Solstice Flute Fest School LogoSolstice Flute Fest School


Suzanne Teng Arvel Joe Young Kalani Das Rona Yellowrobe

SUZANNE TENG “Listening and Duet Play” in Gypsy Mode

We all know how important listening is to having a good conversation.  It’s the same with music.  in this class, we’ll tune up our listening skills and celebrate the joy of playing with others.  Working in the Gypsy Mode, we’ll play duets with two flutes and duets with flutes and drums.  You’ll learn to play “Maqsum,” probably the most recognizable of all the Arabic rhythms, and a really fun one to play along with.  Bring a small hand drum or tambourine if you have one! LOVE IT!


ARVEL BIRD “Critique Me!” Playing with Confidence in Front of Others” in Mode 4

From selected Modal scales and patterns you will open up to new songs and a whole new world of improvisation over common chord changes.

  • Beginners Class - build on their flute playing by introducing them to the NAF Mode 4 Pentatonic scale.  In addition to learning the Mode 4 Pen scale you get the chance to improvise in class with chord changes that fit with that scale.
  • Intermediate Class - will gain fluency on the Mode 4 Pen + the flute’s relative major scale and learn to play “Amazing Grace” from the major scale position and jam on chord changes for the Mode 4 Pen In you flute key.
  • Advanced Class - will add to that the Mode 4 Dorian scale or “extended note scale” that begins with the Mode 4 Pen.  Players in this group and the master’s class will want to bring flutes of Em, F#m, Gm OR Am flutes that have the “extended upper range” available to play on them.  Contact Nancy or myself for flute makers who make these kinds of flutes.  In addition to “Amazing Grace” the advanced group will also be learning to play “Scarborough Fair” (Dorian mode) and jamming on Dorian Mode chord changes.
  • Masters Class -  It will be assumed that you are already familiar and using the Mode 4 Pen scale and the relative major scale so we will be focusing on the Mode 4 Dorian (extended Mode 4 Pen) and the Mode 6 Aeolian scale. Extended upper range flutes are required for this class.  You will also be learning to play “Greensleeves” (Aeolian mode) in addition to the other songs mentioned.  Tablature and music will be provided and you will have an opportunity to jam over chord changes for the Mode 6 Aeolian scale.  It’s not hard and it’s fun to hear something new coming out of your NAF rather than just the Pentatonic scale.

JOE YOUNGModey Blues” in Blues Mode

Beat the stagnation blues and take your flute playing to next level! Playing in Blues Mode, we’ll explore finding your own voice and breaking with perceived tradition to expand your creativity. When you become thoroughly comfortable alternating the Blues scale with other scales, you’ll be capable of building more musical interest and inspiration from practice to performance, and you’ll keep your music fresh and engaging. One simple bluesy riff can be transformed in numerous different ways, sounding extraordinarily different each time, even completely changing the “feel” or emotion of a song. We’ll play with these using multiple variations of embellishments, ornamentation and flourishes, including experimenting with bending timing. Live drumming and some fun backing tracks will provide support behind your fluting explorations. Beginners, please bring your favorite flute. Intermediate, Advanced and Masters, please bring G and/or A flutes as we’ll be playing together a lot.


KALANI DAS “I’ve Got the Rhythm in ME!” in Pentatonic Mode

Rhythm is the key! Students will experience a wide variety of fundamental and exotic rhythms from around the world. We'll explore universal grooves and unlock the mysteries of world music as we elevate our playing and connect with music and each other in ways that are both challenging and life changing. We'll explore rhythmic fingering, tonguing, and breath techniques through styles such as Samba, Salsa, West African, Jazz, and more. An emphasis on trying something new will help students benefit from entering into a flow state during our time together. These classes are about challenging yourself to grow, wherever you are in your flute journey.


RONA YELLOWROBE “Jamming The Basics” in The Basic Scale

The Beginner Class of the Native American flute is about connecting your Spirit to the Spirit of the flute.

I enjoy teaching the Beginner course because I remember the innocence of when I first began to play. I remember how comfortable I felt in my introduction to playing this lovely instrument; the joy of simply picking up my flute to see what song I was going to play in that moment.

In your course, I begin with teaching positioning of your fingers on the flute, the basic scale, introduction to embellishments, introduction to tempo, playing your feelings, listening and connecting to nature in your song, and also learning to play duets.

Be prepared to be in active participation from the start. However, please know, my intention and success has been in creating a gentle, safe and enjoyable atmosphere where my students feel confident and feel good about where they are with their instrument.

We, together, will lay the foundation of the fundamental teachings so that at the end of your course, you will have established a desire to look in directions of - Where else can I go with this beautiful instrument?

I am looking forward to meeting you, and to being an essential part of your beginning to play Your Song, Your Spirit to our world, whether it takes you on a public stage, or serving your community such as hospice and/or your church, or in the privacy of your own home.


NOTE:   Rona will be returning as our 5th teacher, providing we have 50 students registered for the Solstice Flute School.  In the event that we don’t have 50 students, Brent Haines will teach the Novice Class.