Down Art Avenue: Rhonda Larson is guest flutist for JSU concert Jan. 31
by Hervey Folsom
Special to The Star
Jan 29, 2014 | 753 views |  0 comments | 32 32 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Skillfully played, a piece of music is a living thing, especially performed by the flute. It has an enchanting sound and is full of poetic suggestion. To the audience Friday night in JSU’s Mason Hall, the flute will be given credit for its important place in the music world in a concert by an accomplished, award-winning flutist.

Grammy winning flutist Rhonda Larson will perform in concert at JSU on Friday, Jan. 31 at 7:30 p.m in the Performance Center. The admission is free.

Larson will give an innovative program which will showcase flutes from around the world (modern flute, panpipes, Indian flutes, Japanese flutes, and more). She travels world-wide performing for sold-out audiences and will perform with accompaniment tracks of her band for the JSU concert.  Her use of technology places her as a musician in this new generation; she will perform amplified for the entire concert.

Larson is a friend of Jeremy Benson of the JSU music faculty at the university. The two met her at a recent conference. Benson’s thought is that everyone should enjoy her performance.

Larson is a flutist, composer and bandleader who is bringing new attention to the flute with her diversity. As she composes, this woodwind player continues to be a new force in flute music as she attracts interest in her delivery of varying musical styles; she, with breath and flutes, takes us around the world with her performances, extending her popularity with playing an array of ethnic flutes. For example, she has performed as guest soloist along with famed fiddler Eileen Ivers of the original “Riverdance” troupe. Larson’s resume is long and impressive and Jacksonville people will count this an unforgettable show.

The flutist has also shared the stage with such luminaries as Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama in South Africa when she was a musical ambassador for the United States performing for the Parliament of the World’s Religions.

Larson has also recorded flute melodies for the CBS television series “Survivor” and “The Restaurant” with her band Ventus. Her most recent engagements include concerts in Minsk, Balarus.

Larson entered the national music arena in 1985 by winning first prize in the National Flute Association’s Young Artist Competition in 1985. From then, she embarked on a journey of combining diverse musical styles in addition to perfecting her classical training.

It is her versatility that makes Larson unique. Also, her compositions have been orchestrated for symphony orchestras throughout the United States. In the orchestra, the flute has been called “a delightful singer” with its soft, clear cool, fluid and soaring tones. It is easily recognizable on the stage beside other instruments because it is held horizontally to play.

Another aspect of Larson, a, unique musician’s life is her studio. It is an octagonal three-story tower in her home in southwestern Connecticut. Her family lives part of the year in Italy.

This is one of the many events for the public by JSU’s music department. Everyone is invited.
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