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50th Annual NFA Convention
August 11-14, 2022

Hilton Downtown Chicago
720 Michigan Ave.
Chicago, Illinois

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Flute Ensemble Festival




COVID safety:
The safety of NFA members and exhibitors at the 2022 convention is of paramount importance amid continuing concerns of COVID-19. Based on current COVID data, the NFA is requiring that all those participating in and attending the 2022 convention be fully vaccinated or have a negative PCR test within 72 hours of attendance. (The number of shots required to be fully vaccinated will vary depending on which vaccination you had. For example, in the U.S., fully vaccinated means two Pfizer or Moderna shots or one Johnson & Johnson shot. Boosters are recommended to make sure that vaccinations are fully up to date but are not required.) COVID documentation will be checked prior to on-site registration. Masks are strongly recommended inside all convention venues and locations except when performing or presenting. Each of the venues, including the Hilton Chicago, Symphony Center, and Merle Reskin Theatre, will adhere to CDC and local requirements.

Exhibit Hall COVID Protocols — All those entering the exhibit hall are required to adhere to the convention COVID requirements (must be fully vaccinated or provide proof of a negative PCR test within 72 hours of attendance).Masks are strongly recommended in all convention locations. Please observe social distancing protocols in the exhibit hall where possible and, if possible, visit the exhibit hall outside of the busiest times, which are 3:30–4:30 p.m. Thursday to Saturday and 11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. on Sunday. Please observe the requirements of each exhibitor, which may include wearing a mask, using hand sanitizer, and limiting the number of people trying flutes at any one time. Please note that the exhibit hall has a highly efficient ventilation system with regular air exchange. 

AUGUST UPDATE: As the COVID situation continues to evolve in Chicago and around the world, we have new recommendations to ensure the safety of everyone who attends the NFA Convention this summer. Please consider not only your health but the health of those around you, and the impact on the community at large. 

In light of recent changes, we're asking that every convention attendee self-test for COVID before coming to the convention site, regardless of vaccination status. This is especially important for attendees who plan to try out instruments in the exhibit hall. We also request and expect that everyone attending the convention wear a mask whenever possible. 

We appreciate everyone taking measures to ensure the safety of our flute community. Please share this information with collaborative artists and other guests who will be coming to the convention.



Celebrate the evolution of our flute community at a special 50th Anniversary edition of the NFA Convention

"Join us as we celebrate the NFA’s Golden Anniversary Convention in Chicago 2022! This landmark convention will be the culmination of a year-long celebration and will take place at the beautiful Chicago Hilton in downtown Chicago. 

Along with everything you love and have missed about in-person conventions, this special 50th Anniversary convention will include some new and exciting events. First, plan on arriving in Chicago on Wednesday for a special convention kick-off at the Grant Park Music Festival. Also new for this convention will be the first Flute Ensemble Festival taking place alongside the convention, which will include concerts, workshops, and more. This year’s convention will also highlight winners of the NFA’s Golden Anniversary Awards, which are given to individuals who have contributed to the betterment of their communities and made positive impacts serving others.

Programming for this convention is inspired by the idea of evolution and will explore the history of the NFA in order to celebrate how far we’ve come in the last 50 years and to look forward to our shared future together.

I am honored and excited to be Program Chair for the NFA’s 50th anniversary convention. While the 50th Anniversary Committee has been working for years planning the celebration of our Golden Anniversary, this convention is taking on even greater significance as we meet again in person for the first time since 2019. We will once again see old friends, meet new ones, experience the cacophony of the exhibit hall, have chance encounters waiting for the elevators, and re-discover all the joys that come with a live gathering of flutists!

Our Golden Anniversary convention will be a celebration of our richly multifaceted and diverse community.

I can’t wait to see you in Chicago next summer!"

Aaron Goldman 1

— 2022 Program Chair Aaron Goldman


Notable Performers

This year's convention will feature a dazzling array of top-tier talents, including (pictured from left to right) Sharon Bezaly, Jasmine Choi, Valerie Coleman, Brandon Patrick George, Kersten McCall, Demarre McGill, Marina Piccinini, and Alena Walentin.

Gala Concerto Concert

This exciting gala evening presents a rare opportunity to experience an entire concert of flute concertos, performed by virtuoso flutists from around the globe, with a full orchestra. Each year, the Gala Concerto Concert offers an eclectic mix of repertoire featuring flute and piccolo in a variety of periods and styles.

More Info

Leonard Slatkin

Internationally acclaimed conductor Leonard Slatkin will give this year's keynote address and will conduct the Gala Concerto Concert.

Young Artist Legacy Concerts

The Young Artist Competition has promoted young talent since the first competition in 1976, and the list of top prize winners is impressive. The Young Artist Legacy Concerts, featuring prior winners, look back at the impact this competition has had through the decades.

Awardee Tributes

Lifetime Achievement Award recipients Karl Kraber and Ransom Wilson and Distinguished Service Award recipient Nancy Clew will be honored.

Grant Park Opening Concert

Celebrate the eve of our 50th anniversary convention in Grant Park with a premiere performance by Marina Piccinini. Reserve a seat or join the NFA group for free seating on the Great Lawn—bring a picnic or just listen to the music and meet other NFA members. Whatever your seating options, come and find us after the concert to socialize. Learn more at

Participatory Events

There are many opportunities to take part in this year's convention, from the traditional opening flute choir to multiple reading sessions to workshops on topics ranging from historic flutes to new media.

Catherine Miller 1

— 50th Anniversary Committee Chair Catherine Miller


A note from the Chair of the 50th Anniversary Committee

"In support of the upcoming Golden Anniversary Convention, a 50th Anniversary Committee was established. Our committee formed several years ago to function as a think tank and resource for Aaron Goldman in his role as Program Chair and for the organization.


I would like to acknowledge my cohort of committee members for their dedication of time, creative ideas, and love of the NFA which was clearly demonstrated in their actions and conversations. If you have a chance, please let them know how much they are appreciated!

  • Ali Ryerson
  • Angeleita Floyd
  • David Houston
  • Jennifer Grim
  • Jill Felber
  • Jonathan Keeble
  • Katherine Emeneth
  • Katherine Borst Jones
  • Nancy Toff
  • Patti Adams
  • Rebecca Johnson
  • Zart Dombourian-Eby

Special thanks to Aaron Goldman for his leadership and vision for what will most definitely be an exciting and memorable convention. Looking forward to seeing everyone in Chicago—we have SO MUCH to celebrate together!"


Powerful Pieces by Talented Composers

Performances will feature a range of powerful works by talented composers of yesterday and today, including (pictured from left to right) Miguel del Aguila, Adolphus Hailstork, Jose Pablo Moncayo, and William Grant Still. Exciting premieres of new works include a major NFA-commissioned new flute concerto by Jennifer Higdon, an NFA-commissioned orchestration of Thea Musgrave’s 'Piccolo Play' for piccolo and string orchestra, a piece for the Inaugural NFA LGBTQ+ Flute Choir Celebration by Arturo Rodriguez, Chicago composer James Stephenson’s work for flute/alto flute and piano, and a mass flute ensemble piece by Judy Nishimura.

Golden Anniversary Awards

On Saturday evening, a 50th birthday bash will highlight the important work of the winners of the Golden Anniversary Awards.

More Info

Mass Performance of NFA Commission 'Oxygen'

Originally written for twelve flutes, Julia Wolfe's rapid-fire composition is being performed by twelve different flute ensembles around the world in the lead-up to this summer, when they’ll come together to premiere her full, 144-flute version, conducted by Lifetime Achievement Award honoree Ransom Wilson.

Historic Flutes

Treat yourself to an exciting lineup of historic flute programming, including a historic flute gala, a workshop on getting started on baroque flute, talks on the evolution of flute from the Renaissance to today, and a historic flutes room where you can see instruments up close, ask questions, and even bring in an old flute of your own for an expert to look at.

Food for the Day's Journey

Enjoy breakfast and a conversation with accomplished soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player Julietta Curenton. She will discuss turning points in her career that led to her focus on marginalized music and compositions. Support provided by Altus Handmade Flutes.

Orchestra Flute Sections

See Cincinnati Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, and Houston Symphony flute sections in concert.

Flute Lovers' Lunch

Join us for lunch and conversation hosted by featured performer Marina Piccinini. She will discuss her multifaceted career performing, teaching, and commissioning new works.