"Every student learns differently and has different motivations for playing. I try to balance structure and technique without losing sight of how enjoyable it is to play music."
Kaoru Hinata was born in Champaign, Illinois but growing up her family lived all over the United States, including Massachusetts, New Mexico and Alabama. She began playing flute in the seventh grade, having already studied piano for many years. "I started piano at age 5 but later fell in love with how a flute looked and sounded. Also, I wanted to play music in school and with other people, so I started to play flute in junior high school band."
After studying at Yale University, Kaoru moved to New York. "It was a dream of mine to live and work in New York City-it's an incredibly inspiring place to be." At Bloomingdale, Kaoru teaches students of all ages, nine and older. She tailors her teaching to each individual. "Every student learns differently and has different motivations for playing. I try to balance structure and technique without losing sight of how enjoyable it is to play music."
Kaoru has many adult students in her studio who work with her both privately and in ensembles. "I enjoy my adult students. They are very engaged and interesting people. Our work together can be demanding or relaxed or somewhere in between, depending on what the student would like to get out of the experience."
A frequent performer, Kaoru can often be heard in concert at Bloomingdale with the Circadia ensemble and in solo recital. She credits her teachers for their influence on her "both as musicians and as role models for living life as an artist. I've been lucky to have teachers who are extraordinary musicians and performers."
A faculty member at Bloomingdale for 14 years, Kaoru has particularly enjoyed watching her younger students grow up. "I feel aware that it is a transient and special time of their life, when they are especially open to learning and are in the process of becoming themselves. I enjoy learning about them and watching them change over time." In her tenure at Bloomingdale Kaoru has taught many serious young flutists, particularly those who have been students in the MAP program. "For the students who make studying music a regular part of their lives, I enjoy watching the pride they take in their accomplishments and in our work together."