Native American Flute classes are now available at
Howard Community College in Columbia, MD
Please visit the HCC website by clicking HERE to find out more information ~
please register early, as class size is limited!
The flute is one of the oldest instruments in the world. Every indigenous people created flutes of different kinds, and used whatever materials were available: clay, mud, bamboo, wood, stone, metal. In North America, there is a strong indigenous flute tradition, and many myths, stories, and melodies to accompany it.
I teach Native American Flute in single workshops, multi-day workshops, and classes spanning several weeks. Though my ancestry is Cherokee, I was not raised within that tradition, and I don’t feel it is appropriate to teach “Native American” melodies in my classes. In finding my own way with this instrument, I have discovered that it is far more valuable to learn to approach music making from what I consider a more traditional way of thinking.
In my classes and workshops, I offer students the opportunity to become comfortable and fluent with the instrument initially. Once that has been established, I guide students into deep listening practices that establish a connection with the source of all creativity. Students will connect with the natural world, rhythms of the day and night, as well as the shifting of seasons and weather, and will explore creating original music from these practices. Whether a one day workshop or a four week class, students will be given the tools and practices to create a relationship between the world and the flute, and to express themselves musically from an intuitively guided space. No prior experience is required, but intermediate and advanced students are welcome to participate as well.
Overview of classes (4-6 total):
~ Intro to Native American flute – instrument basics of technique, breathing, tone production, style; introduction to intuitive listening; create one original melody; share melodies in circle.
~ Review of basics of the flute; share 1st melody in circle; teach each other and share; (learning by ear and applying new techniques, etc); introduce new techniques from this style; introduction to melody and phrase shape; create 2nd original melody based on a common/shared theme (song for the rain, wind, night, etc) – share in circle, and then play in sequence.
~ Deepen listening and understanding of how melody works – shape, contour, speed, pitch, motion, etc; also, how melodies come together to create structure in a song or composition; create more individual/improvised melodies and songs; themes include totem animals and spirits, storytelling using the flute, music for meditation and healing, other themes arise at the preference and interest of students – very much class directed; share melodies and songs in circle at each class.
~ Native America tradition of ceremonial and ritual music – calling the directions – students will create original melodies for this purpose; share in circle.
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Jon Norris Music & Arts is the flutemaker of choice for Angela Blueskies
All students enrolling at HCC will receive a beautiful handmade flute from Jon Norris!