GREAT FALLS — Great Falls Symphony flutist Norman Manzales is turning a life-long dream into reality. His sights are set on creating an album that captures the essence of his Filipino culture and combining it with a modern, classical twist.
“The project is called 'The Sampaguita Filipino Flute Recording Project' and it’s just about representation into my culture and putting a modern flare to it,” Norman explained.
In total, the project will cost $26,000 for Norman to record. After receiving a $10,000 dollar ARPA grant and raising nearly $10,000 dollars in donations, Norman is just $6,000 away from making his dream a reality. “I’m so close and I would of course love to raise the money sooner rather than later. I’m just so grateful for everyone who believes in me and my vision and who are willing to help.”
Norman went onto explain his journey in making the decision to record an album. As a long-time flutist since his elementary school days, his passion for the instrument and respect for his Filipino culture helped him gather the courage. After further contemplation during the pandemic, Norman said it was easy. “I’ve had people come up to me and tell me that I should make an album and I would laugh, not really taking it seriously.” He spoke.
“You know, it was so easy during that time to, like, just go on the internet and go down this rabbit hole. And one of those rabbit holes just took me into this YouTube playlist of Filipino classical music, and I discovered, like, out of all of the pieces that were on, there were like 216 videos. There was one video that had a flute, and I was just thinking, this is what I need to do. I need to add to this.”
He hopes to inspire other young musicians to take the leap of faith and try new things: “For me, I'm just hoping it's just the beginning. Like, I don't see this as the end all, be all. I know that there's going to be opportunities to create more new music, hopefully inspired by, you know, what they may listen to on this album. If they do find that inspiration wonderful and like, I feel like I've done my job, you know, so it has to start somewhere and why not me?”
If you would like to donate to Norman’s project, you can do so by clicking here.
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