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Interview With Donor, Rebecca Kelly

We are pleased to introduce our first donor to Positive Notes, Rebecca Kelly, director of R.A. Kelly photography, and manager of the Inner-Faith food cupboard in Abington. Rebecca donated her beautiful DeFord flute. She has recently shared with us a few of her thoughts about music and playing the flute:

How old were you when you started to play the flute? In the West Hartford public school system where I was a student, all students learned the recorder in 3rd grade. We were allowed to choose an instrument in 4th grade.

Why did you choose to play the flute? Why did you choose to play a musical instrument altogether? I believe I chose the flute because my friend’s mother played it, and my friend was going to play it too. We were able to play duets together and we both played in the church we attended.

What is your favorite thing about the flute? I love the lyrical sound of the flute. It can remind me of birds and of wind and of the mysteries of nature, and then it can transport me to another fantastic world entirely.

What is your favorite thing about music in general? Music touches and nurtures the humanity in us. It really does nourish the soul. I am in awe of composers who can create such beauty and conjure so many emotions.

What are some things that you learned playing the flute? Well, I learned about discipline. If you don’t practice your music, you don’t master it. I still have nightmares about being on stage for a flute solo and not knowing the music. (That never happened, by the way.) I also learned about composers who wrote for the flute and about early instruments, which were quite different from our modern flutes.

What are some skills that you may have developed from playing the flute? In high school I played in small music ensembles where I was the only flute part. In those situations, I clearly had to have mastered my part because no one was going to pull me through it. Also, being one part of four, say, meant that we all had to work together and no one part was more important than the other. I was the first chair in my band and orchestra in middle school (I only played ensembles in high school.) That meant that the rest of the flute players looked to me to be a good example and a leader. I guess playing the flute helped me learn responsibility in a fun way!

If you never decided to play an instrument as a kid, do you think that you would regret it as an adult? Oh, absolutely. I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to play both flute and piano. I had so many wonderful experiences playing music with others and performing for appreciative audiences. Those are memories I still hold close to my heart.

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