Tuesday, March 27, 2012

10 Flute Facts in Your Face

 A musician who plays the flute can be referred to as a flute player, a flautist, or a flutist.

2. The more inclusive definition of a flute is any aerophone that creates a sound when air is blown across the opening. (A Coke bottle can technically be considered a flute.)

3. Flute fragments have been recovered in Europe that date back to about 40,000 years ago.

4. The Germans called transverse flutes Schweytzerpfeiffs (Swiss pipe) or Zwerchpfeiffs (transverse pipe). The Swiss just called them Zwerchpfeiffs.

5. Besides being a great leader, Frederick the Great was also a great flautist! He used to allot approximately four hours a day to practice his flute, and was also an avid composer.

6. Flutes are divided into two types, end-blown flutes and the side-blown flutes. The side-blown, flutes mostly appear in orchestras, while the end-blown flutes are found more typically in jazz, folk and even some rock.

7. Because the flute is reed-less, it typically requires more air than any other wind instrument.

8. In 1529 Martin Agricola suggested shaking the voice to create a better sound when playing the flute.  This was the first and last mention of vibrato until the eighteenth century.

9. In one if the earliest Italian operas, Eurydice, written by Jacobi Peri in 1600, three flutes played a behind-the-scenes ritornello while onstage, a shepherd, Tirsi, pretended to play a triple-flute.

10. Yamaha flutes, along with Bundy and Armstrong brands, are the most popular with beginning flutists and student musicians. Strong and tough, these flutes withstand rough handling.