Last weekend a few of the members of Piping Hot Flutes! (Karina, Rachael and I) took a trek down to Boston to participate in the Met Flute Festival Orchestra at New England Conservatory. This is an event that happens once a year and involves advanced flutists from all over the country. The concert took place at the historic Jordan Hall.
We met some fun and fascinating people too, including the director of the flute orchestra, Paige Dasher Long, who was a pleasure to work with. She chose a great program of music this year with a variety of musical styles. "Life with a musical twist" was the theme.
The three of us were involved with the advanced select ensemble which played Smetana's Moldau. It was such a great piece and really well arranged. Before we arrived, we weren't sure how such a grand work was going to translate through a flute orchestra. With the original composition being so dark, with heavy brass and deep voicings, we didn't know what to expect. The contrabass flute section had us covered though. The performance turned out to be very rich.
Speaking of contrabass flutes: another interesting person we had the pleasure of meeting was contrabass player, Jon Cohen. He composed one of the pieces that the flute orchestra played (Flute 66), and will be performing some of his other works with various ensembles at the National Flute convention this year. Jon was generous enough to let us play a few notes on his contrabass flute. None of us have ever tried one before so it was a real treat. They stand about 7 feet tall, but the biggest flute there was Paige's double contrabass flute. This flute is one of only 4 in the world, and its lowest note corresponds with the lowest key on a piano. It's so large that it has a platform with wheels to roll it around. The whole room resonated when she played. It was fantastic!
Along with us were 5 advanced students from Rachael's teaching studio.They seemed to have a great time, too. We were all very fortunate to be able to play in such a unique ensemble with such highly skilled players. We all had a blast on our field trip to New England Conservatory and hope to have many more musical adventures in the future. Stay tuned!