Classical Musicians and Their Instruments
Photo Essay by Bret Brookshire
Megan MeisenbachFlutist Megan Meisenbach has toured throughout the United States, Mexico, and Europe and, since 1976, has also performed with harpist Mary Golden as a flute-and-harp duo. Their CD Debussy -- Ravel -- Bax features English and French Impressionistic chamber music for flute, harp, and strings. She also teaches at the Austin Chamber Music Center.
Meisenbach's instrument is, in a sense, a gift from the flutist's grandmother. Karen Iversen Madsen left her native Copenhagen in 1910, journeying alone on a ship to Ellis Island, then moving to Racine, Wisconsin. When she died, she left an inheritance for her granddaughter, Megan, to be used as she pleased. With the bequest from her bestemor ("grandmother" in Danish), Meisenbach purchased a 9k gold flute made by John Lehner of Sydney, Australia. The crown is made of mulga wood, a wood found only in Australia, and the keys and lip plate are engraved.
"I chose the flute at a National Flute Association Convention in St. Louis where hundreds of flutes are displayed. It seemed that the notes hung in the air longer with this flute than with all the other flutes I tried."