In memory of our founder, Dr. George Morey, we are publishing an updated version of our history. The original article was based on an interview with Dr. Morey and first appeared in our October 1988 newsletter.
The Texas Flute Club was founded in 1974 by Dr. George Morey of Denton and Joe Tallal of Dallas in an effort to bring flutists and flute lovers of all ages in the North Texas community together. An organizational meeting was held in Grapevine with approximately twenty people attending. Our first officers were elected with Joe Tallal serving as our first president. During the next several months meetings were held in Dallas, Denton, Fort Worth, and Arlington. At the end of our first year, the Texas Flute Club hired a small string orchestra and sponsored an inaugural concert featuring area flutists. During the second year, the flute club continued to grow. Meetings included discussion of flute acoustics, emergency repairs, breath control, antique flutes, and performances of chamber music. In the spring of 1976, many members formed a flute choir which performed under the direction of Dr. George Morey at the Texas Music Educator’s Convention in Dallas. A highlight of the Texas Flute Club’s third year was a visit by Mark Thomas, founder of the National Flute Association. Meetings continued to inform area flutists on a variety of topics. Under the leadership of our third president, Myrna Brown, plans began to be made for our first flute festival. A Texas Flute Club newsletter described the guiding philosophy for the first festival:
.. this is planned to be a festival of the highest caliber where our own fine area flutists can perform and be heard and for all flutists to share in their experience. The purpose behind the festival is to provide a place of performance to flutists and a listening experience for all others. Emphasis is on excellence of performance with helpful criticism being made by the judges.
The first flute festival was held during our fourth year. On November 12th and 13th, 1977, approximately 100 flutists gathered at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Our early festivals were directed toward a specific stylistic period, and the first festival focused on the Baroque period. Albert Tipton was the guest artist for the first festival. The success of the first flute festival led to a second in April of 1979. That year was a busy one for our members and President Carol Farrar as the Texas Flute Club hosted the National Flute Association Convention at the Hotel Adolphus in Dallas. The theme for the convention was “Deep in the Heart of Texas” and flutists packed the hotel for three flute-filled days. Many of our members assisted with the details of the convention and several performed on the program, including the Texas Flute Club Ensemble. Over the years the flute club grew, and in 1983 changed its name to the Texas Flute Society. It continues to sponsor meetings and concerts throughout the area. The highlight of each year is the annual Flute Festival which has grown to over 1000 flutists in recent years and includes the Myrna W. Brown Artist Competition. With the help of local music stores and the Flute Industry Council we have been able to bring nationally and internationally recognized flutists to our festival, including Bonita Boyd, Leone Buyse, Susan Milan, and William Bennett. Through the years of growth and change we’ve tried to keep the original goals of the Texas Flute Club in mind: to provide a place for flutists of all ages and abilities to perform and learn more about their instrument, and to provide a first-class listening experience for all music lovers. Let’s continue to uphold this tradition.