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Alumni World

Dianne Frank Williams ’96 - Expressing herself through music

Flutist Dianne Frank Williams has made a career out of her passion for music.
“The flute is the way I express myself,” said Williams, who earned her B.M. in performance and her B.A. in English. “It is my paintbrush. It is my pen. I can communicate with people on a much deeper level than words alone.”

Williams, who began her freshman year as a pre-med major, quickly changed her major to follow her love of music. “I performed all the time, sometimes twice a week,” said Williams, who studied under Thomas Ken-nedy, associate professor of music and the conductor of the Wittenberg Symphonic Band and the Chamber Orchestra. Williams played the flute in the Wittenberg orchestra, Symphonic Band, woodwind quintet, flute choir and theatre department orchestra pits. She also accompanied the handbell choir on numerous occasions.

“Dr. Kennedy was very focused on making sure that I received excellent training,” she said.

Following her graduation, Williams worked for three years in marketing and advertising. She credits Richard Veler, professor emeritus of English and adjunct instructor of English, with helping her develop her writing skills.

Three years after leaving Wittenberg, Williams desire to pursue her passion for music was awakened with a new flute. She was awarded a full-tuition scholarship to the University of Akron in 1999, the year she married her husband, Andrew Williams. She earned her master’s in music performance within a year and was inducted into the national music honor society, Pi Kappa Lambda. She won two competitions, which enabled her to perform for well-known piccolo player Jack Wellbaum and world-renowned flutist Paula Robinson.

Today, Williams operates a studio in East Sparta, Ohio, teaching more than 20 flute students. She performs regularly in featured solo concerts throughout Ohio. Williams is also an associate flutist and piccolo player with several
professional symphony orchestras throughout Ohio including Columbus, Akron and Canton. In West Virginia, she has played with the Wheeling Symphony.

In addition, Williams has also released two albums. Her debut album, Simplicity, includes many of her favorite melodies including “Amazing Grace,” “Clair de Lune” and “Ave Maria.” Her second solo album, Tinsel, features such holiday melodies as “Silent Night” and “A Nutcracker Dance Suite.”

— Heather Maurer


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