Horowhenua Chronicle

Magic flute conjures Ka¯ piti delight

Principal Flute with the NZSO brings her passion to the Coastlands Theatre


Bridget Douglas, the Principal Flute with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, will join resident conductor Donal Armstrong and the Ka¯piti Concert Orchestra for a concert at Coastlands Theatre on April 15.

Douglas and her magic flute will join Armstrong and the KCO in playing Mozart's Flute Concerto in G major. Other works on the programme include Anthony Ritchie's Remember Parihaka and Brahms 4th Symphony.

Away from performing Douglas finds time to community groups such as KCO in mentoring young students, holding tutorials throughout the country and generally promoting music in all its forms by commission­ing works by both establishe­d and young composers.

The desire to help amateur musicians was influenced by her early years of Saturday morning music group classes in Dunedin. In later high school years she was greatly influenced by flute teacher Denise Wark.

She was “a generous and encouragin­g teacher . . . who inspired her students to get to the heart of the music. Her love of the flute was infectious,” she said.

Douglas graduated from the Dunedin Youth Orchestra which was her first orchestral experience

“It got me absolutely hooked. I loved the sound and feel of sitting in the orchestra right from the beginning. I really felt at home there and have continued to make it my home ever since.”

Becoming a profession­al orchestral musician wasn't always on the cards.

She excelled at science and because Otago University didn't offer flute performanc­e she gained a BSc in Microbiolo­gy whilst cramming the allowable limits of music theory and history papers into the degree.

Being a regular flautist with the Dunedin Sinfonia (now Symphony Orchestra) led her to Alexa Still, former NZSO Principal Flute and to Victoria University.

Overseas study took her to the prestigiou­s State University of New York, then as a member of the Chicago Civic Orchestra for a season, and rounding off her American experience at the Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall for winning the “Artists Internatio­nal Award”.

A week later in 1997, Douglas became Principal Flute of the NZSO, where she remains to this day.

 ?? ?? Bridget Douglas is the Principal Flute with the NZ Symphony Orchestra.
Bridget Douglas is the Principal Flute with the NZ Symphony Orchestra.

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