Annual Flute Festival

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the SFS Board has determined

that the 2021 Flute Festival will be presented online.

Information about the Festival is updated regularly;

check back soon for a detailed schedule of events.

2021 Seattle Flute Festival

with Valerie Coleman

Saturday & Sunday, April 10 & 11, 2021

Presented via SFS Online


​Recitals, Workshops, and Presentations, including the 9th Annual Young Artist Competition, Horsfall Winners Recital, Weeping Willow Grant Presentation, and the world premiere of Ken Benshoof’s BitterSweet featuring flutist Paul Taub

Young Members Recital - Apply Now!

The Young Members Recital is open to flutists in 5th grade or younger who are currently taking private flute lessons and who are not yet eligible for the Horsfall Competition. Both teacher and student must be current members of the Seattle Flute Society. The 2021 Young Members Recital will consist of pre-recorded videos and be presented online as part of the SFS Virtual Flute Festival, to be held over the weekend of April 10-11, 2021.


To enter the recital, please email Cassie Lear at with the following information:


  1. Performer Full Name as it should appear in the program

  2. Repertoire Selection (including composer and movements, if applicable)

  3. Pianist Name, if applicable (not required)

  4. Performer’s Age

  5. Performer’s Grade

  6. Performer’s School

  7. Parent/Guardian Name

  8. Contact Email for Parent/Guardian (you may choose one; all correspondence will be sent to the chosen email)

  9. Performer’s Flute Teacher

  10. Flute Teacher Email


Once you submit this information upload your performance video here


Any type of digital video recording available to you will be fine - smartphone recordings, video camera recordings, etc - but it must be a video. Performances are limited to 5 minutes or less and the video should include as much of the performer’s body and flute as possible. Dress in performance attire.

All materials must be submitted before 11:59pm PDT, March 15, 2021.

Valerie Coleman

Our 2021 Flute Festival Guest Artitist is the Grammy®-nominated flutist, composer, and musical entrepreneur Valerie Coleman. Founder of the performer-composer trio Umama Womama and the acclaimed Imani Winds, Coleman was recently named to the faculty of the University of Miami's Frost School of Music. Her multi-faceted career has included performances with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Boston Symphony Orchestra Tanglewood Learning Institute (TLI), Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Carnegie Hall, and the Kennedy Center, to name a few.

Coleman’s passion for chamber music performance is what guided her to become a top advocate, mentor and specialist of the field, with an extensive performance history of premieres and collaborations at festivals and chamber music societies across the United States, with esteemed artists such as Dover Quartet,  Ani and Ida Kavafian, Yo-Yo Ma, David Shifrin, Gil Kalish, members of the LA Chamber Orchestra, and jazz legends Paquito D’Rivera, Stefon Harris, and Jason Moran, among many others. She has given countless flute and chamber music masterclasses at institutions in 49 states and over 5 continents, including The Eastman School of Music, The Juilliard School, Curtis Institute, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College of Music, Yale University, University of Colorado-Boulder, Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, Carnegie Mellon, New England Conservatory, Oberlin College, and Beijing Conservatory.

Her work as a composer has garnered multiple awards and critical acclaim, and her work UMOJA was listed by the Chamber Music America as one of the “Top 101 Great American Ensemble Works." Alongside recent commissions from American Composers Orchestra, Carnegie Hall and The National Flute Association, she has enjoyed commissions and premieres from Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, The Library of Congress, The Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, Hartford Symphony Orchestra, and The Universities of Chicago, South Carolina, Michigan, Virginia Commonwealth, Hawaii Manoa and Ohio State. 

Advocacy and mentorship of artists and emerging ensembles is important to Valerie: in 2011, she created the Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival, a summer mentorship program that has welcomed musicians from over 100 institutions both nationally and abroad. She has also served on the as an adjudicator for National Flute Association’s High School Artist Competition, Concert Artist Guild, APAP’s Young Performing Concert Artists fellowship, ASCAP’s Morton Gould Award, MapFund Award and the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. She is on the board of advisors for Composers Now, MacDowell Colony, and Sphinx LEAD, and has previously served on the APAP’s Classical Connections Committee, National Flute Association’s New Music Advisory Committee and Board Nomination Committee.

Valerie studied flute with Julius Baker, Judith Mendenhall, Doriot Dwyer, Leone Buyse and Alan Weiss; composition with Martin Amlin and Randy Wolfe. She is published by Theodore Presser, International Opus and has her own company, V Coleman Music.

More information can be found at

Ken Benshoof

In celebration of the Seattle Flute Society's 40th Season, we commissioned a work, BitterSweet for Flute and Piano, from Seattle composer Ken Benshoof. It will be premiered by Paul Taub at the 2021 Flute Festival. Ken Benshoof's music is familiar to the Seattle flute community; he has previously written acclaimed works for the piccolo which were premiered by Seattle's own Zart Dombourian-Eby and Alicia Suarez.

Composer/pianist Ken Benshoof was born in 1933 on a Nebraska farm. He went through high school in Fairbanks Alaska. Studies at Pacific Lutheran University and the Spokane Conservatory were followed by a two year stint in the U.S. Army, a bachelors degree from the University of Washington, a Masters at San Francisco State University, and studies in London at the Guildhall School of Music as a Fulbright Scholar. His most influential teachers were Volfgangs Darzins, John Verrall, Roger Nixon, George Frederick McKay, and Afred Neiman.

Primarily a composer of chamber pieces, Benshoof has received commissions from a wide variety of sources, most notably the Kronos String Quartet for whom he has produced eight works. He also served as resident composer at San Diego's Old Globe Theater over several seasons and at the Seattle Repertory Theater for a number of years.

More information can be found at

The Seattle Flute Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. All donations to the SFS are tax deductible. With your support, the SFS can continue to bring wonderful flute-related opportunities to the Seattle area. 

Donors are acknowledged in concert programs.


Seattle Flute Society, 4244 University Way NE, PO Box 45597, Seattle, WA 98105

©Seattle Flute Society 2021