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Musical Resources
  • Flute Introduction
  • Mary Brainerd
Flute Introduction

How to Play the Flute
Playing the Flute

Take a deep breath, and breathe out while slightly smiling, making a "too" sound.
* Make sure that the shape of your lips doesn't change as you breathe out.

Lip shape while blowing out

Watch this video to learn about the breath method and speed.

Producing sound with the head joint

The pitch you produce changes depending on the speed of your breath. Faster breath will produce a higher pitch, and slower breath will produce a lower pitch.

Mouth opening Breath speed Pitch
Wide Slow Low
Normal Normal Medium
Narrow Fast High

Using the head joint, move your tongue as if saying "too-too" while blowing. You'll notice the "too-too" motion makes the sound much clearer than the "foo-foo" motion.
* Pay close attention to motion of your tongue when blowing if you want to produce a good sound.

Tonguing with the head joint

If the flute is not put together properly, it may break, or become incapable of producing a good sound. Pay particular attention to where you hold the flute when putting it together.

  1. Hold the foot joint and the body joint as shown in the picture, and slide them together. Do not grip the keys while doing this.

    Inserting the foot joint into the body
  2. Hold the head joint and the body joint as shown in the picture, and slide them together. As before, do not grip the keys while doing this.

    Inserting the head joint into the body

Paying close attention to the position of your thumb, make sure that the inside of the first joint of your left index finger is stays in contact with the flute, and hold the flute with your fingers in their respective positions.

Holding the flute

When holding the flute up to play, your shoulders and elbows should be relaxed.

Lifting the flute (from the front)
Lifting the flute (from the back)
  • Mary Brainerd

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