about the #flute-
Here’s a little bit from my experience of writing for flute.
When I was young I had a passion for understanding how different instruments were played, why they sounded the way they did etc.
When I started working professionally as an arranger I was able to watch #virtuoso flautists play inches away from where I stood.
What I gained from this was an understanding of what went into playing the flute (from the performers perspective) as well as experiencing the sound and logging it away in my memory.
When you sit down in front of an empty piece of score paper and put pencil to paper you are forced into recalling what the sound of each #instrument is…well, at least that’s the way I approached it.
Playing an instrument such as the flute is not the same as playing a sample. While sampling has improved what is missing is the nuance that the performer is trained to add…bending notes to stay in tune, skips and changes in register etc).
If you are serious about writing for an instrument- find a good teacher and let them demonstrate their instrument. Chances are they would be happy to indulge you…remember it is their passion in life. Ask what is hard to play, what is easy to play. Have them play a slow chromatic scale from the bottom of the instrument to the top. You will begin to understand the different registers are and what is physically involved in producing those notes.
By paying close attention you will build a memory bank of sound that you can call upon to inform you when you are sitting alone wondering if this note will sound better than another, or which register to place a phrase in.

I know most of you don’t have the opportunity to write for live orchestras but, believe it or not, your samples will sound better if you approach your programming from a player’s perspective rather than a keyboardist’s fingers.


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