More Than Just a Flute

From nerve wracking auditions to performing up on stage, Selam Asfaw (11) is a flutist at Heritage High School and is a part of the band program. She started playing music when she was in seventh grade and has carried her passion into high school.
As a growing musician, Asfaw has taken giant leaps in her music career. From middle to high school she has progressed into more advanced ensembles, challenging her skills more and more.
Asfaw’s journey started in middle school where her teacher introduced her to the band program.
“I asked Ms. Kellogg if there was space in the band and she told me to listen in and tell her which sound was most interesting to me,” stated Asfaw.
Soon after, Asfaw’s career as a flutist arose. She is self taught and received constant feedback from her middle school music teacher, learning only from school instruction and method books.
“It was hours and hours on Youtube and my music instructor gave me books so I could understand technique,” said Asfaw.
Becoming a flutist is not easy as it requires special and specific techniques in order to produce the correct notes. Asfaw has to nail down embouchure, which is placement and shape of the lips on her flute to play her instrument correctly. If done wrong, it can result in restricted sound and inaccurate pitch.
At the Heritage Band Program, she is currently in Wind Ensemble which is a selective group that allows members in by audition only. It is known to be one of the hardest ensembles to be allowed into at the school.
Asfaw passed her audition for Wind Ensemble at the end of Sophomore year where they are usually held to select those for the next upcoming year. Thrilled, she tells about how being in the new group has set her at new heights as a flutist.
“It’s definitely motivated me more because in Wind Ensemble, everyone is always trying to further their musicianship and it’s like a friendly competition among us all,” stated Asfaw.
As this progression in the past year has been set upon her, Asfaw has been more motivated than ever to better herself and to keep pushing with everyone else. Not only is she just a performer on the stage but a passionate and hardworking musician constantly ready to take new leaps.