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PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:19 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 17, 2019 12:34 pm
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In addition to of course resting the weight of the flute on my right-hand thumb, is it a legitimate technique to use my right-hand ring finger over the D hole for stability and orientation (except when this interferes with a note I'm playing), or must I only ever anchor my right-hand pinky finger on the side body of the instrument for stability and orientation?


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:50 am 
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do you mean if you're playing, say, B, you also cover the D hole with your finger, so instead of xoo|ooo, you're fingering the note xoo|oox?

while that might work for B and A, it would probably have a noticeable, negative effect on the tone and pitch of lower notes, especially F# and maybe G, so i wouldn't recommend doing that - and of course you'd have to lift your finger to play E anyway, or to roll on F#, which is adding extra unnecessary work.

instead of resting the weight on your RH thumb, you could try using the 3-point grip, so the flute is held between your chin, the base of your LH1 finger (near the knuckle), and the RH thumb, which presses into the side of the flute rather than sitting underneath it. the weight of the flute is then supported by your LH1 finger, and your chin and RH thumb provide the leverage to keep it in place. you should be able to hold the flute this way without touching it with any other fingers, including RH4, but you will probably need to anchor with RH4 to keep it stable when playing LH-only notes (B, A and G) - at least, i do.

the 3-point grip isn't the only way, or necessarily the best way to hold the flute, but i would say it's preferable to closing the RH3 hole to support it.

edit: i should add, on the simple system flute it's quite common to also use the LH thumb to support the weight of the flute, rather than resting it on the base of the LH index finger only. but if you do this, be aware you would still need to be able to lift the thumb to use the B-flat key.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2019 3:32 pm 
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Thank you, flyingparchment-

Yes, while covering the D hole with my RH3, I only play notes which don't otherwise require the RH at all, so only when playing C# ooo|oox, B xoo|oox, A xxo|oox, and G xxx|oox. I did do a comparison in front of a tuner with and without, and the difference was barely discernable.

Yes, I also use my LH thumb for support (I've no keys, so at least I don't have to worry about that). I think the reason why I migrated to the above method vs. using my RH4 is because there is (for the geometry of my hand) what feels like a pretty significant reach between the RH holes and my RH pinky feels uncomfortably short to use it as an anchor. Therefore my method has made it easier to keep everything supported and aligned over there.

All that said, I will play around with your suggestion and see how that works out.


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