performances by Omar Faruk Tekbilek, a Middle Eastern Music specialist who plays an array of classical, folk, Arabic and Egyptian music and Grammy Award winner Rhonda Larson.
   After the Gala listen to Nelson Rangell, known primarily for contemporary/pop and smooth jazz music, perform at the Late Nite Jazz at the Westin or enjoy an Irish Session with Mithril. Irish flutists should bring their flutes to play along.
The Concerto Gala on Saturday is conducted by Bruno Ferrandis and opens with Mike Wofford’s specially commissioned Tapestry 39 for strings, followed by the Professional Flute Choir and the Jazz Flute Big Band. Jean Ferrandis, Holly Hofmann, Christina Jennings, Marina Piccinini, and Carol Wincenc will perform concertos by Gordeli, Foss, Uebayshi, Schnyder, and Jobim. After the concert, enjoy Late Nite Jazz with the NFA Jazz Flute Big Band. Ali Ryerson, Roger Neumann, and Bryan Kennard lead winners of the NFA Jazz Flute big Band Competition in a performance with special guest appearances by Holly Hofmann and Madeline Vergari (aka Madeline Neumann, NFA Convention Director).

   The NFA sponsors 15 competitions and four scholarships to select outstanding flutists to perform at conventions. There are five competitions for soloists, five masterclass competitions, and five competitions to perform in flute choirs and jazz big bands. The final round of the High School Soloist competition begins on Thursday at 9 am with finalists performing a newly commissioned work, Telemann Fantasia No. 2 in A Minor and the Dutilleux Sonatine. On Friday observe the Young Artist Competition Semi-finals at 9 am with the finals on Sunday at 12:30. Required competition repertoire includes works by La Montaine, Paganini, Offermans, Piston, C.P.E. Bach and a newly commissioned work.
   On Friday at 10 am, Jean Ferrandis instructs performers chosen in the Masterclass Performers Competition. The winners perform music by Bozza and Copland. Paul Edmund-Davies teaches the Orchestral Audition Masterclass on Saturday at 10 am concentrating on excerpts by Beethoven, Hindemith, Mahler, and Ravel. Bring your music to jot down ideas for performing these works. Other competition winners will play in classes led by Rachel Brown, Jamie Baum, and Paula Robison.  
Composers and Scholars
   Composer spotlights include recitals of works by Jean Michel Damase, Cynthia Folio, Jennifer Higdon, Katherine Hoover and Joan Tower. Nancy Toff offers a look at Emil Medicus and The Flutist magazine Friday at 1:30 pm. Peter Westbrook presents Apollo and Dionysius: The Lyre and the Flute, and Michelle Cheramy discuss the Performers Analytic Toolbox. Karen Moratz, author of Flute for Dummies, discusses her new book Friday at 12 pm. Moratz suggests bringing your flute to try out new ideas. The Graduate Research Competition awards two prizes for outstanding DMA/PhD dissertations. On Thursday at 10 am, the two winners discuss their work or stop by the NFA office to view these prize-winning dissertations when you have a free moment.

For Teachers and Performers
   A treasure of lectures/demonstrations and participatory sessions are scheduled throughout each day of the convention. The topics cover a variety of topics relating to teaching and performing. Jennifer Keeney presents an experiential class on practicing and performing with “recipes” to increase awareness, direction, focus and freedom. Bill Westney asks “How Can a Wrong Note Be Perfect.” Patricia George’s interactive masterclass focuses on “Power Practicing: Blink and Fast Forward.” Bring your flutes and a copy of the Sigfrid Karg-Elert 30 Caprices.
   Na’ama Lion presents ideas on the three main styles of ornamentation in the late Baroque. Bring your flute or traverso to participate. If you have never played the Baroque flute, but would like to learn, Barbara Hopkins, Boaz Berney, Linda Pereksta, Na’ama Lion, Nancy Schneeloch-Bingham and Wendy Rolfe will provide flutes and instruction in “Getting Started On the Baroque flute.”
   Francesca Arnone and Sandra Schwartz present “Resonant Tone Quality for Flutists and Vocalists.” You will leave with a sampling of vocal, breathing and light movement exercises to incorporate into your playing and teaching. Trevor Wye’s “Practicing Efficiently: Scales and Daily Exercises” or “Old Wine in New Bottles” is followed by Melissa Colgin Abeln’s ideas for the memory challenged (The Memory Map 3.0). Michelle Cheramy introduces flutists to recent discoveries in how the brain reacts to and processes musical sound. Debra Youngblood offers suggestions on how to make your studio an excuse-free zone in “Escaping the Excuse Trap.” There are several offerings each day to address health issues. Topics include Breathing (Lea Pearson), Breast Cancer and the Flute, Practical Injury Prevention and Management, Yoga classes, Resistance Training, and Ears to You (Stephen Mitchell, MD).

Sessions for Amateur Flutists
   Bradley Garner and Claudia Anderson will each teach an open masterclass for amateur flutists. Bring music (piano part too) and a flute and volunteer to play for these master teachers. Patricia Harper offers “Flute Tips for Amateurs” and Lisa Ann Fahlstrom addresses the topics for adults returning to music and flute playing after a hiatus.

World Flutes and Music
   In keeping with the convention program theme, of unity through diversity,  there are presentations on Baroque flutes, Simple System flutes, and Native American Flutes. Music from around the world will be performed by Adrianne Greenbaum (klezmer music), the fife and drums of Colonial Williamsburg, World Flutes of Boston with Wendy Rolfe, the Simon Bolivar ensemble, and John Wubbenhorst, (bansuri flute, playing North Indian Ragas). Also featured are flutists from Honduras, Argentina, and Portugal.

Flute Choirs
   Flute choir offerings include reading sessions of new music and daily concerts presented by flute choirs from across the globe in the Lobby, Showcase series and Pre-Gala Concerts. The High School, Collegiate, and Professional Flute Choirs are conducted by Rebecca Meador, Roger Martin, and Carlo Jans. For those preferring low flutes, check out “Down Deep with Low Flutes” led by Marion Garver Fredrickson and Paige Dashner Long. They provide practical approaches to artistic performance on low flutes in an ensemble. Italy’s premier flute ensemble, Joueurs de Flute, performs on Saturday, 1:45 pm in the Convention Center.  

Career Workshop
   The NFA Career and Artistic Development committee offers its 2nd annual mini-conference, Represent Yourself on Friday and Saturday mornings 8 am-10 am. Flutists Eva Amsler, Stephanie Jutt, Ellen Johnson and Laura Lentz lead six participants in You on the Page, You in Pictures, You in Your Work and You Learning from Others. This event is designed to help flutists bring their wildest project ideas to fruition.         

Wednesday Preconvention Events
Flute Orchestra Rehearsal
   Arrive early on Wednesday afternoon to participate in the NFA Queen City Flute Orchestra rehearsal at 4 pm. This 600-member flute orchestra will open the convention with a concert Thursday morning. Participation is open to all, so pick your favorite flute (piccolo, C flute, alto, bass, contra, sub-contra) and pre-register for the event. Shelly Binder and Amy Blumenthal will conduct. 

First Time Attendees
   Wednesday evening at 7 pm Sandy Saathoff hosts an orientation to offer tips on how to make the most of your first convention. On Thursday evening, all convention participants are invited to the Myrna Brown Society and Amateur Mixer. The Myrna Brown Society was established to carry on the spirit of friendliness that was begun in the early years of the NFA under the direction of its first Secretary/Treasurer, Myrna Brown. All are invited to meet for dinner before the evening concert. Individuals pay for their own meals. This dinner offers the opportunity for newcomers and amateur flutists to meet other flutists in a social setting.

   Volunteers are always wanted to assist in the many tasks that make the convention run smoothly. From stage setup, turning pages for pianists and ushering, there is always something to be done. If you are interested in volunteering, attend the instructional Volunteer Coordinator’s Meeting on Wednesday at 6 pm.

Youth Flute Day

Saturday, August 13, 8:30 am – 5 pm
Fee: $50 (includes T-shirt)

9:30 am: Warm-up with Rebecca Simonfalvi
10 am: Tour the exhibits with Rebecca Simonfalvi
10:45 am: Visit the High School Flute Choir Rehearsal
11:15 am: Pied Piper Flute Choir Rehearsal with Atarah ben-Tovim or
11:15 am: Walk Like This Flute Choir Rehearsal with Wendy Stern
12:30 pm: Flute Choirs Concert
1 pm: Lunch at the Exhibits
2 pm: Breakout Sessions
3:30 pm: Inspiring the Next Generation with Zachary Kellogg and Emma Resmini
4 pm: The Next Generation Masterclass with Paul Edmund-Davies

Where to Eat
Reservations Required

Friday: 11:30 am Flute Lovers Lunch with Paula Robison
Friday: 6 pm Lifetime Member and Donor’s Reception Honoring NFA Founder Mark Thomas’s 80th Birthday
Saturday: 8 am Pedagogy Breakfast with Brooks de Wetter-Smith
Saturday: 5:30 pm Lifetime Achievement and National Service Awards Reception and Gala Dinner honoring Katherine Borst Jones, Carol Wincenc, and Trevor Wye

Charlotte, North Carolina

Charlotte is nicknamed: the “Queen City” after German Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg who had become Queen consort of British King George III. The population is 731,424, and it is the 17th largest U.S. City. It is a financial center and is second in banking after New York City.

What to See:
•    The Green, a beautiful park across across the street from the Convention Center showcasing contemporary art.
•    NoDa (short for North Davidson) Charlotte’s Historic Art District
•    Charlotte Museum of History
•    Mint Museum of Art
•    Levine Museum of the New South
•    Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
•    Discovery Place (not just for kids)
•    Carowind Amusement Park
•    Billy Graham Library
•    U.S. National Whitewater Center
•    NASCAR Hall of Fame