Margaret Cornils Luke has never been known to follow the normal path of an artist. Beginning with piano at the age of five and flute at the age of seven, Cornils Luke has carved out her own original journey utilizing not only her flute skills, but her piano and compositional skills as well. Becoming a sought-after accompanist as well as a recorded and published composer has helped round out Margaret the flutist.
Margaret was first inspired by Jeanne-Pierre Rampal after hearing him perform live several times. She knew from that early age she wanted to make music and the flute her life, and was urged on by scholarships she received to attend Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. Margaret won the coveted Concerto Competition when she was just a sophomore, and also performed on stage with the likes of Isaac Stern and Mstislav Rostropovich during these years. She was also asked to return to Northern Illinois University on full scholarship, where she received her master’s degree in Music Performance, and several years later she began her doctoral studies at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. However, performing and teaching at the college level would take Margaret away from pursuing her degree, and she was also strongly urged to “give up college all together” by one of her private teachers, famous British flutist Geoffrey Gilbert, and “go out and just play the flute.”
Margaret has done just that, having performed seven solo recitals at Carnegie Hall in New York City, and having made her international debut at Cadogan Hall in London in October 2015. She has performed at the National Flute Convention, held annually by the National Flute Association, and has judged their International Young Artist Competition for several years, being the youngest of their esteemed jurists. During her performances, Margaret has performed her own works and new works of others, and has played with numerous musicians during this time, including performing solo with many different orchestras and wind ensembles, such as her performance of “Pandean Fable” by Clifton Williams, which was favorably reviewed by National Public Radio and others worldwide. In addition to performing multiple times on the National Public Radio program “Live From The Chazen”, Margaret has also been featured on National Public Radio via WXPN AM in Philadelphia, been a guest star of National Public Radio’s Garrison Keillor, and has performed on National Public Television. She also has a new flute competition named after her: Click here to catch the news on the CedarLuke Young Artist Flute Competition on the Montana Flute Association website!
In order to bring a new and interesting repertoire to the forefront of her efforts, Margaret is currently promoting and commissioning many new works, such as “Fluting Around” by famous Mohican composer Brent Michael Davids. In this 25 minutes long creation, Margaret plays both the modern flute and two Native American flutes, which provides a new and unique adventure for the concert goer. She also has commissioned works by famous U.S. composers Gary Schocker and Michael Gilbertson, and is busy with her own commissions. Her first flute sonata will premiere in April 2017 at the Merkin Concert Hall in the Kaufman Music Center in New York City. In addition to performing, she is also a published and recorded composer and loves to write for flute, piano and voice. She has just completed a commission for the vocal group Perfect Harmony, which is celebrating their 20th anniversary as a group, and her works are available for purchase on SheetMusicPlus.com.
Margaret has also recorded several CDs and has a new CD, Favorite Flute Masterpieces, coming out on March 3, 2017 under the Centaur music label, featuring Maestro Christopher Petrie and the Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra of London! Catch the details on this site!
In addition to performing, composing, and more, Margaret has taught at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville; in St. Paul, Minnesota at Hamline University, Concordia University, and College of St. Catherine; Loras College and Clarke University in Dubuque, Iowa; and has performed and attended many masterclasses all over the US. Her flute teachers include Geoffrey Gilbert, Charles Delaney, Jacob Berg, Tadeu Coelho, Mary Louise Poor, Gale Coffee, and Peter Middleton.
Margaret has also founded a new chamber music group comprised of violin, cello, clarinet, flute and piano called Spill Your Beans! You can find out more about the group here Margaret is also an avid photographer and has her own shop that sells her work in both canvas, metal and clothing form. You can purchase her work off this site or come to her shop CedarLukeArts in downtown Cedar Falls, Iowa.
“All in all, a remarkable success.”
-Robert Matthew-Walker for the “British Musical Opinion”
“A packed Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, greeted flutist Margaret Cornils Luke. Her phrasing in the Poulenc Sonata, in the opening of the Cantilena was pure perfection, and the last movement (presto giocoso) displayed an impressive third-octave technique and clear double-tonguing. The virtuosic variations of the Genin, Carnival of Venice exploited all the tricks up the flutist’s sleeve. Cornils was up to the challenge and the audience rewarded her with a standing ovation.”
-Barrett Cobb for “New York Concert Review”