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Myrna Brown International Scholarship

The Myrna Brown International Scholarship was established to honor Myrna Brown, the NFA’s first executive director, for her dedication to the National Flute Association. As an administrator, Brown encouraged collegiality and was a passionate advocate for cultural exchanges through music. During her tenure, Brown organized the first exchanges with flutists from China and Russia, setting the stage for the NFA’s warm relations with international flutists.  
In memory of Myrna Brown, this biennial scholarship provides financial assistance to a flutist from another country to attend and present at the National Flute Association Convention, the largest annual flute event in the world. Recipients gain the opportunity to share their unique musical perspectives and experiences with a diverse group of flutists, promoting an enriching, cross-cultural dialogue.

The recipient of the Myrna Brown Scholarship will receive $3,000. In addition to the scholarship, the recipient will be awarded a complimentary pass to attend the 49th Annual Convention in Washington, D.C., August 12-15, 2021, and a one-year membership in the NFA.

Eligibility Requirements

To be considered for the Myrna Brown International Scholarship, the applicant must:
  1. Be a citizen of, and actually residing in, a developing country that is not under trade sanctions or restrictions with the United States OR be a person from a developing country who, within the last two years, has been forced to leave his or her home country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster and is currently living outside the United States.
  2. Not be a previous winner of the Myrna Brown International Scholarship, or related to any member of the Myrna Brown International Scholarship Committee.
  3. Demonstrate personal economic need, defined as the inability to attend the NFA Convention without financial assistance.

Application Requirements

To apply for the Myrna Brown International Scholarship, the applicant must submit the following materials by the deadline using the form below:

  1. A biography or résumé in English not exceeding two pages, including the applicant's full legal name, date and place of birth, current residence address and residence addresses during the past five years, contact information including E-mail address, citizenship, education, and (if applicable) professional or occupational information.
  2. A written statement in English not exceeding 300 words describing: (a) why attending the NFA convention will benefit the applicant's musical development, and (b) how the applicant will utilize the experience of attending the NFA convention to further the development of flute music in the applicant's home country.
  3. A written proposal in English not exceeding 750 words outlining the 30- to 45-minute presentation that the applicant proposes to make at the NFA convention. The presentation must consist of or strongly relate to flute music. Examples of possible presentations include: a program of flute music from the applicant's country; a presentation on a specific composer or several composers performing examples of their works; a presentation on innovative teaching ideas or methods; or a presentation on a significant historical perspective of music from the applicant's country.
  4. A video and audio recording of the applicant performing one or more selections of flute music for a minimum of 15 minutes, recorded not more than 90 days before submission of the recording. Note: The recording technology used does not need to be of professional quality; a typical hand-held digital recording is acceptable. Applicants are not expected or encouraged to spend any significant sum in creating the audio-video recording. If the proposed presentation includes performances of flute music, each part of the repertoire to be performed must be included. If the proposed presentation does not include a performance of flute music, the recording must include a flute performance by the applicant of two or more pieces from the standard solo repertoire. 

“My having grown up on the dusty streets of Soweto and then gone on to become the first African to win this competition gave hope to a lot of South Africans. Since the news broke, I have been featured in Cosmopolitan magazine; South Africa’s papers News24 and the Sunday Times; Music in Africa, and the global online newspaper Worldwide News; and was named as one of the top 200 young South Africans by the U.K.’s Mail and Guardian newspapers. I have also been interviewed on Classic FM and on ENCA news channel’s breakfast show. I had no idea when I applied that my winning would have such a huge impact.

When the audience gave us a standing ovation at the end of the concert, it was definitely a moment I will cherish for the rest of my career. I hope more flutists will incorporate South African flute music into their repertoire, as these works are both challenging and gorgeous.

Attending and performing at the NFA convention was a highlight experience and one I will treasure for a lifetime. I met and heard some of my all-time favorite flute players, including Susan Milan, Hélène Boulege, and Valerie Coleman.

The lectures and panel discussions were also amazing, and I learned a lot of things I can apply to my teaching and performing. Most valuable of all was the spirit of camaraderie and positivity that I felt from all the flute players I met during the convention in Salt Lake City.

I left the convention feeling like a better person.”

—2019 Myrna Brown International Scholarship recipient Khanyisile Mthetwa, South Africa

MB_Khanyi Mthetwa closer

Submission Information

Submit the materials described using the form below. Before uploading your application materials, rename all electronic files so they begin with your name (example: John Doe Filename).

The Myrna Brown International Scholarship is on a two-year scholarship cycle and will be awarded in even years for attendance at NFA conventions in odd years. The deadline for receipt of all application material is December 1 of the year before the convention at which the winner will perform. For the 2021 NFA Convention, the deadline is December 1, 2020. Applications not received in complete form by the deadline will be disqualified.

Evaluation Criteria

Assuming that the applicant meets the threshold criteria specified in "Eligibility Requirements" above, applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  1. The potential for future positive impact on the development of flute music in the applicant's home country as a result of the applicant's participation in the NFA convention (50% of total evaluation); and

  2. The applicant's ability to present in lecture or performance format at the NFA convention or to serve as a competition judge, as applicable (50% of total evaluation).

Requirements for Myrna Brown Scholarship Recipient

By submitting an application for the Myrna Brown International Scholarship, the applicant agrees that if selected:

  1. The Myrna Brown Scholarship Flutist will attend at least three full days of the NFA Convention in the year of the scholarship.
  2. The Myrna Brown Scholarship Flutist will make a 30- to 45-minute presentation to the NFA Convention which must include the elements described in the proposal submitted pursuant to Paragraph 3 of the Application Requirements
  3. Within two weeks after the close of the NFA Convention, the Myrna Brown Scholarship Flutist will participate in a post-convention interview by a writer for The Flutist Quarterly. The subject matter of the interview will be the Myrna Brown Scholarship Flutist's experiences at the NFA Convention, how such experiences have influenced and will influence his or her musical life, and how the Myrna Brown Scholarship Flutist will share information with his or her country's flute community regarding the activities and services of the NFA.
  4. The Myrna Brown Scholarship Flutist consents to the use of his or her name, photograph, and personal information stated in the application materials (except financial information) and/or disclosed in the interview, in publications of the NFA, including but not limited to the NFA Convention program, The Flutist Quarterly, and the NFA website.

Funding of Scholarship

The Myrna Brown International Scholarship is funded solely by the NFA Endowment Myrna Brown Fund.