Shenandoah Conservatory announces Sarah Howard-Carter ’01 (Bachelor of Music in Performance) as its honored guest and speaker for the 2020/21 Conservatory Convocation at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 26. Each year, Conservatory Convocation welcomes incoming and returning conservatory students with a dynamic lineup of music, theatre and dance performances showcasing the conservatory’s extraordinary student artists. Instead of one large event, this year’s Convocation will be held virtually with smaller in-person watch parties grouped by division. The event will feature a special keynote address by Howard-Carter.
Howard-Carter is known as “The Lifting Flutist.” She currently serves with The United States Air Forces in Europe Band at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. She graduated from Shenandoah Conservatory in 2001 with a Bachelor of Music in Performance (Flute) and went on to obtain a Master of Music in Flute Performance from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in 2004.
While at Shenandoah, Howard-Carter performed as principal flutist in several ensembles including the Shenandoah Conservatory Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble and Woodwind Quintet. She also served as student government association president her senior year. In 2002, she was accepted to the University of Tennessee with a graduate teaching assistantship for flute performance. In 2003, she performed as flute soloist with the University Wind Ensemble at Carnegie Hall. While living in Tennessee, she was principal flute and soloist with the Oak Ridge Symphony Orchestra and was also conductor of the Grace Notes flute choir in Maryville, Tennessee.
Howard-Carter began her Air Force career in 2006 with The Band of the U.S. Air Force Reserve in Warner Robins, Georgia. While there, she participated in tours with the Force Five! woodwind quintet as musical director and operations representative, premiering new works for the ensemble and completing two tours to Puerto Rico. During her tenure, the quintet was invited to perform in New York with the Grammy-nominated woodwind quintet Imani Winds. She has performed with artists such as Wynonna Judd, Take 6, Amy Grant, Aaron Neville, Lonestar, Little Big Town and countless others. In 2010, Howard-Carter premiered the new arrangement of “Concerto for Flute and Wind Orchestra” by Mike Mower on an annual tour with the band. She also performed the concerto in Puerto Rico and was featured on DoDLive, a joint services blog that reaches over a million service personnel worldwide. As a civilian, Howard-Carter actively worked with the Macon Symphony Youth Orchestra as a woodwind coach. She also performed as a substitute with the Macon Symphony, Augusta Symphony and Savannah Philharmonic.
In 2013 Howard-Carter was transferred to The Heritage of American Band at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. There, she was active in the community as a teacher and performer working as a substitute with the Virginia Symphony and playing with various chamber ensembles. It was there that she became “The Lifting Flutist” after a video of her playing flute and lifting weights went viral. Since then, Howard-Carter has used this platform to not only inspire musicians and athletes, but to lecture about the parallels between the two.
She currently is a member of the United States Air Forces in Europe Band (USAFEB) and travels and performs throughout Europe and Africa. Howard-Carter has performed as a soloist and vocalist with the USAFEB. In 2016, she performed with the Croatian national military band as a soloist and has toured Slovenia, Cote D’Ivoire, Lithuania, Estonia and countless other countries. Howard-Carter serves as a resiliency trainer and is also an accomplished CrossFit athlete and coach. As “The Lifting Flutist,” she continues to inspire through teaching, coaching and performing.