Carol Hester Performs on Flute

Professor of Music Carol Hester performed in the Noble Recital Hall as a part of the Faculty Artist Series on September 30. Photo courtesy of

On Friday, September 30, Luther’s music department kicked off the 2022-2023 Faculty Artist Series with a performance by Professor of Music Carol Hester. She performed on the flute in the Noble Recital Hall for her one-hour performance, and was later joined by Professor of Music Du Huang on piano and Adjunct Faculty in Music Amy Nam on harp.   


Hester, accompanied by Nam, began with “Sonata for Flute and Harp in Eb Major” by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges. Hester noted that the composition wasn’t previously known to her and that she discovered it during the COVID shut down of 2020, when she had extra time for musical exploration. Huang then joined Hester with his piano accompaniment for the last three pieces of the night, starting with “Sonata in G Major for Flute and Piano, after Hob. III:81” by Franz Joseph Haydn. Hester commented on the quality of Huang’s accompaniment. 


“Sometimes the piano part is just as hard as the flute part,” Hester said. “It’s pretty amazing to hear what he’s done.” 


Following the Haydn composition, Hester and Huang performed “Orange Dawn for Flute and Piano” by Ian Clarke. Projected behind the performers was a painting of a sunrise done by Hester’s sister, Gwen Hester Stephens. Leen Zaher (‘26) attended the recital and reflected on how the song influenced her emotions. 


“Music makes me more aware of my feelings,” Zaher said. “If I am sad or happy, it would reveal those feelings depending on the song. Orange Dawn made me feel relaxed and calm, but [in] some parts, I felt anxious and overwhelmed.”


To conclude the recital, Hester and Huang performed “Blue Ridge Airs II for Flute and Piano” by Kenneth Frazelle. The piece, one part of a series of works, uses elements of traditional southern folk music. Hester, who grew up in northern Alabama, explained that she has a special connection to the piece because of its Southern style and use of common regional bird calls. 


“Blue Ridge Airs II for Flute and Piano” was a highlight of the night for audience member Nagham Boulos (‘26). Boulos points to the nostalgia she felt while listening. 


“It was on another level of greatness, [and it] put me in such a good mood,” Boulos said. “It sounds like something you would hear in Disney [movies], which sounds so nostalgic. [The song] showed me the power of music and how it connects us to different times.”


The Faculty Artist Series will be back on October 22 with the Luther College Piano Quartet. The performance is at 2:00 p.m. in the Noble Recital Hall.