Classical music aficionados throughout the area mark June on their calendars each year, because that’s when flutist William Bennett, considered “the greatest living flute player in the world,” hosts a special concert on the Austin Peay State University campus.
This year, he’ll perform his transcription of the Violin Sonata in f minor by Felix Mendelssohn at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, June 27, in the Mabry Concert Hall. Dr. Lisa Wolynec, APSU professor of music, will join Bennett for a performance of Rigoletto Fantasie for two flutes by Franz Doppler. The event is open to the public with a suggested donation of $10.
In 1995, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II presented Bennett with the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for his distinguished services to music. He is in Clarksville this June because, for the third year in a row, APSU is hosting the William Bennett Summer Flute Academy, his only master class offered in the U.S. Bennett previously held the class in Chicago, but after visiting APSU as the Acuff Chair of Excellence in 2011, he decided to move the academy to Austin Peay.
“He’s just a great teacher and a charismatic player,” Wolynec said. “He’s very interested in the expressive components of the flute.”
Bennett studied the instrument under the legendary flutist Marcel Moise at the Paris Conservatory. He brings this knowledge and his years of experience to the summer academy. Students send in audition recordings from all over the country for the chance to play for him in the master class. This year, musicians from Boston, New York, New Mexico, Virginia, Michigan and Florida are coming to APSU to study under Bennett.
Individuals interested in simply auditing the class can pay a daily fee of $125 to attend.
For more information on the concerts or the master class, contact Wolynec at email@example.com.