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Your Talented Solstice Flute School Staff

Michael Graham Allen Suzanne Teng Joe Young Arvel Kalani Das Rona Yellowrobe Brent Haines

MICHAEL GRAHAM ALLEN – "Coyote Oldman"
Guest Instructor/Performer, Anasazi & Rim-Blown

Michael began building and selling Native American style flutes through the United States in the mid 1970's and was a very early and prolific force in the reintroduction, refinement and popularization of the Native American Flute.

In 1986 and 1987 M. G. Allen introduced the Native American flute to mainstream and alternative music markets throughout the US, Europe and Japan with the groundbreaking recordings: Tear of the Moon and Night Forest. Coyote Oldman recordings are used in television and radio programs around the world and in the late 80's gave millions of people their first encounter with this beautiful and little known instrument. By the mid 1990's Coyote Oldman recordings had sold well over half a million copies and in 1995 introduced the Native American flute to the young Internet with the first Native American flute web site:www.CoyoteOldman.com.

Mr. Allen learned to make and play flutes without a teacher, turning instead to the actual artifacts in museums and collections around the country. M. G. Allen met flute maker and author Dr. Richard Payne in 1981 and developed a deep friendship and collaboration in flute building and research which spanned 23 years until Dr. Payne's death in 2004. M.G. Allen's perhaps most important project is the reintroduction of the ancient Anasazi flute: bringing back to life this beautiful and mysterious North American flute that has been silent for 700 years. This unique and powerful instrument dominates Mr. Allen's new CD: Rainbird (Return of the Anasazi flute). He is working on two new recordings, a film score and a collaboration with musician Peter Phippen. http://www.coyoteoldman.com

 

SUZANNE TENG
Instructor/Performer, Intermediate, Advanced & Masters Students

Called a "brilliant flutist" by the Los Angeles Times, Suzanne is the winner of the Los Angeles Music Awards, International Acoustic Music Awards and two-time winner of the Independent Music Awards (Best New Age Artist).

Suzanne plays an array of flutes from the around the world and performs internationally with her husband and music partner Gilbert Levy and their world music band MYSTIC JOURNEY. As a recording artist, she can be heard on numerous feature film and television soundtracks and commercials. She has performed on the SURVIVOR (live) shows that were viewed by over 70 million people and has had her music featured on America’s Got Talent.

Suzanne started playing the flute at 10 and was teaching by 14. She has taught at universities, conservatories, conventions and camps across the country. A known and respected educator, she has been invited to serve on the panel for Music Education for the National Endowment for the Arts for the past three years. Suzanne received her Masters degree in Music Performance from Boston University and completed the coursework for the Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology at UCLA. She is an endorsed artist for YAMAHA.

 

JOE YOUNG
Instructor/Performer, Intermediate, Advanced & Masters Students

Joe composed his first song at age eleven, continued with classical training on saxophone through college, and fell in love with the Native American style flute when he composed his first flute song before he even owned the instrument.  As a versatile and gifted multi-instrumentalist, Joe combines the ancient with the contemporary to create music which reaches beyond the boundaries typically expected in the new age and world music genres.  He embraces the belief that art should have no restrictions, and is known for playing a wide variety of ethnic flutes from around the world (Native American style flutes, the Pueblo/Anasazi flute, Irish pennywhistle, Chinese xiao, the modern mathematical Phi flute, South and Central American clay drone flute and others), combined with traditional and modern instruments from many countries.

Joe shares his expertise through private lessons and group instruction at flute schools throughout the Country.  With subjects ranging from beginning to advanced flute, to embellishment, improvisation, musical communication, stage craft, showmanship and inspiration, students of all abilities find Joe to be a patient, gracious, motivating and knowledgeable teacher.

In addition to being a talented composer, dynamic improvisational musician, lifelong performer and favored instructor, Joe is also a professional sound engineer and an accomplished recording artist with four self-produced CDs to his credit.  He is also a 2nd degree black belt in Chinese Shao-Lin Kung Fu and Tai Chi.  Having spent 14 years studying the martial arts discipline, he carries many of the philosophies of grounding, breathing, inner balance and training into his musical performances and teachings.

Joe is a lifelong performer and gifted improvisational musician who happens to write and play some of the most innovative Native American flute music going. He exhibits a particular knack for unexpected melodies and dynamic arrangements that take his music far above and beyond the typical flute recording.  Classically trained on saxophone since the age of 12, Joe composed his first song at age 11 and fell in love with the Native American flute some ten years later when he wrote his first flute song, Shaman’s Dream, before he even had a flute.  Young's panache suggests a theatrical bent, as though many of his songs might have walked off the soundtrack of a movie.  As an accomplished composer, recording artist, instructor of Native American and world flutes, and professional sound engineer, Joe has an incredibly broad musical perspective.  Joe’s most recent CD, “Ethereum,” is the winner of 2017 Global Music Awards.

Joe brings to us his creative way of embracing the sounds and beauty of the Native American flute, his keen sense of rhythm and percussion, and his expertise in stagecraft and sound.  He has a passion for inspiring creativity in his students by expanding their musical boundaries and building confidence through encouraging experimentation.  www.josephlyoung.com

 

ARVEL BIRD
Instructor/Performer, Intermediate, Advanced & Masters Students

Arvel Bird, Southern Paiute, is a classically-trained violinist and multi-award winning recording artist in a variety of styles using the violin and Native American flute. Arvel owned and operated his own master recording studio in Nashville, TN for 13 years while also touring with some of country music's legends including Glen Campbell, Loretta Lynn, Ray Price and others. Now in his 11th year of full-time touring,

Arvel has just released his 23rd CD. He is the recipient of 4 Nammys (Native American Music Awards) and was recently named as one of “Cowboys and Indians” magazine favorite performers, along with Buffy St. Marie & R. Carlos Nakai.

 

KALANI DAS
Instructor/Performer, Beginner Students

Kalani Das is an internationally recognized musician, educator, and music therapist. He has performed with artists such as Yanni, Suzanne Ciani, Kenny Loggins, Barry Manilow, and others. The author of over ten books, including Together in Rhythm and The Way of Music, Kalani presents workshops for educators across the US and internationally. He has published numerous educational videos and is the creator of the Developmental Community Music (DCM) approach to facilitation. Kalani is the author of "The Healing Flute Program," a self-study guide to healing through music. He is the director of Golden State Music Therapy, serving people with disabilities and challenges in the Los Angeles area. Find out more at kalanimusic.com and connect with Kalani on most social media @kalanimusic.

 

RONA YELLOWROBE
Instructor/Performer, Novice Students

2014, 2015 & 2016  Native American Music Awards (NAMA) Flutist of the Year, Rona Yellow Robe was born and raised in Havre, Montana and is an enrolled member of the Chippewa Cree Tribe of Rocky Boy, Montana.
 
Rona is known for her powerful vocal ability, Native American flute style, and heart-filled presence. She picked up her first flute in 2002 and has been on a Musical and Spiritual journey ever since. It is by playing the Native American flute, which she refers to as her "other voice,” that she has become comfortable sharing with all audiences many aspects of her life that are personal and meaningful to her.

Rona Yellow Robe and Bruce Witham have been creating music together since May, 2008. They have recorded three albums, “Voice of the Trees” (2009), “The Gathering” (2012) and, most recently a Christmas album entitled “Lighting Our Way” (2013). In 2010, Rona and Bruce received the Native American Music Awards nomination as Songwriters of the Year for their song, “Voice of the Trees.”  Also, Rona and Bruce's album, "The Gathering" was Nominated for Record of the Year by the 2014 NAMA. 

www.ronayellowrobe.net

 

BRENT HAINES
Flutemaker, Master Flute Creation Class

In 1993, while at the University of Utah studying Chemical Engineering, Brent made his first flute. Though that flute was rough and not tuned, Brent got bit by the Native Flute Bug! In 2002 another friend introduced Brent to a finely made native flute. The embers that had been warm for the last decade, burst into flames of enthusiasm and Brent began making flutes in earnest. One year later he launched into Woodsounds Flutes as a full time endeavor.

For nearly a decade and a half, the making of Native Flutes has provided a livelihood for Brent and his young family and, in this time, Brent has become recognized as one of the leading creators of Native American Flutes.

Brent's shop produces of some of the finest playing and most beautiful flutes in the world, flutes favored by numerous recording artists and more importantly numerous Livingroom Artists. Brent loves turning peoples’ dreams into reality. There is simply nothing better than seeing the eyes of a person light up as they realize that they truly can play this musical instrument and sound wonderful!

Over the years, Brent has helped hundreds of people begin playing the flute and have seen them create magical experiences.

“Brent Haines is not only one of my flute makers, but he's a friend who has encouraged, mentored, and lifted me in the world of the flute. I always feel confident when I play his flutes on stage because they have always played to my intentions, and as a musical artist that means the world to me.” Rona Yellowrobe