Choctaw artist Presley Byington will present a flute making workshop March 17, from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm, at the Museum of the Red River. Cost is $45, and all supplies are provided. The class will break at noon for a potluck lunch and resume at 1:00 pm. This class is capped at 10 people; interested individuals must pre register by calling(580) 286 – 3616 or online.
Byington, an Idabel-native, is an accomplished Choctaw dancer, flute player, and flute maker. He has performed across the nation, including at the Choctaw Days Festival at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. Christina Eastep, Head of Programs, noted “Presley has shared his talents with the Museum for many years and his workshops are always well-attended.”
Flutes have played, and continue to play, an important role in traditional native American culture. Early native American chiefs used them to welcome guests or while holding court. Flutes were also played during sporting events, on the battlefield and by medicine men. Today, flutes are usually considered a key part of native American art. They’re also used in important ceremonies and tribal functions.