Talk: “Fused: Pop Ideas + Classical Sounds”
Meghan Bennett, flute
Artistry is elusive and defies definition. Still, the presence of artistry is unmistakable. Artists fuse high-level craftsmanship with humanity and honesty. This process of connecting one’s craft with one’s inner self differs greatly depending on the artist; however, honesty and vulnerability remain a constant in the process. By viewing documentaries and interviews featuring Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Céline Dion, Quincy Jones and Audra McDonald, we take a relevant and creative look into the connections between music, thought, feeling and society, and examine the meaning of the word “artist.” Delving into the personal perspective of varied popular artists will serve as the impetus for self-reflection regarding our individual, deliberate participation in both the world of arts and the world at large.
Recent presentations include Oberlin Conservatory, The University of Texas at Austin, Baylor University, University of Virginia Flute Forum and the New Jersey Flute Fair.
Meghan Bennett recently began as Assistant Music Professor and Director of Woodwind Studies at New York University in fall of 2023.
She was awarded top prizes in the South Carolina Flute Society Young Artist Competition, the Morning, Afternoon and Eau Claire Music Club Competition, the Atlanta Flute Club Young Artist Competition, Flute Society of Kentucky Young Artist Competition, and the Greater Philadelphia Flute Society Collegiate Young Artist Competition. Bennett has also competed in the National Flute Association Young Artist Competition and the Fischoff Competition.
Passionate about collaborating with communities of color through classical music, Bennett traveled to Chile and Ghana in 2019 for residencies at Centro Cultural San Antonio and the Matic Music Club where she taught flute, music theory and pedagogy classes. She curated Honesty of Voice, a five-part conversation series targeting a dynamic and diverse set of flutists who shared their professional journeys and insight into balancing life and the profession. As an artist-mentor, Dr. Bennett embraces the opportunity to speak publicly about social issues. In 2020 she developed a four-part Facebook conversation series—Let’s Talk—amplifying the Black experience through the lens of classical music. The episodes gave in-depth analyses of Black experiences, explored systemic racism, and generated steps for change.