Flautists flocked to Washburn for ‘April Flutes Day’ Saturday

Leia Karimul Bashar

Beware of April Flutes Day.

Open to all youth flute players in the Topeka area, April Flutes Day was organized by Rebecca Meador, associate professor of flute at Washburn. The event was held all day Saturday in Garvey Hall at Washburn, and it catered to students of all ages, from elementary through high school. Divided into two halves, the first portion of the day was dedicated to young students, and the second part was set aside for more experienced high school students preparing for a competition.

The morning session was geared primarily toward enjoyable activities for the young flute players.

“We played games like ‘musical red light, green light,'” said Meador. “And we also held a musical relay race.”

Other activities for the young flautists included a posture-improving exercise under the guidance of guest flautist and yoga instructor Matthew Allison. Samantha Kostelecky and Casey Harris led the group through another game called “wacky word compositions.”

The second half of April Flutes Day was devoted to older students who were preparing solo and ensemble selections for a musical contest that is only a couple of weeks away. Organized by the Kansas State High School Activities Association, the competition will be divided into two tiers. Students who receive high enough ratings during the first round will be eligible to proceed to the KSHSAA state-wide competitions.

Meador said the older Flutes Day participants are divided into groups during the afternoon. Members of the Washburn University Flute Ensemble work with the musicians during this time to help prepare them for the competition.

“It’s sort of a one-on-one time, which is important because it’s such a popular contest,” said Meador. She added that Washburn flute players do an excellent job working with the high school students.

“I’m proud of our students,” said Meador. “They’re very dedicated people.”