Maria's flute tone is described by audiences as being beautiful, warm, soulful and rich. She plays with intense musicality and passion with a discerning sensitivity for both the music and her audience. Her piccolo playing shows the same musicality and rich tone, making for a pleasing performance that is applauded by both the audience and her fellow musicians within the orchestra.
Maria began playing the flute at age nine and immediately became very active in various music groups and solo performances. Three years later she was invited to perform at the National Flute Association Convention to demonstrate E.F. Dean flutes, performing both for their clinic and at the E.F. Dean booth. She won a spot in the Bakersfield Youth Symphony at age thirteen, began playing regularly with the Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra at age sixteen, and also began giving flute lessons that same year.
Maria has won several scholarship awards and solo competitions and has also been invited often to perform at clinics, demonstrations and in other settings. She has performed live on both radio and television broadcasts. Her preferred musical setting is the orchestral one and she has performed with numerous orchestras, both as a soloist and as principal flute. She often performs on the piccolo and alto flute as well. She has also performed in the premiering and recording of several works. Her performance venues have been varied and include the Walt Disney Concert Hall, playing principal flute.
Currently, Maria is on faculty at Thayer Performing Arts Center in Lancaster, MA, where she teaches flute, directs two flute choirs, teaches a preschool music class, and offers music therapy sessions as well as adaptive music lessons. Maria also performs with chamber and orchestral groups in Massachusetts including the Concord Orchestra and the Brockton Symphony.
Before her recent relocation to Central Massachusetts Maria was highly active in several music ensembles in Southern California. She played piccolo with the Peninsula Symphony, Culver City Symphony, the Marina del Rey Summer Symphony and the Carson City Symphony and often performed principal flute with these and various other orchestras. Maria was the principal/solo alto for the Song of the Angels Flute Choir, also playing piccolo when necessary. She performed professionally on a regular basis throughout the LA County as well as traveling to other areas throughout California. Maria is also a member of Sigma Alpha Iota, a National Music Fraternity dedicated to encouraging music education and performance throughout the world. In addition to performing on flute/piccolo/alto flute, Maria is also a board-certified music therapist and works with both individuals and groups, specializing in psychiatric illnesses and developmental disabilities.
Maria performs on a Muramatsu heavy wall DS model flute with a Powell 14k Aurumite headjoint; her piccolo is a 650/4 Hammig with modified wave headjoint; and she plays a Sonare AF60 alto flute with solid silver Powell headjoint.
Maria holds a bachelor's degree in Music Therapy from California State University Northridge and is completing her Master's in Music Therapy (emphasis in music technology) at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). She is a board certified music therapist.
Private Instructors: David Shostac (Principal Flute, LACO), Tracy Harris (Yamaha Performing Artist); Nancy Ayala (Principal Flute, BSO); Teresa Beaman (Flute Instructor, CSUF); Darla Pumphrey; and Ellen Shirley.
Masterclasses Performed In: Susan Milan, Tadeu Coelho, Heather Clarke and Tracy Harris
Orchestral Experience: Brockton Symphony, Concord Orchestra, Symphony Pro Musica, Culver City Symphony (Piccolo, Principal Flute), Marina Del Rey Summer Symphony (Piccolo),; Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra (1st and 2nd flute, picc), Tulare County Symphony Orchestra (Flute, Piccolo), Palos Verdes/Peninsula Symphony (Flute), Carson City Symphony (Piccolo), Bakersfield Youth Symphony Orchestra (Co-Principal, Piccolo), New England Youth Ensemble, Kern County Honor Orchestra (Principal), Bakersfield and Fresno City College Chamber Orchestras (Principal)
Other Ensemble Experience: Song of the Angels Flute Choir (Principal Alto and Piccolo), CSUF Wind Ensemble (Principal); CSUN Wind Ensemble (Principal); Intercollegiate Honor Band (Principal and Piccolo); FPU Wind Ensemble (Principal); CSUB Wind Ensemble; Silver Winds Flute Choir (Principal); NFA Invitational Flute Choir; Various Church Orchestras/Ensembles and chamber groups.
Full Concerto Performances With Orchestra: Vivaldi Concerto in F Major, Mozart Concerto in D Major, Kennan Night Soliloquy, Vivaldi Piccolo Concerto in C Major, Borne Carmen Fantasy
Awards: Concerto Performance at CSUF, 1st place Yamaha Competition Three Rivers Flute Masterclass, Bakersfield Youth Symphony Concerto Competition, Tehachapi Symphony Young Artist Concerto Competition, Second Prize Bakersfield Symphony Young Musician Scholarship Competition, Tim Hosking Scholarship, Various performance scholarships