Jeffrey Hsu, Flutist & Stringless Artist


I realize I may need to create another website for my personal career as a classical musician, i.e., flutist (primary) and stringed/stringless violin and cello (secondary). When I merit an orchestral title, I’ll do that…. For now, I’ll blog here. First order of business, for my musical career (apart from Stringless Technology entrepreneurship), is to define my values and answer the following question:

Why do I want be a flutist and stringless artist?

To be a positive male role model, especially on flute.

To inspire excellence in art without promoting a competitive culture. In other words, I value the hard work, discipline, sacrifices, and self-care that is needed to produce high-quality acoustic or electroacoustic performances. I do not believe that competition is a necessary motivator. Rather, the love of an instrument and of music, along with a sincere desire to improve, should be adequate inspiration to play at our best.

To shed light on the value of mental practice and virtual osmosis, and to advance electronic (i.e., electroacoustic) music-making for the symphony orchestra – its composers, musicians, sound producers, and its prospectively vast audience.

I am a seeker of knowledge and truths, especially in the circles of flute and violin, and I wish to share such pertinent knowledge and truths with others.

I have matured into an artist, and I can only identify myself as a musician.

On flute, I have returned–after a lengthy retirement–with a Burkart Elite flute, have performed in Brook Ferguson’s Bel Canto performance class, attended CSU-Pueblo Flute Day, am playing piccolo with Freedom Winds, joined the Rocky Mountain Flute Choir on bass flute, attended the 2018 NFA convention in Orlando, procured a Bulgheroni piccolo, and performed live flute for Natural Grocers.

Special Thanks and Attached History:

Lisa M. Hsu (1997) – bought me my first “step-up” model flute: Miyazawa (Equivalent to 402)
Stringless Technology (2013 – 2018) – improved my technique and comprehension after fully retiring from flute in 2009 (sold my Miyazawa after graduating from music school in 2006).
Paul P. Langley (2018)- bought me my current “high-quality” flute: Burkart Elite Flute (#1124)
Flute Center of New York – provided a reasonable platform to navigate the great labyrinth of flutes.
J.L. Smith and Co. – introduced me to the Bulgheroni piccolo at the 2018 NFA convention.
BBVA Compass – financed the flute and piccolo.
State Farm – insured my flute and piccolo.
Steve Hotzler – encouraged me to play flute again and invited me to play with Freedom Winds.
Mile High Freedom Band: Freedom Winds – welcomed a seat in band for the first time since 2006.
Barbara Camp – encouraged me to play flute at the professional level instead of strings.
Brook Ferguson – helped me with the Burkart purchase and is a “top-notch” role model and teacher.
Ellen Ramsey – helped me with the Burkart purchase.
Mary-Ellen Dooley – provided positive feedback and guidance.
Marilee Snyder – provided positive feedback and guidance.
Olivia Lynn Kieffer – is supportive of my return to flute.
Dr. Richard Soule (UNLV) – was my second flute professor. He emphasized natural lines and contours and helped me to relax. UNLV gave me my long-awaited orchestral experience and a stage to advance piccolo.
Dr. Bradley Garner (CCM – UC) – was my first flute professor. Like Dorothy DeLay, he ‘guided’ his flute studio while licensing us with our own unique artistry, and CCM exposed me to excellence (in particular, Erinn Frechette and Jessica Huang). Special thanks to Jack Wellbaum (CCM) for requiring piccolo class/study.
Sherrie Parker – was my first flute teacher (in high school) and gave me valuable tips, extra time, and attention.
Thomas Leslie and Terri Milligan – my college band directors who gave me leadership roles and good direction.
Tommy Yu – composer who dedicated music to me in college.
Mr. and Mrs. Jackson and Ms. K and Karen McCauley- my HS music directors, all of whom, got me started in music and who allowed me to explore different instruments.
Darryl Nakatani – for lending me a bass flute to smartly relax my embouchure and to enjoy the full spectrum of the flute family.

 

Author: Stringless Artist

By choice, I started studying music when I was in the 5th grade. Not by choice, I was assigned to play sax. Through high school, I exercised self-agency and learned to play clarinet, flute, and cello in pursuit of orchestra. After playing flute for only a year-and-a-half, I was accepted into the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati where I studied under one of the world's leading professors of flute performance. After CCM, I pursued architecture at the University of Nevada Las Vegas where I won two international design competitions: Leading Edge and Walt Disney Imagineering. Before getting my bachelor's in music, I also won the UNLV concerto competition on flute. Post graduation, I went on to work for a global architecture firm (Archurban) in mainland China, and back in the states, I wrote my first electronic music album (P A X M A X). Missing music performance, I decided to revisit cello. I received further training at the Nevada School of the Arts and the Multnomah Arts Center, and I played cello in the Beaverton Symphony Orchestra for two seasons. During that time, I invented a stringless platform for learning the violin (the bracket violin). This event--without pause--was the most significant pivot in my life! While in pursuit of patents, I developed conceptual, technological designs for stringless electronic training aids and musical instruments (beyond structural models), or more specifically, stringless controllers/synthesizers for advancing pedagogy, furthering artistic capabilities, and real-time electronic music making. Looking to make a professional fingerprint with my inventions, I took courses in "Leading Innovation in Arts and Culture" and "Teaching the Violin and Viola" respectively at Vanderbilt and Northwestern Universities (via Coursera). I also have had multiple "Stringless Technology" exhibits at the NoCo Mini Maker Faire and Violin Society of America, taught violin at the Boys and Girls Club, and developed therapy applications through volunteer hospice and palliative care. I can give paid private music instruction on flute, violin, and cello, or offer continuing education enhancement classes to professional musicians and teachers. I have performed/appeared on the stringless violin at Make Music Day Denver, Apogaea, Sloan's Lake Rehab, Denver Gay Pride, and Suncrest Hospice. I was a finalist for TEDx MileHigh, was recently interviewed for my ProBoPat Success Story (UPDATE: I received my first patent for "Stringless Bowed Musical Instrument" on Sept. 19, 2017), and am currently working on a targeted prototyping/beta testing/business plan (with SCORE Colorado and Mi Casa Resource Center). I have also swiftly returned to flute--after a lengthy retirement--and am already engaged in multiple performance opportunities!

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