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Thread: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

  1. #1
    aria handel
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    Default Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    I'm in the 25th of age and i have a musical background for violin & reading notes but i stopped playing violin from about 5 years..and now i would like to start learning to play the Flute but am not sure if i can do it or i am old for starting a new instrument in this age or not...

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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    It will take more effort and time for a person who has no musical background and
    can't read notes. But if you are 50 years old and trying to play a wind instrument
    for the first time then it will take even much more effort in learning breathing
    techniques and so on.

    A wind instrument potential student should be aware of his lungs capabilities,
    lips and hygiene control and a pair of sensitive ear.

    Depending on the genuine interest created by the beginner, it is better to try the basics
    of using a recorder, the simple bamboo chinese flute, or even the wooden piccolo to have
    a feel of the difference in sound that can be produced with the proper use of lips control.

    When a 90 year old person can sit down patiently to learn how to use a computer I don't
    see why a youthful person of 25 cannot take up a wind musical instrument like the
    flute.

    Other member of the wind family like the clarinet, trumpet, tenor horn, trombone,
    alto sax including the sexy tenor saxaphone will requires much more stamina from the
    player.

    Give it a try and get a simple recorder together with a couple of Chinese flute to begin your
    new found hobby.

    Cheers!


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Just before this one has to uninstall the negativity that has been inbeded in the
    mindset.

    Saxe John reminded us that it is always wise to learn, it is God-like to create.

    One can go further to write songs, learn to sing even though you are 45 years of
    age and learn to dance even if you are 65.

    -----------------------------------------------
    The chief enemy to learning a new skill is
    laziness and bad taste about the oneself.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Hey, I'm a flautist (western concert flute), so maybe I can help you out a little.

    Firstly, the flute is different from any other wind instrument. Like forward has said, wind instruments will require lots of stamina. The flute is no exception, it will take LOTS of stamina because unlike other instruments, you blow air across, not into, the instrument.

    However, I'm 15 years old. My lungs are not fully developed yet, and they are small. In theory, if I play the flute from this age all the way till I am 50, my stamina should increase as well, because my lungs are growing bigger.

    If you have any questions about the flute, I'd be glad to answer them =)

    Cheers,
    Zexun
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Hey, I'm a flautist (western concert flute), so maybe I can help you out a little.

    Firstly, the flute is different from any other wind instrument. Like forward has said, wind instruments will require lots of stamina. The flute is no exception, it will take LOTS of stamina because unlike other instruments, you blow air across, not into, the instrument.

    However, I'm 15 years old. My lungs are not fully developed yet, and they are small. In theory, if I play the flute from this age all the way till I am 50, my stamina should increase as well, because my lungs are growing bigger.

    If you have any questions about the flute, I'd be glad to answer them =)

    Cheers,
    Zexun
    Thanks Zexun, that is first class showing your effort into community. This could be
    an everlasting efforts from people wanting to bring into the higher awareness of
    achieving happiness in community by sharing.


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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by forward View Post
    Thanks Zexun, that is first class showing your effort into community. This could be
    an everlasting efforts from people wanting to bring into the higher awareness of
    achieving happiness in community by sharing.

    Pleasure's all mine =)

    I left out one important fact. To aid (and not hinder) your progress, you should have generally thinner lips. I know I don't really have thin lips, so controlling my really high notes (with a small aperture hole for air) is slightly difficult for myself.

    Cheers,
    Zexun
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Pleasure's all mine =)

    I left out one important fact. To aid (and not hinder) your progress, you should have generally thinner lips. I know I don't really have thin lips, so controlling my really high notes (with a small aperture hole for air) is slightly difficult for myself.

    Cheers,
    Zexun
    Pressure...high pressure. Use your diaphragm. I know of a flautist (your senior) who has thick lips but plays high notes effortlessly. Of course thinner lips help.

    To TS, its never too late to learn an instrument. I know of a trombonist in Perth Concert Band who started learning the trombone 30+ years back and he's very highly skilled. He should be 90 years old now.

    For the record, a flute requires alot of stamina (to play) when compared to any brass instrument to produce a sound (nice and clean tone of course). Try holding a note and compete with a brass instrument, the brass player will outblow you. This has nothing got to do with your volume of air, its the technique behind playing a flute that requires more air. Tried before myself, gf is a flautist and i'm a trombonist.
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    and im a trumpeter lolz...

    we should have a CS band one day. im 20 now, not working and i starting to play back my trumpet. yep bought my own trumpet... lolz..

    a flute is a beautiful instrument. you tried blowing bottles before ? if you can do that then presto! first step done.

    the trick about flute is your fingering as well as air control. like all wind instruments, you have to blow and have stamina, especially for high notes.

    its said, a trumpeter can play a flute, but i cant ! but anyway, the chinese/malay/wodden flute .. the fingering is almost the same/or the same as a recorder. try out a recorder first then slowly move on.

    there are some cheap flutes out there in the market, or Yamaha series .

    look forward to you playing it

  9. #9
    aria handel
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    thank you all really appreciated so much...you all encouraged me to start even with a trial, but frankly i felt from all your replies that it's a complicated instrument that needs more than just a sensitive musical ears and much practice to go through it...but will try anyway and see if i have the enough stamina for the flute or not..hope so coz i always dreamt of playing this instrument specially as it sounds great, dreamy and very spiritual...

    I also dreamt of composing a band for all my life and performe some unique music

    thank you all again

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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Dreaming is the first step to desire. After all the encouragement from fellow musicians
    here in CS, you should not delay any longer. Go and get hold of any wind instrument and
    get started. Am pretty sure there will be more than one person who is willing to guide
    you along.

    One of my wish list is to see a musical group started. Any one keen on this idea?
    No experience, never mind, just come and socialize to learn how music can play a role
    in your pursue of photography.



    -------------------------------------------------
    Start with a growing enthusiasm
    Swim in a stream that will become a river
    Be what you want to be
    For nothing is impossible and build upon
    that number one attitude.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by tkbonz View Post
    Pressure...high pressure. Use your diaphragm. I know of a flautist (your senior) who has thick lips but plays high notes effortlessly. Of course thinner lips help.
    Yeah, I know-- I meant that it will take a lot of extra effort to make the high notes sound full.

    One situation where the pushing against your diaphragm won't work extremely well is when you need/want to vibrato. When you do-- you'll use your diaphragm, and for extremely high notes (just about the 4th octave), your vibrato will sound weird. Kind of like "thin sound, full sound, thin sound, full sound" when you push and relax etc. Other than that, yes, exerting pressure on the diaphragm is the best way to get over thick lips for high (actually, all) notes on the flute.

    Aria, you sound a little taken aback by the comments about the complicity and stamina needed. The only reason why the flute needs more stamina than the other instruments is, half (or a varying percentage) of the air you project out doesn't go into the instrument because you're blowing across. With that being said, there is not much (if any) resistance when you blow across the tone-hole, meaning that you can very easily get out of tune.

    This is where TKbonz's suggestion of applying pressure to your diaphragm makes sense. How it works is basically constricting your muscles after you've breathed in, and not allowing the diaphragm to slack. This will (hopefully) make your projection of air more controlled because of the inner resistance. That's all there is to the stamina part really.

    Oh, and the easiest way to start learning the flute is to go buy one. Go read up books on flute playing, and then do exercises with only the headjoint. After that, try playing simple melodies like nursery rhymes. I started that way in my school band as well.

    Cheers,
    Zexun

    Oh yeah,


    Flutes are awesome for photographs (Shot with window light and bounced popup flash)
    Powell Aurumite Rose-Gold headjoint. Each headjoint costs about 8k. I'll surely miss the feeling of playing on this when I graduate from my school =(
    Last edited by Headshotzx; 2nd November 2008 at 10:41 AM.
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Yeah, I know-- I meant that it will take a lot of extra effort to make the high notes sound full.

    One situation where the pushing against your diaphragm won't work extremely well is when you need/want to vibrato. When you do-- you'll use your diaphragm, and for extremely high notes (just about the 4th octave), your vibrato will sound weird. Kind of like "thin sound, full sound, thin sound, full sound" when you push and relax etc. Other than that, yes, exerting pressure on the diaphragm is the best way to get over thick lips for high (actually, all) notes on the flute.

    Aria, you sound a little taken aback by the comments about the complicity and stamina needed. The only reason why the flute needs more stamina than the other instruments is, half (or a varying percentage) of the air you project out doesn't go into the instrument because you're blowing across. With that being said, there is not much (if any) resistance when you blow across the tone-hole, meaning that you can very easily get out of tune.

    This is where TKbonz's suggestion of applying pressure to your diaphragm makes sense. How it works is basically constricting your muscles after you've breathed in, and not allowing the diaphragm to slack. This will (hopefully) make your projection of air more controlled because of the inner resistance. That's all there is to the stamina part really.

    Oh, and the easiest way to start learning the flute is to go buy one. Go read up books on flute playing, and then do exercises with only the headjoint. After that, try playing simple melodies like nursery rhymes. I started that way in my school band as well.

    Cheers,
    Zexun

    Oh yeah,


    Flutes are awesome for photographs (Shot with window light and bounced popup flash)
    Powell Aurumite Rose-Gold headjoint. Each headjoint costs about 8k. I'll surely miss the feeling of playing on this when I graduate from my school =(
    Wah...how come SASMB using more "pro" flute than SAJCMB? SAJCMB only still using the Sankio bought during my time and of course the 784s...

    The most important and basic part about about learning to play wind instruments is the breathing technique involve. Usually many players improve and reaches a plateau cause they are limited by the breathing technique used. My advice to TS is to get an instructor to teach you PROPERLY how to breathe (aka using your diaghragm).

    Someone mentioned about getting used to the fingering of a recording which is similar to those of chinese flutes etc....actually its not accurate. The fingering for a classical flute is quite different from a recorder. I can play the basic B flat scale on both a recorder and a flute...vastly different.
    Dun blame the camera...blame the one behind the viewfinder :bsmilie:
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by tkbonz View Post
    Wah...how come SASMB using more "pro" flute than SAJCMB? SAJCMB only still using the Sankio bought during my time and of course the 784s...

    The most important and basic part about about learning to play wind instruments is the breathing technique involve. Usually many players improve and reaches a plateau cause they are limited by the breathing technique used. My advice to TS is to get an instructor to teach you PROPERLY how to breathe (aka using your diaghragm).

    Someone mentioned about getting used to the fingering of a recording which is similar to those of chinese flutes etc....actually its not accurate. The fingering for a classical flute is quite different from a recorder. I can play the basic B flat scale on both a recorder and a flute...vastly different.
    Lol. Two weeks before SYF last year, Glosz came into the bandroom while we were having practice, and said "You, you and you, go outside and choose which gold headjoints you're going to use" We were like WHATTAHECK?! and he was serious. These aurumites are a joy to use, very little wind resistance at the tone hole, so it helps me with my high notes problem. Low notes don't sound as nice as other pure silver flutes, though.

    Btw, SAJC is SAJC concert band (SAJCCB) not military band

    Cheers,
    Zexun
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Lol. Two weeks before SYF last year, Glosz came into the bandroom while we were having practice, and said "You, you and you, go outside and choose which gold headjoints you're going to use" We were like WHATTAHECK?! and he was serious. These aurumites are a joy to use, very little wind resistance at the tone hole, so it helps me with my high notes problem. Low notes don't sound as nice as other pure silver flutes, though.

    Btw, SAJC is SAJC concert band (SAJCCB) not military band

    Cheers,
    Zexun
    LoL...typo. SAS is very rich...haha! Two weeks before SYF enough time to "season" meh. If you're going SAJC....DUN USE the 681/684...get the 784 or sankio. Enuff OT.
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    Default Re: Is it too late to start learning playing Flute?

    lol tkbonz, you're the one that OT mah :P

    Aria, you can buy those cheap china made flutes if you want to get into flute playing. I know a place, Rennar Music (A small shop just off Chinatown / Little India). I bought my first flute there for S$200-300 cos in my school, there were more flautists than there were newbie flutes so we had to share, but I bought my own.

    I then upgraded up a Yamaha YFL381 that I still have now. The difference is that the yamaha has better tone quality (better metal) and also a better built.

    Buying a better instrument is like buying a better lens. Depending on the player, the increase in sound quality might be drastic or very slight, but it'll definitely make it somewhat easier to play.

    Cheers,
    Zexun
    Last edited by Headshotzx; 2nd November 2008 at 03:24 PM.
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