“I am riveted by (Clayton’s) performances….they are among the most intense musical experiences of my life – breathtaking. Her musicianship is such that she could play something from the phone book and make it sound like a masterpiece.”
~ Murray Boren, composer
Performing and teaching internationally
April has performed as soloist and chamber artist in London, Zurich, Paris, Riva del Garda, Leipzig, Moscow, Vancouver, New York City, and throughout South Korea, Mexico and the United States.
For seven years, she served as director of chamber music for the European American Musical Alliance, working in Paris alongside members of the faculty of Juilliard, the Paris Conservatory and Ecole Normale de Musique, and other elite schools. She now continues her international performance and educational endeavors each summer through the Da Capo Alliance, a nonprofit educational organization she founded in 2012.
Award-winning soloist and recording artist
April presented her 2003 debut solo recital in New York’s Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall as a winner of the Artists’ International Competition. She has performed as concerto soloist with several orchestras in Utah, Ohio, New York, New Jersey, and Colorado.
Her debut solo CD, Flûte Agréable, was released on the Crystal Records label in 2005. Her most recent solo CD is Flute Horizons, a collaboration with the BYU Chamber Orchestra.
As a young flutist, April won many competitions, including the Jefferson Symphony Young Artist, MTNA and Cincinnati Philharmonia Concerto Competition.
Chosen performer for premieres of new music
A dedicated performer of new music, April has participated in numerous world premieres. Flute Horizons features two new concertos written for her by Todd Coleman and Murray Boren. In 2008, she presented by invitation a highly acclaimed concert of premieres at Carnegie Hall.
Among four competition prizes received from the National Flute Association are two “Best Performance” awards for renditions of newly commissioned compositions. April received a Full Fellowship to the Aspen Music Festival as flutist with the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble. She toured internationally with the New Juilliard Ensemble, has performed in the Summergarden Concert Series at the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan, and in Lincoln Center’s Focus! Festival for New Music.
Integral member of musical groups
April is a member of the Orpheus Wind Quintet, a leading woodwind quintet in the Intermountain West. She often works with dynamic piano duo partner Jed Moss of Salt Lake City, who was formerly a member of the band Air Supply. She also plays with the New York-based flute, viola and harp trio Hat Trick.
She has been principal flute with the Utah Chamber Artists since 2005, and often performs with Ballet West and the Utah Symphony. She has toured as a guest with the New York Woodwind Quintet.
Formerly principal flute and concerto soloist with the New York Lyric Orchestra, April also played principal flute with The Jupiter Symphony, the National Repertory Orchestra, and at the Sarasota Music Festival.
Recognized student becomes honored professor
A professor of flute at Brigham Young University, April received tenure at age 31. In 2010, she garnered a coveted Brigham Young University Young Scholar Award, becoming only the second music faculty winner in its decades-long history. Presented to young BYU faculty, the award includes three years of generous grants and stipends.
April studied flute performance and mathematics as a National Merit Scholar at Oberlin College and Conservatory. She subsequently graduated with her BM (summa cum laude) and MM degrees from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. At The Juilliard School, she was a Starr Doctoral Fellow and the youngest student to have been admitted to the DMA program. She is a member of American Mensa.
Students garner recognition, move into valued positions
April’s students lay claim to many honors, awards, and professional positions. Several have won National Flute Association competitions, including the Flute and Piccolo Masterclass competitions and the Orchestra Audition Competition and Masterclass (first place). They have placed in other state, regional, and national competitions, including the Utah Flute Association, Music Teachers’ National Association, San Francisco Flute Festival, and Areon Flute Festival.
Her students have been accepted into top undergraduate and graduate music programs, including those at Arizona State University, Boston Conservatory, Boston University, Brigham Young University, Colburn, University of Colorado at Boulder and Denver, University of Michigan, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, University of North Texas, Rutgers, and University of Southern California.
April’s former students now teach at BYU-Idaho, Michigan State University, and Boston University. They have performed with orchestras including the Tucson Symphony, Utah Symphony, Portland Ensign Orchestra, Salt Lake Symphony, Utah Valley Symphony, and Orchestra at Temple Square. Many maintain their own private studios across the country, and are leaders in their music communities.