How to play vibrato on flute

how to play vibrato on the fluteThis is an excerpt from my book, Essential Advice From A Pro: For The Beginner And Intermediate Flute Player, which basically contains years of lessons with me condensed into one book with great easy-to-implement tips on playing:

Vibrato can be fast, it can be slow, it can be wide, and it can be narrow. We need to be able to produce a combination of all these variables to make our music wonderfully expressive.

What is vibrato?

Ask five different flute teachers this and you will get five different answers. Some say it is produce by the diaphragm, some say it is produced by the abdominal muscles, some say it is produced in the throat, some say it is simply the pitch wavering up and down, and some say it is the volume going from loud to soft very quickly.  [Read more…]

How playing an instrument makes you smarter

How playing an instrument makes us smarterA few months ago I had an article published on Lifehack on How Learning A Musical Instrument Makes You A Well Rounded Person.

My main line of thinking was that the complexities of playing an instrument involves both left and right hemispheres of our brains. This makes us smarter, and we can transfer these skills to all areas of our lives.  [Read more…]

My Flute Teaching Methodology and Philosophy

My Flute Teaching Methodology and PhilosophyI thought it might be interesting, and maybe even useful for potential students and future teachers, if I gave a brief on my flute teaching methodology and my philosophy as a flute teacher.

As a flute student, I was often told how to play: Where to play loudly, where to play softly, when to add vibrato or remove it, which pieces to play for exams and so on. It wasn’t until towards the end of my high school playing years that I started to think for myself about how I liked the music I played to sound, and it wasn’t until university that I finally understood how to add genuine expression into the music.

I find most flute students who come to me after learning from other teachers are like how I was – they find it easier to play technically well than to play with musicianship and expression.

I think it is very important for people to think for themselves, form their own opinions, and have their own ideas and preferences when listening and playing music (and in any aspect of life, really). Based on my own experiences, and my philosophy of independent thinking, I like to instil a sense of ownership in my students.  [Read more…]