Hoover Masks for Flute and Piano


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Hoover Masks for Flute and Piano

Hoover Masks for Flute and Piano

Publisher-Papagena Press

Katherine Hoover’s Program Notes

” When asked to write a piece for the National Flute Convention in Phoenix, I envisioned a piece comprising several short movements. The idea of MASKS appealed to me, for a mask generally makes an impression quickly; its effect is clear at a glance. I have collected several masks over the years and looked at many more in museums and art books of various kinds.

Three of these movements reflect particular masks that I have seen, one is a generic type, and two are waiting to be constructed.


 I A Haida (Northwest Native American) mask, of commanding presence
II a Huichol (Mexican Native) Jaguar mask, completely beaded with intricate flower patterns; and III, an African American death mask of great calmness.
IV is a clown mask, and the last two are left entirely to your imagination.”

Katherine Hoover

Katherine Hoover (1937-2018) was a freelance flautist in New York City, teacher, entrepreneur, poet, and distinguished composer, with a career spanning over 50 years.

Hoover displayed musical talent at an early age, learning to read music before words and beginning piano and flute lessons. She pursued her academic studies at the University of Rochester and later attended the Yale Summer Sessions, studying flute, theory, and composition. She also studied with flautist William Kincaid, who became her mentor.

Hoover taught flute at various schools and eventually became a faculty member at the Manhattan School of Music for seventeen years, where she also completed her Master of Music in Music Theory. Later, she joined the faculty of Teachers College, Columbia University.

Her career as a composer began in the 1970s, at a time when few women composers were recognised in classical music. She composed a wide range of works, including pieces for solo flute, mixed ensembles, chamber orchestra, acapella choir, and full orchestra, often incorporating Native American themes.

Katherine co-founded Papagena Press in 1988, and their catalogue proudly features 90 individual titles of her compositions. Many of these works also include intriguing rearrangements, showcasing her creativity and versatility as a composer. Her music has also been published by Theodore Presser, Carl Fischer, and and her works have been recorded by various labels.

She passed away at the age of 80 on the 21st of September 2018. Throughout her life, Katherine received numerous accolades, including the National Flute Association’s 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award, a National Endowment Composer’s Fellowship, and the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Letters Academy Award in Composition in 1994.


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