Many of the same skills and characteristics required to play an instrument and fly an aircraft are remarkably similar, from precision and timing to hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and multi-tasking. Both musicians and pilots know the value of patience, dedication, consistent practice, and listening to others in their pursuit of proficiency. And when it comes to staying level-headed when faced with the unexpected, both know how to respond without missing a beat.
With this in mind, it’s not surprising to learn that many musicians go on to become exceptional pilots. And, there are many pilots who love to play music! Recognizing the correlations between music and aviation, the Flying Musicians Association (FMA) was formed to further growth and interest in both.
Founded in 2009, the FMA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation that brings together anyone who shares a passion for both music and flying, from all proficiency levels and genres. Through performances, presentations, networking, and scholarships, the FMA inspires, educates, and assists youth and adults in the science and art of aeronautics and music.
“The Flying Musicians Association is a network of over 800 like-minded people from all walks of life,” said John Zapp, President and CEO of FMA. “Some members have reached the pinnacle of both aviation and music, and others are just learning to fly or perform professionally. It’s a unique opportunity for pilots who are also musicians to be a part of a supportive community that encourages them to enhance the pursuit of their passions, whether as a vocation or as a hobby.”
FMA members around the country frequently gather for hangar jams and concerts at aviation and music functions ranging from local fly-ins to national and even worldwide events. Hartzell Propeller is a proud sponsor of the FMA’s mission and the exceptional live music entertainment provided by its talented members.
“Hartzell Propeller’s valued support of our mission continues to propel the Flying Musicians Association’s programs into the future,” said Zapp.
In an effort to inspire the next generation to grow and sustain their interest in both music and aviation, the FMA Solo Program was developed in 2014. This unique program is designed for high school student musicians who excel in music and have a strong desire to learn to fly. Recipients will receive a scholarship to assist them in their flight school training and help them realize the dream of going from zero time to solo.
“We’ve now awarded fifteen Learn to Fly scholarships and assisted numerous young student musicians in their pursuit to fly,” said Zapp. “Over the years, the FMA Solo Program has brought hundreds of student members into our network of pilot musicians, which is an invaluable lifeline to anyone aspiring to excel in academics, music, aviation, and life in general.”
Jovencia “Jovie” Webbeking
2022 FMA Solo Recipient
The FMA Solo Scholarship Program accepts nominations from music teachers or music directors. Candidates must be a junior or senior high school music student with a passion for music and aviation. All nominees will receive a sponsored FMA student membership, including an FMA shirt and other items donated by FMA members and sponsors.
To find out more about the Flying Musicians Association and get involved, visit FlyingMusicians.org.