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This page is where you'll find news related to the San Diego Flute Guild and its members. You can always get the current newsletter here or you can scroll down to pick the previous one that you’d like to read. News and events from our membership is also included here. If you have an item to add to our newsletter, email us

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Members of the San Diego Flute Guild are invited to submit articles and news for our website.  Articles can be anything related to flute and music making.  We do ask that they are not promotional in nature.   Thank you!

  • Thursday, May 01, 2014 9:23 PM | Anonymous

    In Memory of
    August 9, 1919 – April 16, 2014

    We are sad to hear of the passing of one of our members, Winona Grant, and would like to extend our sympathies to the Grant Family. The family has requested that donations in her memory be made to the newly established, The Winona Grant Memorial Scholarship Fund. Winona was a member of SDFG for many, many years until the day she passed. She truly loved the flute.

    If you would like to attend the memorial, it will be held on:
    May 3, 11:30 am
    Community Congregational Church
    276 F Street
    Chula Vista

    “Winona was a strong supporter of all things flute especially the SDFG.  Her flute studio participated in events like the Holiday Choir Concert, Flute Camp and many more. One summer I remember seeing her running from room to room (with her cane) at an NFA convention.”

    “I knew Winona – sweet lady and she had such a passion for the flute & her students.”

    “The Flute Guild was near and dear to Mom’s heart.”

    Here are some photos of Winona and other SDFG Members from 1986:

    The San Diego Flute Guild would like to thank the family and Winona for this generous contribution.

  • Sunday, September 08, 2013 9:25 PM | Anonymous

    Recently, a box of Flute Choir and Ensemble Flute music was found in storage.  This music dates back to the original Flute Guild from the 80’s and has been cataloged and is available to borrow.  This collection includes pieces from the Bachs, Brings, Gluck, Handel, Harmon, Mancini, Mozart, Satie, Tchaikoschy, Telemann and many more.  Please click here to see the list of the music that is available.  If you’re interested in borrowing it, arrangements can be made by emailing the Guild at sandiegofluteguild@gmail.com.  This music is only available to members of the Guild.  The list contains:

    Arnold, Malcolm (flute and viola duet)
    Bach, Jan Eisteddfod variations and Penillion on a Welsh Harptune (flute, viola, and harp)
    Bach, J.A. Air from the Suite in D (flute choir)
    Bach, J.S. Aria from Cantata BVW 25 (flute choir)
    Bach, J.S. Badinage (flute quartet)
    Bach, J.S. Canon, Reversible Duet (flute duets)
    Bach, W. F. Six Duets for Two Flutes
    Berlinski, Herman Adagietto (flute andn organ)
    Bornschein, Franz The French Clock (flute quartet)
    Big Band Combos: Flute duets / solos
    Boismortier, J. Three Concertos for Five Flutes
    Boyce Symphony No. 1 (flute choir)
    Brahams, J. How Lovely is Thy Dwelling Place (flute quartet and piano (2)
    Brings, Allen Three Lais (solo flute)
    Clementi, M. Sonata (flute quartet)
    Collection Panorama Flute and piano
    Cunningham, Michael Pastel Design, Op. 12 (flute choir)
    De Vries, Klaas 5 part Fantasy (flute ensemble)
    Douglas, Paul Foyveblas (wind quintet)
    Faure, Gabriel Cantique de jean Racine (flute choir, piano)
    Frackenpohl, Authur Flute Rag (flute trio and piano, opt. rhythm)
    Gluck, C. W. Minuet and Dance of the Blessed Spirits (flute choir)
    Grey, Geoffrey Contretemps (wind quintet)
    Grundman, Clare Flutation (flute trio or flute choir)
    Faure, Gabriel Pavanne (flute choir and piano)
    Haines, Edmond Eclogue (flute, 2 violins, and cello)
    Handel, Georg F. Allegro Maestoso from water music suite (flute choir)
    Handel, G. F. Sarabanda (flute choir)
    Harmon, John 4 Songs (flute choir)
    Herman, Ralph Flute Willow (flute duet, trio or quartet)
    Hester, Gwen The4 Albatross (flute and piano)
    Hirose, Ryohei Blue Train (flute choir)
    Hoover, Katherine Medieval Suite (flute and piano) (2)
    Irish Air The Galway Piper (flute quartet)
    Kiefer, Bruno Notas Soltas (solo flute)
    Kuhlau, Friedrich Duet One Opus 102, 1
    Kverno, Trond Triptychon (descant recorder solo)
    Leante, F. C. Ballata II (solo flute)
    Lewis, Robert Hall Divertimento (six instruments)
    Lieberson, Peter Flute Variations (solo flute)
    Lombardo, Ricky Reflections (flute choir)
    Mancini Village Inn (flute choir)
    Mancini Shades of Sennett (flute choir)
    Maw, Nicholas Night Thoughts (solo flute)
    McGinty, Anne Ambage (flute quartet)
    Mendelssohn, F. Andante from Italian Symphony 2nd mvmt. (flute choir)
    Monteverdi Canons, Plain and Fancy (flute duets)
    Moore, Carman Museum Piece (flute, cello and tape)
    Mozart, W. A. Serenade-Eine (Kleine Nachtmusic (choir)
    Mozart, W. A. The Magic Flute Overture (flute choir)
    Mozart, W. A. Quartet in F Minor
    Offenbach, J. Cancan (flute trio)
    Pollet, Lanny Three Transcriptions (woodwind trio)
    Prodigo, Sergio Sonata XIV (solo flute)
    Restorff, henry The Forest Warbler (flute/picc. And piano)
    Rimsky-Korsakoff, N. Flight of the Bumble Bee (flute quartet)
    Rose, David Holiday for Flutes (duet and piano)
    Rubin, Andrew Two Elegies (flute and piano)
    Satie, Erik Three Gnossiennes (flute choir)
    Satie, Erik Three Gynmopedies (flute choir)
    Schade, William 20 Easy and Progressive Duets
    Shapey, Ralph O Jerusalem (soprano and flute)
    Sherman, Norman Quintessant (woodwind quintet)
    Smetana, Friedrich Dance of the Comedians (flute choir)
    Swinstead, Felix Pastorale (flute/oboe and piano)
    Tchaikovshy, P. I. Andante Cantable (flute choir)
    Telemann, George P. Six Canonic Sonatas (duet)
    Trois for fun Sailor’s Hornpipe, American Patrol
    Webb, Robert K. Scarborough Fair (flute choir)
    Wouters, Adolphe Adagio and Scherzo (flute quartet)
    Young, Douglas Trajet (alto flute solo)
      Londonderry Air (flute choir)
    Holcombe, Bill A Christmas Jazz Suite (flute choir)
    Knudsen, Peder I am so Glad each Christmas Eve (flute choir)
    Lombardo, Ricky God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman (5 flutes)
    Rice-Young, Amy The First Noel (flute choir)
    Rice-Young, Amy Good King Wenceslas (flute choir)
    Traditional O Christmas Tree (flute trio)

  • Wednesday, February 20, 2013 9:34 PM | Anonymous

    A Conductor’s View on Student Auditions with Guest Lecture Artist, Maestra Steinberg 

    Written and compiled by Dr. September Payne

    SDYS Conductor Ella Steinberg

    “-this [Coastal Flutes Mock Audition Seminar] is a valuable outreach

    opportunity for our talented San Diego flute students, from which we all benefit.”

    It was a mid summer’s afternoon in Carmel Valley, California as eleven flute students tested their audition preparedness and competitive performance skills during San Diego Coastal Flute’s, “Two-Day Mock Audition Seminar”, lead by professional flutist/evaluators, September Payne, D.M.A., Joyce Hayutin, B.A. and Tiffany Covell, B.A..

    While taking a break from class projects and rehearsals, the students listened to guest artist, Maestra Ella Steinberg, conductor of the San Diego Youth Symphony’s (SDYS) Wind Symphony, Concert Winds and Debut Winds, share what conductors look for in auditions and what she believes is the winning formula for a successful audition. “Ella speaks eloquently and poignantly; her soft, even toned voice, commands that you listen or you will miss pearls of wisdom-the perfect deportment for a conductor and an educator,” remarked Dr. Payne.

    Ella opened her talk with a simple, yet direct message to the students, saying that at SDYS the conductors and adjudicators hear many good players with lots of potential, however, the majority of those who don’t get the chair or ensemble that they want, make errors that are easily correctable. While it’s evident that everyone strives to play with clean technique, their best tone and to play musically in the auditions, some come up short in one or more of the categories listed below. Ella went on to point out that most deficiencies are usually of a fundamental nature. In her message to the students, she stressed the following important points that most often elude young auditioners/

    Know the audition requirements. Not clear? Ask your teacher, look on line at the organization’s home page, and email the contact person or phone.

    Be prepared in every way with scales, different articulations, appropriate repertoire, sight reading, etc. Be ready to do anything asked of you without any excuse or rebuttal.

    Be on time-that means early! Allow time to find parking. Allow for inclement weather.

    Be organized-bring what you need: water, banana, protein bar, sweater, headphones, gloves, Kleenex? YOUR MUSIC & FLLUTE! Bring a second (real) copy for the judges. No photocopies.

    Warm up well at home. You may arrive and can’t warm up, or are late. When in the warm up room, treat it as your getting settled time. Allow no more than 20 minutes in the warm up room so you don’t have to listen to everyone else and get more nervous. Talk to your teacher about finding ways to stay relaxed in those last minutes. Have a pre-audition routine that you always follow. The familiarity of it will calm you.

    Nerves-practice playing nervous (the negative side) and excited (the positive side). Did you know the brain handles it the same?! Run up a flight of stairs and immediately practice playing your audition at home. Play many times for others and video record yourself before you perform. Breathe, Breathe, and Breathe! Practice deep breathing techniques, rhythmic breathing, meditation, yoga, swim, or do a sport.

    Attire-your choice of clothes show how professional and respectful you are to your profession and to those who have more experience (the judges) than you. You are also a reflection and representative of your teacher’s studio. Be proud to be part of that studio. Make your teacher proud of you, not only with behind the scenes hard work, practice and courage to audition, but with your dress. No belly buttons showing, flip-flops, shorts, jeans, or gum chewing etc.

    Stage Deportment and Posture-an engaged performer intrigues us, not only with their interpretation but their stage presence. The musical message is often enhanced by the visual, but is not always as germane in classical music as it is in other forms of musical entertainment. Who could imagine Madonna or MTV without the visual? For Classical music, your posture shouldn’t detract from the musical message or the ability to technically execute it. How do you “Strike a Pose?”

    Rhythm and Rests-besides the correct notes and playing musically, you must play rhythmically. While this may sound obvious, it’s a criterion that sometimes escapes even advanced players. Also, observe and count out all rests under a bar length long. They are not less important in the audition than notes.

    Durations-hold dotted notes, ties and long notes their full value. The committee will be counting along with you. Keep your brain turned on during these! A good example of this is Mozart’s Flute _oncerto in D Major, K 314, in which the high D, in the opening passage, must be held for four measures. Although there are many ways this note can be played, with regard to dynamics, vibrato, etc., don’t zone out. Concentrate and don’t forget to count!

    Intonation-you have to learn to play all notes in tune and especially C#! The committee often consists of other instrumentalists who won’t be and shouldn’t be aware of our instrument’s pitch problems. This problem seems universal amongst flute players. Just because there are intrinsic flaws in the physical, acoustic property of the flute, or because it requires more attention, doesn’t mean you should over look it. It is still your responsibility to find where C# is. One day you will have to play Debussy’s Afternoon of a Faun, which starts on a C# and Daphnis and Chloé, Suite No. 2, which is loaded with them.

    Scales and More Scales! Why we ask them-well executed scales show disciplined practice. It says to us that you are willing to sit there day, week, year after year until you get fluency and speed in them. As youth orchestra judges, we see and remark on the improvements you make each year you re-audition. As repetition creates muscle memory, transcend the technical aspects of your instrument and make music! Solid scale execution allows us conductors to sleep at night, knowing that in rehearsals we won’t have to stop so much and knowing we can depend on you in the concert. At SDYS, we when ask for minors scales, play them up to the octave or the 9th, which ever makes you more comfortable. Advanced students must play two octaves and three octaves where possible. Be ready to play the key of B Major, three octaves!

    Audition Repertoire-pick a piece you like! Leave us (the judges) with everything about the music. If we have to choose between two technically proficient, top level students for an ensemble, chair placement or concerto winner, it will be the person who plays with heart, (musicality). Show us heart. Provided you are technically proficient, the musical connection wins!

    Repertoire level-your piece should reflect and show off your present level on your instrument. Too easy doesn’t get you anywhere. Too hard is not smart. Many students want to play pieces that are not only technically too hard for them but musically to profound for their current understanding and present development. Being eager to take on challenges is good however; your teacher has the last word on appropriate repertoire choices-for good reason. Their experience has taken them from where you are now to where they are! While preparing a piece for an audition, it’s a good idea to choose a back up piece as well, in case your first choice piece is not clean and ready by the time of the audition.

    Interpretations-can’t be too bizarre. While creativity and musicality are expected, be careful not to infuse every note with your own musical personality. Owning the music by letting some of your musical instincts come through at important points is a sign of a musically mature player. If over done, however the music will sound distorted.

    Tempos-choose your tempos in a fairly constrained range. Your tempos should be representative of several tempos that might be played with a professional orchestra. There are tempos in famous pieces that are ingrained in conductors and other members of the orchestras mind. To start these tempos faster or slower than the norm, will have a negative impact on the committee. It is usually obvious which players know the score and/or have already played the piece in concert. If you haven’t had the chance to perform your auditor repertoire, at least listen to several recordings and follow the score.

    Sight-reading must be fluent. Take only 20 seconds to assess the excerpt. We ask sight-reading to see your musical independence. It shows your ability to think tempo, keep it under pressure and read new music at short notice. _y tapping your toe in your shoe you get a better feel for the beat, it’s your body’s metronome, and it gives yourself a pulse-a reference for rhythm! And, yes, we look for musical playing, even insight reading. We also know you are not fluent in your key signatures if you trip up on the key signature while sight-reading! We love to ask five sharps!

    Practice-technical practice gets you ready to play any repertoire. If you practice well, you will play well. The purpose of practice is not solely to beat someone else but to be able to stand out amongst many, by playing your best and giving your focus to expressive, musical playing. The little things matter and we notice them!

    Peaking, Creating a Time Line-start preparing early. Don’t wait until the last minute. !t the SD_F Mock Audition camp, teachers September, Joyce and Tiffany helped students create a preparation time line outline that students can use for this coming year’s competitions. There are not enough opportunities like this camp offering, that teach what is expected in auditions and give young musicians the chance to practice auditioning in semi-formal settings. Being be evaluated offers valuable preparation help for when it really counts.

    A Word About Competition-compete against yourself and focus on what it takes to bring the music on the page to life and touch audience’s hearts with your own unique voice. You will not achieve that if you are busy worrying about what levels others are at and trying to out-best them. The musical connection wins!

    Goals-have a life plan-where do I want to be in 5, 10, 20 years? Create short, long term goals and have high standards. Focus on your own development. Avail yourself to local master classes and competitions with your teacher’s guidance. Listen to great recorded and live artists. It’s not only about winning, because no one can win every time but it is about succeeding. If you’ve practiced intelligently, keeping the music in mind, it will show. Winning at school level competitions and winning a job in music in the real world have very different standards, but similar preparation. You have to prepare as though your practice is for the real thing.

    A Proven Successful, Winning Formula for the long haul: most current professionals in the field have had four levels of teachers spanning their formative years to their first professional job. Teachers,

    parents and students need to recognize when it’s time to move to the next level for a student’s development.

    1. Your first nurturing teacher when you begin at a young age. Middle, grade school.

    2. Another nurturing teacher but with a strong hand. Junior high.

    3. ! mentor that strictly says you must do/and call you on it. High School.

    4. A master, world famous level teacher-late high school, college, or for professional auditions.

    NOW, FOR THE NEVERS/in the audition room NEVER play from a photo copy.

    NEVER say out loud to the judges that you are nervous. We know you are.

    NEVER say “I don’t like auditions”. Nobody really likes them but think about why are you here.

    NEVER apologize for anything-just play as if you meant that mistake. Apologizing comes across as an excuse. “_ut I played it perfectly at home!” Although we are human and not machines, very few mistakes just happen coincidentally. They happen more often if you’re not prepared.

    NEVER show too much emotion. Anger and disappointment show you think you are better than you are. For whatever reason and under pressure you were not able to perform as well.

    Never let a single moment or single criticism define you! But be humble and accept where you are in your development. Let the experience fuel your next practice day! Enjoy life’s process.

    SO, recapping the last 4 points, NEVER speak in an audition. This is a hard one for young players. Learn to just say thank you after your audition and exit the room. We know how difficult it is and we will regard you as grace under pressure! Go home and analyze with your teacher why you didn’t do as well as you might have. Vow to do better next time!

    NEVER challenge your placement. Panel judges place you based on how you performed that day. After all it is a competition, even if it’s competing against your own standards. We generally believe the results are pretty close to where they would be, even if everyone played their best. We are also very experienced at placing the student where they need to be for their best development and we recognize potential. Trust us.

    NEVER lose ensemble experience by dropping out because you didn’t get the chair you wanted. This shows arrogance and will deter you from an open mind and future learning. It’s better to play than not to play. Taking any ensemble over none will still get you some experience. It’s better to take 30th chair over no chair. If you’re on the back of the bus, you’re still on the bus, right?

    NEVER just try to get by: flutists are the most competitive instrumentalist on the planet because there are so many of you! Because you live in a constant competitive environment, you practice more, and your section, more often than not, is the highest level of the entire orchestra. To stand out amongst other flutists you have to be extraordinary. That’s why the level of flute playing is ever increasing.

    Winning-remember, play beyond the notes. Play with heart! Leave us with everything about the music. In the end, the musical connection wins!

  • Wednesday, February 20, 2013 9:27 PM | Anonymous

    Strive To Become An Excellent Student

    by Cindy Anne Broz

    Being an excellent student is as important as having an excellent teacher.

    An excellent student can learn from any qualified teacher. A problem student will have difficulty learning from even the best of teachers. Many students consider being prepared for their lessons equivalent to being an excellent student.

    Being prepared for lessons represents only a small (albeit essential) characteristic of the excellent student. Becoming an excellent student takes commitment and work, but the results are well worth the effort.

    Suggestions for becoming an excellent student:

    Be a good listener. Listening does not merely involve hearing and nodding. Listening means striving to understand what is being communicated to you and then applying it. This process takes time, as communications can be abstract in nature and require thoughtful consideration before a full understanding can occur. You must then apply your theoretical understanding to physical and practical functions.

    Do what is asked of you. Your teacher knows your strengths and challenges and assigns material to assist you in maximizing your strengths and overcoming your challenges. This material may not be what the you want to play, but it is what you need to play in order to improve. This suggestion goes hand-in-hand with suggestion #3 Trust your teacher.

    Trust your teacher. Few people hear you play as much as your teacher. When your teacher makes an assessment and recommendation, it is based on knowledge, understanding, and years of experience. Trust your teacher’s assessment, even if you think that you know more than he/she does (by the way, you don’t). If you do not trust your teacher, you are better off studying with someone else because you cannot learn from someone that you do not trust. This is not to say that your teacher does not have something to offer you; but without basic trust, you become un-teachable.

    Be respectful of your teacher. Being respectful is more than just behaving properly in the lesson setting. Being respectful is acting as a representative of your teacher and your studio whenever you are engaged in flute-related activities: competitions and festivals, rehearsals, performances, etc.

    Listen to other flute students and flute players as often as you possibly can. This is vitally important! Students who only hear themselves are at a great disadvantage, not only because they have a limited view of their own playing, but also because they do not learn to appreciate and value the playing of others. Many students avoid hearing other fine student players because they feel threatened. Instead, they should be seeking out this opportunity as an avenue to expand their own growth and development. Remember that being a good flute player involves more than just “playing the flute well ”. The development of positive character traits is essential to the making of a successful musician. The plethora of outstanding players allows many choices for musical directors, flute professors, contractors, concert organizers, etc.

    The players who will ultimately be the most successful will have learned to be gracious, socially appropriate, respectful, and humble. A teacher with integrity will teach these qualities to his/her students just as he/she will teach Taffanel et Gaubert, Andersen Etudes, solo and orchestral literature, etc. Intelligent students will recognize the importance of these lessons.

    Be more concerned about learning than impressing others. An obsession with impressing others quickly becomes one of the greatest barriers to learning. For these students, playing becomes very ego-based because of underlying insecurity. The student views constructive assessment as negative criticism, and having challenges is viewed as failure. Yet, it is the teacher’s job to assess both a student’s strengths and challenges, and to offer advice and opportunity for the student to improve. Unfortunately, this type of student often becomes distrustful of the teacher when the teacher attempts to challenge the student’s perceived reality. This breakdown in trust begins a vicious cycle. “Forum Shopping” (see #8) can be part of this cycle.

    Avoid “Forum Shopping”. “Forum Shopping” is different from auditioning teachers in that it involves jumping from teacher to teacher searching for someone who will tell the the student what he/she wants to hear, rather than what he/she needs to hear about his/her playing. Students can waste a great deal of valuable time and money with this process, but more importantly they can develop a false reality regarding their abilities, a significant barrier to learning. Student who are “forum shoppers” are generally not good listeners. 

    Allow yourself to be humble and vulnerable. The greatest learning occurs in the presence of humility and vulnerability. When a student recognizes that he/she has a great deal to learn and places his/her trust and vulnerability in the hands of a good teacher, there is no end to the amount of learning which can occur. Being a good listener (suggestion #1) is a function of humility and vulnerability.

    Don’t burn bridges. Always remember that the flute community is a small one (and getting smaller everyday because of the internet). Flute teachers, accompanists, and other players communicate on a regular basis. Changing teachers is a normal process, but you should make every effort to leave on good terms and maintain a positive relationship with your former teachers. Be gracious and professional. You can assume that anything you say about a former teacher, accompanist, or another player will be heard by him/her at some point. What you say about another person defines you more than it does the other person. An ungracious or difficult student will get a reputation within the teaching community which can follow them for years to come. This can lead to doors and minds being closed to that student regardless of his/her playing ability (ironically, the student may not even be aware of the missed opportunities). Conversely, an excellent student will get a positive reputation which can lead to an abundance of opportunities. Teachers will champion these students and work hard on their behalf to involve them in a multitude of enrichment activities. Never underestimate the power of positive connections. Always be a student of the instrument. As long as you are a willing student, you will continue to grow as a player. This applies to every age and level of player. If you think that you have nothing left to learn, then you are correct.

    Excellent students are not just born, they develop; just as people develop into quality human beings. This process does not occur without willingness and assistance from the parents. Excellent students usually have excellent parents who understand the importance of the above characteristics, instill these ideals in their children, and support the teacher’s attempts to foster the student’s development in this regard.

    If you want to become a better flute player, strive to become an excellent student. You will become a better flute player, and perhaps more importantly, you will become a better person!

    Cindy Anne Broz is a freelance flutist and flute teacher residing in Southern California. She is past President of The San Diego Flute Guild.

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