Last Year’s Repertoire

The 2015 INFORMED FLUTIST camp–1st annual–had everything in 3’s — 3 rounds of auditions, 3 “tool kits”, and 3 repertoire lists! (see below).

“How are you going to get through all that?” said Robert Willoughby to Leela and I when we showed him our brochure.  home_header_new2

Well, he was right, it was a lot to cover, and it didn’t help that we got rained out on our final day. (Heavy rains made driving treacherous; the University was official closed, and with much sadness, we decided it would be best  to cancel the last half-day of the class, to make sure everyone stayed safe, and those who had long drives or airplane flights  that day would make it out of town early.

For 2016 we will have simplified a little bit to make the Camp even more about orchestral repertoire. There are  excerpts (some “top 10”, some more unusual  , a narrower selection of solo rep  AND  orchestra duos and trios in order to work on the teamwork of orchestral playing.

.  See “ABOUT US” page for details.



Orchestral Colors: Afternoon of a Faun, Daphnis, Mendelssohn Scherzo, Das Lied von der Erde, Bartok Concerto for Orchestra, Brahms I, Prokoviev Romeo and Juliet, Shostakovich 7

Historical Perspectives: Bach B-minor Mass, St. Matthew Passion, Dance of the Blessed Sprits, Leonore Overture, Brahms IV

Concertos and Solos: Syrynx, Bach Partita, Martin Ballade, Nielsen Concerto Mvt. I, Mozart G & D expositions.

Mock auditions each day provide an opportunity to think about all aspects of the audition process by focusing on both sides of the “screen”

Participants will make acoustic observations while listening to an orchestra in concert and later experiment with excerpts and acoustics on the stage of the same concert hall.

Participants will ​gain deeper insight and practical application of historical principles to bring a new HIP (Historically Informed Performance) dimension to their playing!

interpretation: legato, meter, researching, critical listening, historical informed performance (HIP) , try a Baroque flute, dynamics and intonation in micro- and macro-view

efficiency: sound production, vibrato, breathing

intention: mental preparation, stage presence, being an excellent colleague, creating performance opportunities


Round 1  – Prelims – Sunday, June 14

Mozart Flute Concerto in G Major, exposition only, without piano accompaniment

Lenore Overture #3 (solo from Allegro section only)

Brahms Symphony No. 1, Mvt. 4, solo only

Mendelssohn Scherzo from Midsummer Night’s Dream

Prokoviev Romeo and Juliet selections (excerpts provided)

Round 2 – Semi-Finals Monday, June 15

Bach “Aus Liebe” from St. Matthew Passion

Bartok Concerto for Orchestra Mvt. 4 (cadenza) (excerpt provided)

Debussy Afternoon of a Faun

Ravel Daphnis et Chloe – solo

Shostakovich Symphony No. 6 (excerpt provided)

Round 3 – Finals – Tuesday June 16

Beethoven Leonore Overture # 3 (solo from Allegro section only)

Gluck Dance of the Blessed Spirits

Mahler Das Lied von der Erde (excerpts from Theodore Presser)

Mendelssohn Scherzo from Midsummer Night’s Dream

All passages can be found in the Theodore Presser Orchestral Excerpts collection, except those noted above.

Application Deadline Extended

March and April have been  extremely busy months for me–and for most of the  musicians I know!

We are extending the application deadline for this summer’s The Informed Flutist for another week or so, because it’s been hard for any of us to carve out time to firm up summer plans these past few weeks!

If you are thinking you might like to perform in this June’s intensive orchestral repertoire workshop’s mock auditions and coachings,  please let me know via e-mail to:, so I can be in touch with you about receiving your application materials.

If you are on the fence, or would like to consider it for another summer, like 2016, I’d still love to hear from you!

Application materials still need to be sent to the Texas Music Festival office via regular, old-fashioned mail –if possible by Friday, April 17th.

–Aralee Dorough


Who is the Informed Flutist?

When it comes to orchestral repertoire, most of what I know comes from my lessons with Robert Willoughby during my formative years at the Oberlin Conservatory. He taught me the importance of studying the score and considering as Willoughby, Leelamany details as possible about the harmony, rhythm, orchestration and context.

A few years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Leela Breithaupt at a birthday party for Mr. Willoughby in New Hampshire. We discovered we had much in common IN ADDITION to our admiration for our teacher and our experiences as students at Oberlin and Peabody, respectively (we both have kids, have an interest in holistic wellness, we like fine food–even better–have husbands who are great cooks–just to name just a few)

We began a habit of meeting up in Boston to drive up to visit Robert Willoughby in New Hampshire and spend a weekend talking with him about music and food–over dinner at some of Portsmouth’s wonderful restaurants! (We have done this twice–both times it was cold and snowy–see photos at riWilloughby and meght)

Last year Leela visited me in Houston to teach some Baroque Flute for Modern Flutists workshops for my students at UH and Leone Buyse’s studio at Rice. Her classes were wonderful! When it was time to start creating this orchestral repertoire camp I knew it would be great to have her partner with me.

Leela came up with the title “The Informed Flutist” and I think you can guess by now who inspired it. If anyone can claim that title, it is our esteemed teacher–in fact, that phrase could be used to summarize the goal of his teaching.
Leela and I are looking forward to sharing some of our experiences as Willoughby students– and continuing to be better informed, ourselves–this summer

–Aralee Dorough

How It Started! Thanks! Concert Hall!

Thanks to the impetus and inspiration of my friend Jennifer Keeney, wonderful flutist and teacher based in Austin, TX, and formerly my colleague at UH, this summer’s class idea was born! It was also Jennifer’s idea to approach the Texas Music Festival about hosting us…

And thanks to the patience and knowledge of TMF’s Artistic Director Alan Austin and Associate Director Melissa McCrimmon, who sat with me and went over all the logistical details–in spite of having plenty of their OWN work to do–our 4 day repertoire class will have a home, physically and conceptually, along side a vibrant orchestral festival.

no flute sepiaI am extremely excited about having the opportunity to share an orchestra concert with The Informed Flutist participants on our first evening and then be able to discuss aspects of what we heard the following day. On Day 4 we’ll build upon this by finishing class on the stage of the concert hall, making some acoustic experiments and having our Final Round.

Welcome to the Informed Flutist

Preparations have begun for the very first ever Informed Flutist masterclass this summer. Along with co-faculty Leela Breithaupt and Sergio Pallotelli, I will be looking forward to welcoming 15 to 20 accomplished flutists to my “home” at the University of Houston and Texas Music Festival this June.

I’ll be stealing a few days away fromcrosslegged the Houston Symphony, which maintains a busy concert schedule in summer as well as during the regular season, to focus on some of my favorite repertoire, to share some tips, tricks and stories from my own experiences as well as to learn some new things from my colleagues and from the participants!

In this laboratory-setting, I hope to quantify some of the elements which go into playing successful orchestra auditions.One thing I know, already, though–it all comes back to making music. We know “music making” when we hear it, but how does one get there?

Over the years as a principal flutist with the Houston Symphony, I have had the opportunity to participate in the hiring and development of many of my colleagues–flutists, oboists, clarinetists and bassoonists–by serving on audition committees. One thing I’ve always wanted to share with students is the PERSPECTIVE of listening as a committee member–and that is exactly what we have planned for our class this summer.

This mock-audition feature will give participants a little extra audition experience, but I also hope it will help crystalize some of the unique challenges of presenting one’s music making in an audition setting.

–Aralee Dorough