Admired for her unique sound, fast articulation and fluid technique, flutist Melissa Graham is celebrated for her multi dimensional career of performance and pedagogy. Dr. Graham is the principal flutist with the Midland Odessa Symphony and Chorale, flutist with the West Texas Winds, and is currently teaching in the Midland Odessa area at institutions such as the University of Texas Permian Basin, Odessa College, Odessa High School, Permian High School, and numerous junior high schools. When in her native Colorado, Dr. Graham plays regularly with several different orchestras and ensembles, such as the Greeley Philharmonic, Fort Collins Symphony, and the Mercury Duo with guitarist Patrick Sutton. Officially founded in 2011 (after playing together for several years), the Mercury Duo’s most recent project is work toward recording an album of music compositionally inspired by star-crossed lovers, entitled “Come Weep With Me.”This album is projected to be available in 2013. A recent development in her private studio is the release of Dr. Graham’s method book, entitled Beyond the Page; praised as an “innovative” and “holistic” approach to learning the flute, this book is designed with a series of levels applicable to students ranging from the self-motivated junior high school student to college and beyond. Dr. Graham graduated with a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she studied with Christina Jennings. In addition to Ms. Jennings, Dr. Graham has studied with Pamela Endsley and Peter Lloyd, amongst others.
Flutist Julee Kim Walker remains an active performer and pedagogue in the DFW and Texoma regions. She is the newly appointed Instructor of Flute at Texas A&M University – Commerce starting Fall 2012. Prior to her appointment, she held teaching positions at Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Grayson County College, Eastfield College, and the University of North Texas as a Teaching Fellow. Ms. Walker received her Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her Master’s degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Currently, she is a Doctoral Candidate (ABD) at the University of North Texas. Ms. Walker serves on the Board of Directors in the Texas Flute Society, and previously the Oklahoma Flute Society.
Known for his lyric expression and powerful sound, Venezuelan flutist Ysmael Reyes enjoys a varied career as a soloist, orchestral player, and teacher. Mr. Reyes has performed in the US, Russia, Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia. He has been featured as a soloist with the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Venezuela and the Gran Mariscal de Ayacucho Symphony in his home country, with the Society of Symphonic Concerts Orchestra of São João del-Rei, in Brazil and with the Cheyenne and Fort Collins Symphony Orchestras and the Boulder Bach Festival Orchestra in the US. Mr. Reyes has been a prize winner in the First Latin American Flute Competition, the National Flute Association Convention Performers Competition, the Music Award by the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver and the Bruce Ekstrand Memorial Competition at the University of Colorado at Boulder. From 2008 to 2010 he was chosen by Verne Q. Powell Flues of Boston as a scholar for the Powell Academy.
Mr. Reyes joined the Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra as Principal Flute in 2006, and is currently on the faculty at Regis University and the Rocky Mountain Center for Musical Arts. He is invited frequently to teach at the Latin American Flute Academy and the National System of Youth Orchestras in Venezuela.
Mr. Reyes received his BM from the University of the Arts in Venezuela with Luis Julio Toro and Víctor Rojas, his MM from the University of Iowa with Robert Dick and Tadeu Coelho and a DMA from the University of Colorado studying with Christina Jennings and Alexa Still.
Lisa Phillips received a DMA and MM in flute performance and pedagogy from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a BM in flute performance from Ithaca College. She performs with Seven Degrees Flute Quartet and Metroplex Flutes and was recently a top prize winner in the San Diego Flute Guild Artist Gold Competition. She teaches privately in Frisco and Plano, TX and is Vice-President of the Texas Flute Society. Her teachers include Rebecca Gilbert, Christina Jennings, Nancy Andrew, and Dr. Wendy Mehne.
Julia Barnett – Praised for her rich tone and fluid technique throughout the instrument’s range, flutist Julia Barnett is currently pursuing a doctorate at the University of California at Los Angeles where she studies with Sheridon Stokes. She received her Masters of Music in Flute performance at the University of Colorado at Boulder with Christina Jennings in 2009 and received her Bachelor’s of Music in flute performance from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in 2007 as a student of Leone Buyse.
As a soloist she has performed with the San Diego Symphony, San Diego Chamber Orchestra, and the UCLA Symphony. Her interest in new music led to the commission and premiere of Jacob Barton’s ¡AY! ¡AY! ¡AY! ¡AY! in 2006, a work for Flute, Percussion and Kalimba, based upon Mexican folk songs. In March 2010 she was named an Elaine Krown Klein Scholar and in 2008 a Fenstermaker Scholar by the Musical Merit Foundation of San Diego. She has also been a winner in the San Diego Symphony Concerto Competition, as well as the La Jolla Symphony Young Artist Competition, and 2 time finalist in the Coleman Chamber Music Competition. In addition to teaching flute privately, Ms. Barnett coordinated UCLA’s Music Partnership Program this year, bringing private music lessons to inner city public schools.