Dr. Jane Hoffman, Principal Flutist for the Pops Orchestra and Instructor of Flute at SCF, Joins the Club

Dr. Jane Hoffman, Principal Flutist for the Pops Orchestra and Instructor of Flute at SCF, Joins the Club

From California to Spain to Florida's Suncoast, from swimmer to skier to flute player, from community music school director to instructor of flute at SCF to principal flutist in the Pops Orchestra, Dr. Jane Hoffman has done it all and even some things in between!
Hear her unconventional journey to the world of flute playing and how she uses all her connections and experiences to enrich the musical lives of so many, including obtaining a grant from the Imre and Vera Hecht Foundation to support the annual "Camping with the Pops" summer camp for area student musicians.
Come along and join the club!

• Dr. Jane Hoffman Website & Facebook & Instagram

The Pops Orchestra of Bradenton and Sarasota Website & Facebook & Instagram

State College of Florida Music Program Website & Facebook & Instagram

Sarasota Opera Website & Facebook & Instagram

• Trader Joe’s Website & Instagram & YouTube

• Aldi Website & Facebook & Instagram & Twitter & YouTube

• Baker and Wife Restaurant Website & Facebook & Instagram

• Lido Key Beach Website

• Marie Selby Botanical Gardens and Historic Spanish Point Website & Facebook & Instagram & Twitter

• Evie’s on the Point Website & Facebook

Sarasota Orchestra Website & Facebook & Instagram & TwitterYouTube

• Asolo Repertory Theatre Website & Facebook & Instagram & YouTube

Support the show (https://scf-foundation.org/suncoastcultureclub/)


Robyn Bell: What a treat. It is going to be today to visit with someone who I get to make an awful lot of music with. She is our flute instructor at the State College of Florida, as well as the principal flute with the Pops Orchestra, she plays, you guessed it flute with Trio Voila, a flute, viola and guitar trio that plays many performances around town. She also teaches. All over the community for many different schools. In this past year, she was a tremendous asset to our SCF Symphonic Band. As she played flute and Piccolo on our Godzilla eats Las Vegas, April fool's day concert to which I will forever be indebted. And I bet there are. Thousand other things she does that I am so excited to hear about today. Dr. Jane Hoffman. Welcome to the club. 

Jane Hoffman: Hi, Dr. Bell. Nice to see you. 

Robyn Bell: Nice to see you too. 

Jane Hoffman: Thank you for having me. 

Robyn Bell: So, Jane, let's start with your story about what brought you to the Sarasota Bradenton area. I believe you're from the west coast of the United States. Is that correct? 

Jane Hoffman: Yes.

Robyn Bell: So tell us, how did you get started playing the flute and what eventually got you from one coast to the other as a flute player? 

Jane Hoffman: Well,  my first instrument was piano, so I got piano lessons when I was about five.

Robyn Bell: Okay. So you listened to this podcast a lot. And so you're probably going to know what I'm going to say, because I talked to a lot of instrumentalists that started on piano, and then they go to a, an instrument that's just one line and they go, oh, this is so easy. So you started playing piano when you were five. And then when did you get to the flute? 

Jane Hoffman: Well, then in like third grade we had recorder. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. Oh, I still own a recorder. 

Jane Hoffman: Oh, 

Robyn Bell: I do. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. And so I kind of felt that I had an aptitude for music and the piano teacher said, oh, she should continue with her lessons. We always had a baby grand piano in the house. My mom sang and played piano, but she didn't read music. So she played by ear and she played all the early like Cole Porter songs. And  she was a great singer and a good entertainer, but I didn't see that until much, much later in life with her second husband actually. So she played a lot of piano when nobody was around. In a way that was kind of her thing, but so the recorder. You know, after the fourth grade, fifth grade  I asked my dad if I could maybe play the flute. And I remember going to  the local music store, and I got a Gemeinhardt and 

Robyn Bell: that's a brand of flute. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. The Gemeinhardt flute 

Robyn Bell: Cause it sounds like a disease you would catch on the street or something. If you don't know, 

Jane Hoffman: they still make Gemeinhardt flutes. It's still pretty popular.   So I got the flute, the guy in the music store told me to play the head joint. Just the head joint. When you get all three pitches on the head joint, then learn all the notes on this page. 

Robyn Bell: Hmm, 

Jane Hoffman: and then you'll be ready to go. So that was the end of fifth grade going into sixth grade. Well, all the notes on that page was the entire chromatic scale from low C to high C. So basically three octaves, you know,  so, okay. I did it. And I played in the band in sixth grade. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. All right. Were you totally bored in beginning band since you already knew how to read music and now you already knew three octaves on the flute now?

Jane Hoffman: No, I wasn't. I don't remember being bored.  I barely even remember being a band actually. 

Robyn Bell: Oh 

Jane Hoffman: yeah.  What I remember about Elementary school was playground stuff and square dancing. I love square dancing.  It was in the big auditorium and all the kids  you know, we were all in a big circle. Change your partner around and round. I mean, it was just really fun. 

Robyn Bell: Oh, right. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. And so I remember being in that same room for band, then we moved to Los Angeles.   When I was 12. And so then I played in the seventh grade band. 

Robyn Bell: Was that a big culture shock going from Washington to okay.

Jane Hoffman: Huge. I came to middle school with Bobby socks and a t-shirt 

Robyn Bell: and nobody was wearing that in Los angeles. 

Jane Hoffman: Nope. Girls were wearing makeup. 

Robyn Bell: Oh

Jane Hoffman: , they were wearing nylons. 

Robyn Bell: Whoa. 

Jane Hoffman: They were wearing bras. I was still wearing a t-shirt hadn't worn. Any makeup. Didn't own any 

lipstick at the 

Robyn Bell: time to start shaving your legs. Dr.. Hoffman 

Jane Hoffman: didn't shave my legs? Nothing like that was sort of a little tomboy. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. Yeah. 

Jane Hoffman: It was a culture shock for sure. 

Robyn Bell: That you felt a lot of peer pressure. I bet. 

Jane Hoffman: Well, I did.  And the unfortunate thing about that was most of my friends were not in band. So I only played in band in middle school for one year 

Robyn Bell: because it wasn't the cool thing to do.

Jane Hoffman: Cause it wasn't none of my friends that I was meeting and hanging out with for in the band. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. I bet the band director was devastated because here comes this great flute player already knows how to play, probably making, even in seventh grades contributions to the band. 

Jane Hoffman: Well important. Yeah. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I don't remember that never crossed my mind. You know. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. So that  you stopped playing the flute then in eighth grade. 

Jane Hoffman: Well,  I did start getting music lessons. The funny thing is, is  we were living in an apartment. That had a swimming pool in the middle of the apartment, complex  so I swam a lot back and forth, back and forth back. There was nothing else to do. We lived on a busy street in Los Angeles and  I missed all the green trees. I missed all the outdoor fresh air. And we were kind of in the smog, but  one of the gentlemen in the complex was in the LA Philharmonic. And he told my mom, he said, you should get your daughter, some flute lessons. Cause she's pretty good. Cause I guess he could hear me practicing every now and then. So I got some flute lessons  at the local music store I can remember the room was really small. I was in the advanced Rubank book two and I was 13.

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: And I found the lessons to be really boring. And I just didn't like it. I just didn't like it. So  then I went to a great high school and I got into the orchestra there and then we moved again. And so there was my opportunity to be in the orchestra in high school,  in the 10th  grade. And so I really missed out on that. So then when we moved schools, I just thought, okay, you know, all new friends, 

Robyn Bell: Here we go again, 

Jane Hoffman: here we go again. So I joined the swim team because I'd been swimming. A lot in the pool, back and forth, back and forth. And I got clocked at some point for the coach. She says, oh, you want to join the team? You're a good breaststroke. So I joined the team and that's what I did in high school. 

Robyn Bell: So in high school, you didn't play the flute in the band 

Jane Hoffman: I didn't play the flute. 

Robyn Bell: This is a very unusual story. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: I think you are. You were atypical. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, I know. I missed all that. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. So you swim all through high school. You graduate. You're going to go to college. 

Jane Hoffman: I didn't go to college right away. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. My parents got divorced right when I was 18. And what are you going to do? Jane? Let's put you to work. So I went to dental assistant school. 

Robyn Bell: Oh, my gosh, you could clean  teeth. No. Oh no.

Jane Hoffman: And so I moved out at 18 and I started my dental assisting field. 

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. And I always had my flute with me and played it just a little bit, but it was just so as sort of like woo, whatever kind of stuff, you know, and then I did that for two years. And by now, 20. And I said, I'm not gonna,  do this. I was living in Santa Barbara and I Lavista. And at that time it was like really kind of hippie Haven. And everybody had a dog and I had a dog and it's  this isn't for me. And I took a trip and I wanted to find a place A different place to live. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman:   I had been to Utah.   I skipped over that, but I was a skier one winter, before the dental assisting job, I went to Utah and skied for the winter and worked as a short order cook.

Robyn Bell: I didn't realize you were such an athlete. Fascinating. When did you join the WNBA? No, I'm kidding. Okay. You were a short order cook. 

Jane Hoffman: I was short or just cook at the ski lodge and then I got my skiing for free and the rent in the place that we were living in was super cheap. And so I did a whole. Winter of skiing. And then that's when I came back and I said like, I want to see what college is all about. And I took a trip around the Western states and I found this college in Northern California called College of the Redwoods. And I said, okay, I'm going to move there. It's all green trees, 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, it's what you were missing. 

Jane Hoffman: Beautiful. And there's a college there. I moved out of Santa Barbara and,  drove up to Eureka and started school at the College of the Redwoods, which is an AA degree, like SCF 

Robyn Bell: I see. Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: And that's when I became a music major, because at that school, the music department was really hopping. I mean, it was fantastic. They had the best musicians there. It was like mind blowing. They were so good. Great, really, really great jazz department. I mean, phenomenal jazz department. 

Robyn Bell: And so you would have been around 20. 

Jane Hoffman: I was 21, 

Robyn Bell: 21 years old. And yet that flute really hadn't been a major part of your life. Isn't that interesting? 

Jane Hoffman: It not at all. Yep. I didn't know.  I started to learn my scales at 21. Can you believe that? 

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Jane Hoffman: I know pretty pathetic in a way, but, 

Robyn Bell: well, I mean, it all depends on your situation. Opportunities that are afforded to you. You know, when did you get a little fire lit in you? Some of us, it was in sixth grade. And you hose when you were 21. 

Jane Hoffman: Exactly.

Robyn Bell: Yeah. 

Jane Hoffman: And the fire was lit. It was unbelievable. Yeah. So it was good from then on it was college, college, college, 

Robyn Bell: all flute all the time. 

Jane Hoffman: Well, I did take up the saxophone because I wanted to be in the jazz band. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. Cause you said they had a really good jazz band. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. Yeah. So I played in the jazz band. 12 years or so we did all these really great dances in the community. Play the Glenn Miller stuff, the Count Basiestuff. 

Robyn Bell: Do you own a saxophone? Do you play it? 

Jane Hoffman: Well, you know, when I'm teaching at Booker Middle. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. 

Jane Hoffman: I played it there for those kids and I would teach the kids saxophone. 

Robyn Bell: Hmm. I've got some ideas going here? 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I don't love playing it, but you know, every once in a while I'll take it out and I go, should I sell this thing? No. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, that's really cool. 

Jane Hoffman: And then actually, when I, started teaching at Booker Middle, I took up the clarinet. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. So you can play all these woodwind instruments, 

Jane Hoffman: I can play the clarinet, saxophone, and the flute. Yeah. 

Robyn Bell: Not the oboe or bassoon. 

Jane Hoffman: No,  

Robyn Bell: they're very different. 

Jane Hoffman: Right? The double Reed. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, it's a very different skillset. Your head might explode with all the pressure, you know, like, the oboe player that pressure builds up in their head. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah,   I did do the bassoon  in my education degree. 

Robyn Bell: And your methods classes 

Jane Hoffman: in the methods class. Yeah. I really liked the bassoon. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. So you finished in Northern California. You were at a community college for 12 years. You said no, that can't be right.

Jane Hoffman: I finished my degree at College of the Redwoods. Then I transferred to Humboldt State University. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: And then I, went to Europe and did a,  flute masterclass  in Nice at the conservatory there and then a chamber music workshop in Majorca, Spain. And then I came back and I went and got my master's degree at Los Angeles, Cal State Northridge.

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: And then it went back to Humboldt and taught flute at Humboldt for the next eight years. 

Robyn Bell: All right. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. And I did the, methods class there for you know, the beginning woodwinds class.

Robyn Bell: Right.

Jane Hoffman: I did a theory class there and chamber music ensembles. I did there. I did a flute choir. 

Robyn Bell: Well, very active music program there that you were involved in.

Jane Hoffman: It was good. University, Humboldt State University was a good  department, man. 

Robyn Bell: All right. So what was next in your, path? 

Jane Hoffman: Well, after that, you know, I wasn't going to get tenure there.  And I had been going with this guy for eight years and we sort of broke up and he was at the college also. He was a pianist there and I was sort of tired of, you know, I've been in Humboldt since 1974 I left in 1992 and I drove across the country. Started my doctorate at Stony Brook with Samuel Barron. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. And that's in New York 

Jane Hoffman: and that's in New York, on long island. And by then I was 40 years old. 

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I went back to school at 40. 

Robyn Bell: Well,  you know what, here's what I'm getting Jane. You're like this leap of faith girl, and you just, I'm going to do this and you just do it. I love that. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I'm not so much like that anymore, but we 

Robyn Bell: got it all out of your system early. 

Jane Hoffman: I did do a lot of exploring. 

Robyn Bell: That's awesome. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: Do you miss that part of you?

Jane Hoffman:  Uh, huh? 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, I guess we just reach a certain age sometimes and we just become more conservative and 

Jane Hoffman: definitely

Robyn Bell: set in our ways is  my dad would say. Yeah. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: So you finished your doctorate it to Stony Brook? 

Jane Hoffman: Yes. And then at that time my dad had passed away and I'm in this crossroads. Where do I go now? What do I do? You know, my older sister wanted me to move back to LA. My mom definitely wanted me to move to Sarasota. 

Robyn Bell: She was here.

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, she was here. And I was thinking about moving back to the Seattle area because I just love that climate. And it just was, seemed like it was the easiest thing for me to do was to pack up my stuff and drive a U haul down to Florida. 

Robyn Bell: Right. Like every good daughter would do for their mother. Right. 

Jane Hoffman: Right. And my sister was there too. So 

Robyn Bell: you have two sisters, then one was in Los Angeles and one was in here. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.  And I hadn't been really near family for about 30 years, so and since my father passed away, I kind of had this feeling of wanting to be, you know, with family.

Robyn Bell: And what year was that? What year did you move to Sarasota? 

Jane Hoffman: 1997.

Robyn Bell: Okay. So if I do some quick math there, you've been here for   24 years. 

Jane Hoffman: That's a long time. Oh my God. It goes by fast. 

Robyn Bell: This is a long time. And. You know, like most musicians in our area, you have found a way over the past 24 years to really piece together a very successful music career. Tell us about all the different ways in which you have put your flute career together here on the Suncoast. 

  Jane Hoffman: Well, let's see. When I first moved here, I didn't have a job, but I had offers on a job. Like the community music schools said that they would hire me and maybe like, give me about 25 students. And I said, well, that's great. I could certainly get started with 25 students. And then actually MCC said they would hire me as well. 

Robyn Bell: And MCC being the State College of Florida and then Manatee Community College. 

Jane Hoffman: Exactly.

Robyn Bell: Right.

Jane Hoffman: And then there was another gentleman.  the Craig Turley, orchestras is a traveling orchestra group that he said he would get me some gigs. Well, I got here and none of those gigs panned out. So I had to go to work right away. 

Robyn Bell: Right.

Jane Hoffman: I went to Michael's on East and joined the catering department and 

Robyn Bell: Well, mean you had some short order cook experience. 

Jane Hoffman: I had, well, I put myself through. Three degrees: AA, BA, MA waitressing. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.  But my doctorate, I said, no, I'm not going to do that. I'm strictly focused on this. I'm going to have a lot of competition, but I don't want to have any thing else going on. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. But when you moved here and some of these jobs in the music business didn't pan out right away, you turned to what you knew and you found a way to make that work. 

Jane Hoffman: Right.

Robyn Bell: Interesting.

Jane Hoffman: And then the JCC. Had 

Robyn Bell: JCC being the Jewish Community Center, 

Jane Hoffman: they were building a little music school and that was called the Hecht School of Music. And I applied for that job. Well, the salary he offered, I just said, no, thank you. I said, no, thank you. And then they came back to me with a better salary. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. When you turned them down, then they 

Jane Hoffman: came back to them.

Robyn Bell: Very good. 

Jane Hoffman: They came back to me, 

Robyn Bell: negotiation skills. 

Jane Hoffman: I mean, it was just so bad. It was like so easy to walk away from it, you know? And then I don't even remember what it was at this point. You know,  but I said, okay, okay. I'll do that.  And so I started the school 1999 and brand new building. There was no phone line. He said at the director, I said, well, you can come down to the J and use the telephone. I said, you've got to be kidding me. Every time I need to make a phone call. I'm gonna walk down there. You know, what about the parents that want to call about lessons and this and that? 

Robyn Bell: And this was really before everyone had cell phones attached to them?

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, for sure. Yeah. Okay. Okay. We'll put a phone line in. Thank you. You know? Well, the building wasn't really set up for. A music school, they didn't design it. Well, they weren't visually thinking that it was going to be successful or that it was going to really do anything. It did 

Robyn Bell: because you were its leader. Totally, yeah.

Jane Hoffman: You know, I mean, I was determined to make it work.  Here I have Mr. Hecht, depending on me to make his school be something  so they also had like Eight or nine preschool classes there. So I also had to learn how to teach preschool music to like 150 kids, 

Robyn Bell: like Orff or Kodaly. I, and that kind of elementary music.

Jane Hoffman: No, I made up games.  I totally made up games. It was really. A lot of fun. We rhythm sticks and flashcards and all kinds of fun games and the kids, we loved it. I loved it. The kids loved it. I loved them. They were so cute. You know? 

Robyn Bell: And you're still involved with that ? 

Jane Hoffman: No. No,  cause the JCC. Went out of business. Yeah. Went bankrupt 

Robyn Bell: because you're high salary. No, that didn't do it. 

Jane Hoffman: That didn't do it. I didn't do it. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. So that job kind of dried up for you. 

Jane Hoffman: Well that, yeah, that shop w liquid for eight years, I had benefits and I had a little pension building and I thought, you know, I could, do this to the end, but no such luck. Then 

Robyn Bell: but you had established a pretty good rapport with the Hecht Foundation right? 

Jane Hoffman: Just Mr. Hecht. Just him and his wife. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. Yeah. Imre and Vera. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I, had visited them in their New York apartment across the street from the park. And then I. Condo on Longboat Key that I went to 

Robyn Bell: life so hard 

Jane Hoffman: life's was hard for them. Yeah. And then they had a, house up in the country, also in Mahopac. And I had been to all three of those. So it was a nice relationship.  And I  knew his daughter, he adopted a daughter, his caretaker. They didn't have children. His nephews died in the Holocaust and we used to have a picture of his nephews in the music building. Well, yeah, that was so, so that they didn't have children.  Imre and Vera  but in the end he had this caretaker.  Isabella. Poland. And she came to live with them and she took care of him. So they adopted her in the end. So she was able to take care of a lot of things with the properties and his estate and 

Robyn Bell: But you stayed close with them as well. And,  you knew about this foundation and, the funding that 

Jane Hoffman: I didn't know much about it. I really didn't. I learned over the years,  I knew how much money the JCC was getting from them. 

Robyn Bell: And so after eight years that's, when the JCC went bankrupt years, a little community school closed, and then you said, what do I do now? 

Jane Hoffman: Right. What do I do now?  You know, that summer I got hired at Interlochen.   And that was really, really nice. That was good. And in the meantime, I was also subbing  with the Sarasota Opera. But I think that was also the crash of  2008. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. 

Jane Hoffman: The foundation didn't want me to start another school anywhere because they didn't want to put out a lot of money at one time. So I started out just really small and I started doing after school lessons at Booker Middle. And then I got to know one of the board members and  she's been my savior. Yeah. She has been my savior. 

Robyn Bell: I came here in 2009 and then we needed a flute teacher shortly thereafter.  So we, you to teach clue here. 

Jane Hoffman: You were a savior also. 

Robyn Bell: Well, I don't know. I don't know about that, but you know, in the same light, the Pops, their principal flute player moved out of town. And I said, Jane, you teach here for us at the college. Why don't you come be principal flute in the Pops? 

Jane Hoffman: Exactly.

Robyn Bell: And, you know, things just kind of spin their way out. And I tell you, I love it. When a plan comes together, like all those stars align and, with your connection, being the flute teacher at SCF, the principal flute of the Pops and now secretary of the board and your strong relationship with the Hecht Foundation, you have really single-handedly been responsible for the past  couple of years for obtaining this grant that, the Pops Orchestra does to put on our summer camp called Camping with the Pops. So tell us about this grant and how the Pops has used that grant over the past two summers. And what we're going to do with that grant for camp this summer. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, I was really happy about starting  Camping with the Pops. And I think it's been great. 

Robyn Bell: Because the Pops really had not done any educational outreach until four years ago. 

Jane Hoffman: Exactly.

Robyn Bell: Yeah. 

Jane Hoffman: And I think that  the one thing that's been so great about being with the Pops organization is that. The growth that I've seen just over the years has just been so wonderful. The audiences, the,  financial situation of the Pops and we're hiring our first executive director. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. That's very exciting. 

Jane Hoffman: It's very exciting. And  there's a lot of strength going on right now. So the first year was a side-by-side concert and. I love that. That was great because we're fun.

Robyn Bell: Yeah. And what that means is the kids at the camp sat right alongside the adults in the orchestra. So we kind of combine the students with the adults and put on a concert. 

Jane Hoffman: And the kids had a lesson right before the rehearsal for the whole week. And so we taught them the music and then they sat down and played it. You know, they were really great. Then the last summer during COVID, I still wanted to be able to use the money again in some way. And we decided to do a lesson program. So. There were forties students involved? 

Robyn Bell: I think 42, I think our biggest  crop of kids. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, that was good.  All those kids got a group of five lessons and we also developed a relationship with those kids. 

Robyn Bell: And totally for free the students didn't have to pay one penny for these lessons. 

Jane Hoffman: Right. And it was all on zoom. And so we,  did have a relationship with a lot of those students. In fact, I'm really delighted that one of the flute students from that group is going to be in the summer camp this summer. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. Yes. Yeah. And in addition to that, I have seen. Like this incoming group of students at the State College of Florida, three of them have been coming to the Camping with the Pops the past three years.

Jane Hoffman: Really?

Robyn Bell: Yes. Yeah. And I go to the school and I'll be like, Hey, I recognize you. Oh yeah. I was in the summer camp. I'm coming to SCF. So it really works out all the way. 

Jane Hoffman: That's really great. I didn't know that. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. So let's talk about the camp this year, because last year was virtual summer lessons, but this year we're a little bit more open because of COVID. So tell us how we're organizing the camp this year. 

Jane Hoffman: So this year  due to COVID the Pops doing their chamber music series. We carried that over as an idea for the summer. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, that's right. So we could have fewer people in a room together to still socially distance. So that was the number one priority is there's these smaller chamber groups and then the coaches, it's funny how it works out.

Jane Hoffman: Very,

Robyn Bell: yeah. The coaches are all Pops musicians that also teach here in the Music Program at State College of Florida, because we have this rule about no guests on campus. I said, well, how am I going to do that? And we thought, well, that will work out fine. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. It, turned out great. Yeah.  So we have a string quartet, we have a woodwind quintet 

Robyn Bell: you're coaching that 

Jane Hoffman: I'm coaching, that we have a percussion ensemble, which is really great. A jazz combo. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. 

Jane Hoffman: Brass quintet, 

Robyn Bell: brass quintet. 

Jane Hoffman: And that's it? 

Robyn Bell: Yes. Five groups, 

Jane Hoffman: five groups, five coaches, all involved with SCF and the Pops 

Robyn Bell: 30 students. 

Jane Hoffman: That's great. 

Robyn Bell: And all of those students are either past, present, or future SCF music students. So 

Jane Hoffman: that's great. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. Works out. Perfect. 

Jane Hoffman:  It's a really great idea that has worked out just like I can't wait for it to get started. 

Robyn Bell: I know. Yeah, we're recording this beforehand, but we start rehearsals Monday, July 12th, and we have four rehearsals every night, that week. And then Friday, July 16th, we have a concert. And the State College of Florida is allowing us to have 150 invited guests. That way we can still socially distance in the Neel. And so we reached out to the kids first, I sent him an email and I go, give me a list of your parents and friends and family members. And we ended up with about 50 and so we had a hundred seats left. And so yesterday I sent out very late in the afternoon email blast to all of our patrons. And by this morning, I think 9:30, we had filled up the other 100 slots. So we have a sold out, even though we didn't sell anything is all free sold out. Thanks to the Hecht Foundation. Thank you to the Hecht Foundation. And so we'll have 150 people there to watch. These 30 students coached by Pops and SCF instructors and players and it's on July 16th at 7:30, so excited. 

Jane Hoffman: It's very good. And, and what's great about the age group of the kids is that they already know how to play their instruments and they've gotten their music ahead of time. So hopefully they're going to come a little bit, prepared. This 

Robyn Bell: is only four rehearsals. You've got to whip that together. 

Jane Hoffman: You got to whip that together. So these,  students have to be pretty good on their instruments to participate in this particular camp. 

Robyn Bell: Now you mentioned COVID and how the,  Pops had shifted at summer camp last summer. But Jane talked to us in more detail about how COVID affected you,  basically a self-employed musician. And what did you do to keep going during the pandemic and,  how are things looking for you coming out of the shutdown? 

Jane Hoffman: Well, I was fortunate in that I got a lot of students still from the various schools, like Pineview, Brookside Middle,  Macintosh Middle. Riverview, and I taught all zoom lessons. So these lessons were mostly from kids that decided to stay home. 

Robyn Bell:  Like in March, did you shift to zoom lessons immediately?

Jane Hoffman: Yes.

Robyn Bell: Okay. And that was your first time to ever do that. So how was that learning curve? Technology-wise do you have to get a microphone and you know, like there was always that for me, at least. I had to figure this out. How does this work and how can this be better? Right. Did you have those same expense?

Jane Hoffman: Well, I, I did. And I didn't, I didn't buy any extra equipment except for a brand new computer, because yeah, because my. MacBook pro at that time, wouldn't upgrade to any new zoom things that were coming out.  Cause it was too old. So 

Robyn Bell: I know the feeling. Yeah, can't upgrade anymore. 

Jane Hoffman: Can upgrade done upgrading. So I would have to say some students had a much better set up of their own.  It was sort of on their end a little bit more than on my end. Cause,  I could see them well, but you're using also iPads 

Robyn Bell: phones,

Jane Hoffman: phones. And what other kinds of things,  that the students were using? None of them had a microphone. So that was sort of out of the question. I had one really good student who definitely needed to have something better, but we managed, we managed, I had a beginning student who set up was perfect for some reason. And, you know, so I didn't really struggle too much with any of that. 

Robyn Bell: And coming out of COVID now that we can sort of gather again and the vaccination,  do you still. Foresee yourself, teaching zoom lessons to some students that you just can't get to. 

Jane Hoffman: I might. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I might be doing that. I think it's, certainly been a lot easier for parents. They don't have to drive their, child anywhere. Very convenient, very convenient for me, 

Robyn Bell: except for, they have to listen to their kid, play their flute lesson. 

Jane Hoffman: We not always should be doing. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. All right. 

Jane Hoffman: You know, let's see if you're getting any better. 

Robyn Bell: Where's all my money going.

Jane Hoffman: Exactly.

Robyn Bell: That's interesting. Is there anything else out of the COVID shutdown in the pandemic that maybe benefited you as a musician that you will continue to carry forward?

Jane Hoffman: Hmm, that's kind of hard.  I can't really think of the benefits exactly. Except for the fact that, like I just said, in terms of some parents still wanting to do zoom lessons and that's fine with me nobody has to drive anywhere. And the other thing about Zoom lessons is the timeframe is,  usually very secured. Like it. when a student comes to the house, you chit chat. You know, you're not know each other, you hang around, you know, an hour lesson can become an hour and 15 minutes. It can be an hour and 20 minutes. You know, you get carried away. If a student is really good, you don't want to, you know, so, 

Robyn Bell: so with zoom, it's like our 58 minutes is up.

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. with Zoom it's like, this is it. The lessons over. Thank you very much. See you next week. So then. Not really good with cutting a student off. If they're at my house, you know, if they want more, I kind of want to give it to them, but,  and I never did, like back to back lessons. I never had that many students at home that I would have, you know, five in a row back to back.

I didn't have that kind of a studio 

Robyn Bell: that's a lot. And I know we're all really looking forward to things, kind of getting back to normal.  And it's still a little weird to me though, you know, because we're opening back up, but this is sort of our off season,  for the arts here. And so all we can really do is plan for the fall right now, you know, in the winter.

Do you F do you find that? Cause we're in the middle of the summer and things are opening back up, but we really wouldn't be doing much anyway. If the vaccine had rolled out in October, And everybody had gotten vaccinated, and then they say November, December. Okay. You're good to go. We would be like giving concerts immediately, but because when the, that happened and everybody started getting vaccinated and it's been this kind of late spring over the summer, we'll then it's almost like we just press pause for a year and we're just, okay. Now we're back in that little planning season and we'll pick it up in September, October, November.

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. It's like a slow start. 

Robyn Bell: It is. Yeah. Yes. 

Jane Hoffman: Cause they were still not sure.  Just driving over here, they were talking about how the Delta variant is again, affecting a lot of people and they're talking about whether or not kids going back to school will be mandatory mask wearing optional mask wearing.

Robyn Bell: Right.

Jane Hoffman:  I think it's really, not all settled. 

Robyn Bell: No, I don't think it will be for a long time. We just, as someone said the other day, we're just going to have to learn to live with this and we can't let it stop us anymore.  We stay in front of it. Encourage everybody to get vaccinated. Perhaps we get boosters  because the Delta variants not going to be the last one, we'll have an elephant variant and a Frank variant, you know? And so it may be that okay, every six months you need to get a little booster, but I'm thankful for the timing as weird as it is that it gives us that time to ramp back up. And it didn't happen right in the middle of the season when we really would have been able to. Like scurry around and go crazy and  put on a concert real fast. You know, 

Jane Hoffman: there's a little bit of time for planning now. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, and that's  kind of the mode that we're in. We're about to put on this camp and I've had time to plan for that. And then spoiler alert. We're about to announce the Pop's upcoming season with all the fantastic shows we're doing. And those tickets will go on sale soon. So if you're a Pops fan, be looking for your email. If you're not a Pops fan, we'll just become a Pops fan and you can listen to Jane Hoffman, play her flute. Okay. So Jane, are you ready for your rapid fire questions? 

Jane Hoffman: I am ready for my rapid fire questions. I can't wait for these!

Robyn Bell: You've been practicing. 

Jane Hoffman: I love your rapid fire. 

Robyn Bell: All right. This first one, someone asked me this the other day and I don't think I can choose, but you have to because you're in the hot seat band or orchestra.

Jane Hoffman: Orchestra,

Robyn Bell: I get that. But you had a pretty good experience playing with our band. 

Jane Hoffman: I loved it. It was fabulous. It was the best band concert I ever played. And I'm not kidding. It was fabulous. I'll never forget that program. 

Robyn Bell: Let me tell you that. Because it was during COVID and we couldn't really have an audience. And when I look back on everything, that's the biggest shame to me because. It was a really special concert. I think some of the best programs that I've put together as a conductor happened during COVID when nobody heard him. 

Jane Hoffman: Well, you did have some online streaming people. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, that's true. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: It's not quite the same.

Jane Hoffman: No, it's not. But that was really an exciting program. 

Robyn Bell: At least we only could do it because of your help. So thank you for that. Okay. How about this one? Beginner flute student or advanced flute student. 

Jane Hoffman: I can't do both. I have to say one or the other. 

Robyn Bell: You do it's the rules 

Jane Hoffman: advanced.

Robyn Bell: There is something to say, though, for taking someone who doesn't even know how to put an instrument together and watching them over one year's time, being able to play line 72 in the beginning Rubank book.


Jane Hoffman: I mean, that's why I say I can pick both because I do love teaching beginners as well. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah,   you know, I taught high school when I taught in public school, but I loved going over to the middle school with the sixth grade and just taking them from nothing to somewhere. And I used to think I'd like lay awake at night thinking you're never going to as an educator, never going to see that amount of growth again, because once you reach a certain level, you're going. Incrementally get smaller. 

Jane Hoffman: For sure? Yes. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. And then sometimes if you get a really advanced student, they've got maybe some bad habits that are hard to break and get frustrated with them or no, 

Jane Hoffman: definitely.  Yeah, because they don't know that they have or they don't want to change because it's really hard to change. I mean, I've changed a lot of things in my flute playing over, being that I was a late bloomer, like at 30. In my master's degree program, I had a changed my embouchure. 

Robyn Bell: Oh wow. 

Jane Hoffman: And   another teacher had me changed a little bit of my hand position. So  I didn't have those early lessons.

Robyn Bell: Right.

Jane Hoffman: And so I think my best teaching years were in my master degree program. 

Robyn Bell: Sure. I was very fortunate in that  my junior high band director, seventh grade, when I started was a trumpet player. So I kind of got really good trumpet, basics from day one. I don't know if it had been the case. If I had chosen clarinet and my band director's a trumpet player, you know, 

Jane Hoffman: that makes a difference. 

Robyn Bell: I think. So you really do. Okay. California or Florida. 

Jane Hoffman: Oh, I hate to say it, but California, 

Robyn Bell: you don't have to hate to say it. That's okay. What do you like better about California?

Jane Hoffman: Well, California is so beautiful. You know,  you want to take a trip. You've got all these beautiful rivers. You've got Yosemite you've got Tahoe. You've got the high Sierra. You've got skiing. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. It's a geographical phenomenon compared to Florida. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, exactly.

Robyn Bell: I totally get that. 

Jane Hoffman:  The rivers around here once you've seen it when mangrove. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. It's what all one main Grove was. 

Jane Hoffman: Exactly.

Robyn Bell: Okay. Trader Joe's or Aldi. 

Jane Hoffman: Oh, easy piece of cake Trader Joe's. Oh my goodness. 

Robyn Bell: We don't have a Trader Joe's  near where I live, like 30 minute hike to Trader Joe's. So Aldi for me. 

Jane Hoffman: Oh yeah. 

Robyn Bell: Just because of proximity, you had to call me next time you go to Trader Joe's and we'll go together. You can show me all the good things to buy there. All right. I know the answer to this, but I'm asking because it's fun. Wine or champagne. 

Jane Hoffman: Oh, piece of cake champagne. 

Robyn Bell: That's why they call you Champagne Jane.

Jane Hoffman: That's right. I got that nickname working at Michael's on East in the catering department. 

Robyn Bell: Love it. 

Jane Hoffman: We did these Sunday brunches out at New College. Where they set up these big tents? 

Robyn Bell: Yes. 

Jane Hoffman: Tons and tons of people there. I'm not even sure what it was for like donors or, you know, they weren't students there or anything. And I mean, EV like, I don't know, 10, 15, 20 bottles of champagne open all day long,  and there were all these champagne bottles left over and I was like, oh, clean up, clean up was really fun. Cleanup was really fun. 

Robyn Bell: You can't let it go to waste. 

Jane Hoffman: No 

Robyn Bell: Champagne Jane. 

Jane Hoffman: We did. Have to do that a little bit, but, we had our share during cleanup. 

Robyn Bell: That's great. Now, do you ever go to back to Michael's on East and play as a flute player and go, Hey, are you, I used to work here. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. Well, I know a lot of people from there because of that. I see them around town. I see them at events because I'll be playing wedding and there will Michael's on East willbe catering it. And I usually know people that are catering.  A wine cellar event, there is a flutist, flute and guitar. So I see them around town and I'm friends with people there. 

Robyn Bell: That's awesome. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: Okay. Where are you taking an out-of-town guests for the weekend on the Suncoast? Like what activities would you do? Where would you go eat what's on like your must do list in our area.

 Jane Hoffman: Well, I would definitely try and take them out to one of the beaches. Like maybe Lido. 

Robyn Bell: That's your favorite beach? 

Jane Hoffman: Well like Lido south. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. 

Jane Hoffman: South Lido is beautiful there. Restaurants, I don't really have a big favorite. I don't 

Robyn Bell: favorite breakfast spot. 

Jane Hoffman: No,  I don't go out to eat breakfast all that much. 

Robyn Bell: Now you live near  Bakers and Wife. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: That's a good restaurant. 

Jane Hoffman: That's a very good restaurant. 

Robyn Bell: You eat there often? 

Jane Hoffman: No, 

Robyn Bell: no, 

Jane Hoffman: I don't go out to eat a lot, you know? 

Robyn Bell: Yeah.   

Jane Hoffman: I like their cocktails.  They have great cocktails there.

Robyn Bell: Oh yeah. Another good reason to go there. 

Jane Hoffman: They have really good cocktails. 

Robyn Bell: All right. Do you drink coffee? 

Jane Hoffman: I don't drink a lot of coffee 

Robyn Bell: Good fo you. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I don't drink coffee even, maybe not even once a week. Really. 

Robyn Bell: All right. What about like the Ringling or Selby gardens? You do any of those kinds of things? 

Jane Hoffman: one of my good friends has a membership to Selby Gardens and she loves to go there. So,   I go there on her membership a lot. That's like her favorite place 

Robyn Bell: Now, the Pops just played our chamber music concert. We did the. Pop-up concert down at the Historic Spanish Point, which Selby now runs. Had you ever been there before? 

Jane Hoffman: Yes, I have. I played weddings there. That would be a great place to take somebody actually.

Robyn Bell: It's beautiful down there. 

Jane Hoffman: Beautiful grounds. Absolutely. And then if you go there, then you can go have lunch at that place where you went. Oh yeah. How was the food 

Robyn Bell: Evies oh, it's good. Yeah,  they call it Evie's on the Point. 

Jane Hoffman: Okay. Cause that's a really fun place.  It's right on the water. So that would be a nice day.

Robyn Bell: It would be. Yeah. Very cool. Okay. A day at the beach or a day by the pool. 

Jane Hoffman: A day at the beach. 

Robyn Bell: You liked the beach better than the pool. 

Jane Hoffman: Love the beach. 

Robyn Bell: You don't mind the dirty sand and the shark. 

Jane Hoffman: I love swimming in the golf. 

Robyn Bell: That's cool. 

Jane Hoffman: Yeah. I love the gulf 

Robyn Bell: And what about the temperature of the gulf? When is it like too cold? What? You can't go in like December or do you go in no matter what? 

Jane Hoffman: No, I don't go in no matter what. I wait for it to warm up because sometimes I get in earlier, I think only the first time I was in the gulf this year was in June. 

Robyn Bell: Oh, okay. 

Jane Hoffman: And so I felt like that was a little bit late, but 

Robyn Bell: I don't like cold water.

Jane Hoffman: Yeah.

Robyn Bell: Yeah, 

Jane Hoffman: Do you have a pool?. 

Robyn Bell: But we don't ever heat 

Jane Hoffman: it. You don't really need to, well, what about the winter? 

Robyn Bell: Yeah, just, you know, we have a gas heater on our pool and it, you know, like you get the gas bill that month when you ran it. And you're like, oh my stars. And so the problem is when you don't run it, your pool gets cold. So when you turn it on, it works for a long time to get it. But then when you turn it off, If you don't continue to turn it on because the pool, the pool heaters are set so that once it reaches your desired temperature, it turns itself off. I say, and it only runs when the pool pump is on and we don't run our pool pump all the time, just like from nine to five or whatever. And so if we just left it on. And I don't know why we're talking about this on the cultural arts podcast, but if we just left the pool heater on, sometimes I think that initial, get it up to the heat to the point you want. And then, you know, maybe overnight it goes down just a little, but then it would come back on and would stay there and it would be better, but that's not what we do. We turn it off for maybe a month or two, and then it gets really cold and then it takes forever and a whole bunch of money to get it back. You know what I mean? 

Jane Hoffman: Goes the bill. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. So we got to work on it. It's negotiations, you know, I think I would get in the pool more if it was warm. 

Jane Hoffman: It's true. We don't need to talk about more pool stuff.

Robyn Bell: You have a pool. 

Jane Hoffman: I do

Robyn Bell: you have a pool heater? 

Jane Hoffman: No. 

Robyn Bell: Oh, do you get in your pool? 

Jane Hoffman: I do. I'm in it all the time 

Robyn Bell: and it stays warm. 

Jane Hoffman: Well,  I don't have a cage.  And it's always in the sun, so yeah. You know, but, but December. And February, March, January, February, March. It's kind of just those few months, but April, May, it starts to get ready.

Robyn Bell: Yeah. Go onto the beach for us. Just seems it's such a, I don't want to say ordeal, but you know, you got to pack up your chairs and you got to get your towels and you've got to do this and that. And the new gun of go fight the traffic and find a parking spot. And I just, when I think about everything to get to the beach, I go, I'm exhausted. I can't go. I'm thinking I'll just stay here by my pool. 

Jane Hoffman: Stay by the pool, it's so much easier. You can have your cocktail there, 

Robyn Bell: but you don't have to pay anybody to bring me a cocktail in my house. Totally. All right. Jane roundabouts are stoplights. 

Jane Hoffman: I have to say stoplights. 

Robyn Bell: Why is that? 

Jane Hoffman: Well, I don't mind roundabouts, really? Yeah. But I think they're putting in too many, 

Robyn Bell: they've kind of gone roundabout crazy. 

Jane Hoffman: They have like 41. All the way up, like what that big one that they're doing right now, where the road floods and that's always a mess. I don't know what's going to happen with that roundabout.

Robyn Bell: Are they going to put this kissing statue there in the center of their roundabout? 

Jane Hoffman: I don't know. Oh, I don't know. 

Robyn Bell: All right. Here's your last question? 

Jane Hoffman: Okay.

Robyn Bell: Where should the Sarasota Orchestra next call home.

Jane Hoffman: How would I know the answer to that 

Robyn Bell: You don't have any ideas? 

Jane Hoffman: Well, in the beginning I did I really thought that where they have the dog races would have been a great place. 

Robyn Bell: Yes. 

Jane Hoffman: It's still in town. 

Robyn Bell: Yes, it's right there by the Asolo 

Jane Hoffman: fabulous parking lot. 

Robyn Bell: Right?

Jane Hoffman: They've got tons of space. 

Robyn Bell: Are they still shooting for Payne Park though? They've got this new city commissioner. Are they now? 

Jane Hoffman: I don't know. I think they did go back to them, but I don't know. It just doesn't seem like it's big enough and they have to take away too much park. 

Robyn Bell: I think there's this thought that they think they have to be right in the middle of downtown.

Jane Hoffman: Yeah, they don't. 

Robyn Bell: But I think that no, 

Jane Hoffman: Look at the Asolo I mean, look at where they go. 

Robyn Bell: Totally. And everybody did ballet, 

Jane Hoffman: you know, it's a fabulous place 

Robyn Bell: you know, it may be that the dog track's not willing to sell? 

Jane Hoffman: Or maybe they have another project in mind already. I have kind of heard that, but I don't know, like a hotel, I don't know, but I would have jumped on that.

Robyn Bell: Totally. Totally. Maybe they'll put us on. Well, congratulations, Jane Hoffman, you are. Officially part of the clubs. So tell our listeners where they can go to follow you or your career and all the different places and organizations where you play your flute. 

Jane Hoffman: Well, you can definitely find me at the Pops Orchestra all season coming up. 

Robyn Bell:  Have a Facebook page. 

Jane Hoffman: I do have a Facebook page.

Robyn Bell: All right.  

Jane Hoffman:  Jane Hoffman Flute plus 

Robyn Bell: you have a website. 

Jane Hoffman: I have a website. A little dead in the water. 

Robyn Bell: I, to just going to get a little facelift that's all right. 

Jane Hoffman: I don't even think it's going to open right now. Jane hoffmann.org. I have to work on that. 

Robyn Bell: And are you inTrio voila. You getting  that group back together?

Jane Hoffman: We have to talk about that because COVID has kind of changed the energy there  and, , I'm the one that kind of basically went out and got the gigs and,  I have to start to make phone calls and I have to see if they want to get together again.

Robyn Bell: Right. Yeah.  COVID's changed everything 

Jane Hoffman: has changed. Has it has changed? 

Robyn Bell: Well, Jane, it's been really fun working with you the past decade. If you can believe it and watching your influence on our flute students here at SCF. Observing your dedication to your craft, your students, your performances, and working with you in so many different facets, you are truly a gem and an asset to our community. And I appreciate not just your friendship, but your perspective, your work ethic, your professionalism, and really the genuine care you take in our students and in making music together. So thank you for joining us on the podcast today, and let's have a great week at camp. 

Jane Hoffman: Definitely let's have a great week and I thank you so much, Robyn. I feel the same way about you.