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Words From a Music Master: Enrich, Inspire, Educate

WCU's associate professor of flute Kimberly Reighley says she has "three goals: to enrich, inspire and educate."

The $10,000 Master's Fellowship she was awarded this year from the Delaware Division of the Arts will help her do just that.

The DDOA awarded only one master's award this year, choosing her from the field of 91 Delaware choreographers, composers, musicians, writers and visual artists who applied. Reighley, who is principal flute with the Delaware Symphony Orchestra and OperaDelaware, is a previous winner of a DDOA Individual Artist Fellowship. She plays both Baroque and modern works on flute, piccolo, alto flute and baroque flute.

Master's applicants are evaluated on the artistic quality of up to three samples of their work. They must show a sustained history of artistic activity within Delaware and describe the impact it has had in the state and beyond. In her narrative, Reighley noted that she has "made significant contributions to the solo and chamber repertoire for flute. … Delaware composers Mark Hagerty, Ingrid Arauco, and Jennifer Margaret Barker have written solo works for me, three of which have been recorded: Hagerty's Sea Level for solo alto flute on his CD Forays; Arauco's Florescence for flute and harpsichord on Mélomanie's CD Florescence; and Barker's Dumgoyne for flute and harpsichord on the Mélomanie CD Excursions," the last CD just released in late 2014.

Works by those and several other Delaware composers (as well as regional composers) have been commissioned and premiered by Mélomanie, the Wilmington-based ensemble for which Reighley is co-artistic director and co-founder. The quintet connects Baroque music with contemporary works performing on both period and modern instruments. Reighley co-produces its concert series at the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts.

The group also worked with University of Delaware composition professor Jennifer Margaret Barker to create a unique educational opportunity. "Composition students wrote pieces for members of Mélomanie which were then critiqued, performed and recorded in a master class setting. One of the young composers' compositions was selected to be performed for one of the ensemble's series concerts."

Reighley has been teaching WCU students as the University's flute professor since 2005 and has been part of the Quintsylvania Winds, the WCU School of Music's faculty woodwind quintet, since its debut performance at Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall in May 2008.

Her strong commitment to music education brings her to regional schools for concerts with the Quintsylvania Winds and the Delaware Symphony Arts in Education program, as well as master classes in schools and at the Music School of Delaware.

Of her role at West Chester, she says, "I enthusiastically prepare future performers and music educators. My University students have won full-time positions with the United States Coast Guard Band, the United States Army Field Band, regional orchestras and theater orchestras. They have been hired in public schools throughout the Northeast and been accepted into prestigious graduate school music programs, including the Boston Conservatory, NYU, The Hartt School of Music, and Temple University."

Reighley will use the grant funds to commission two compositions she will premiere at her solo recital and to acquire new instruments. Her concert will be held Sunday, Sept.13, at 2 p.m. at the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts in Wilmington. "It will feature works that were written especially for me [by] Delaware composers Mark Hagerty, Jennifer Margaret Barker, Ingrid Arauco and Chuck Holdeman. Chuck will be writing a piece for me for piccolo. I will also premiere a piece by Brazilian composer, Sergio Roberto de Oliviera, who is writing a piece for baroque flute and harpsichord. Works by the other composers mentioned are written for flute or alto flute and harpsichord and solo alto flute."

Kimberly Reighley and Mélomanie perform a free concert at WCU's Ware Recital Hall in Swope Music Building on Wednesday, April 8, at 8:15 p.m. Works by WCU music faculty Robert Maggio and Larry Nelson (retired) will be performed in addition to works by Wilder, Guillmain and Abel. Click here for the program.