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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 6:00 am 
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Hello guys, i want to buy an irish flute, after a lot of research on this forum i have decided to try the Somers flute of 5 piece because i have read only good things about it. I have played recorders, my boehm flute and a tin whistle (i´m an amateur but i like to play when i´m bored). The question is that i don´t know if it would be better to buy a Rudall or Pratten model for a beginner like me. I have read things like pratten is more difficult to master, or that it needs more air, etc..

Another question is that i´m left handed, but i think i play my instruments normally. I use my left hand to take the upper part of my flutes (near the embochure) and the right one to take the other part. Is there any problem with left handed people and irish flutes?

Sorry for my english, i´m from Spain :)

Thank you in advance!


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 12:16 pm 
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I've played a Sommers Rudall and thought it a good flute. I've played both Rudalls and Prattens and Rudalls usually take less air. On the other hand it may take some practice to master a Rudall's low D, while Pratten low Ds typically honk more easilty. But I know nothing about the Sommers Pratten and perhaps someone familiar with it can chime in. I don't think there is any difficulty for lefties holding a flute 'normally', with the left hand on top, especially if you are already doing it with your other instruments. Perhaps some lefthanders can chime in about that too.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 2:06 pm 
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Location: Ontario, Canada
Ola,
Somers flutes are great flutes. The three prattens (5 piece with rings) my friends and I have received from Garry over the years are all "canons". Huge sound, easy to play and delrin requires no care. We all love them. As well, Garry is back in Ireland so he's in the E.U. and there's no problem shipping within the E.U.
all the best y buena suerte
Paul


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 2:19 pm 
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I've "honked" away on a Rudall copy for years, and I have heard many great players do it. In fact, if you look at many of the famous players you will find both. I have had both and found them both fine.

To answer the left handed question. I am left handed and play like a standard right handed player. It really didn't make any difference when I learned, since both hands are equally active.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 3:12 pm 
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Handedness is something I've brought up with frequency as if late. I am mixed-handed to some degree, with the right being dominant. But I play the whistle left-handed, and if I ever pick up the flute, I'll play it left-handed, too. Most people would probably play flute and whistle with the same handedness, but there could be exceptions. So, just play whichever way feels more natural to you.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 4:28 pm 
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One minor inconvenience of playing flute left handed is: If you ever do want to leap into the world of keys you will have few used options. That being said, it's a minor issue.

If a person is used to playing with the right hand on top and it is truly ingrained it may not be worth the change. But it you are starting out assuming you need to do something different because of being left handed you may be surprised how active and in concert both hands are.

I often think of a pianist. You don't often hear of a left handed piano player searching for a left handed instrument. :D With that instrument, after you get past the first few lessons of picking out tunes above middle C the aspiring player realizes both are essential.

I would think it to be a relevant question for a brass player since one hand is definitely dominate with that instrument.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 7:46 pm 
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I'd definitely recommend playing "normally" with the left hand closer to the mouth.

As for which style to choose, it's very player dependent. I started on Prattens but really didn't begin to play well till I got a Rudall-type flute. Others have had the opposite experience. Don't listen to anyone who says you "have to" play some type of flute. The only type of flute you have to play is the kind that makes you want to play more.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:15 pm 
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'The best sounding flute in the world is the one you play two hours a day.'


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:55 pm 
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I have a Somers Rudall (thank you, Blayne--Irish flute Store) and I'm sure you won't be disappointed. It is a wonderful flute. I would also say the Rudall pattern flutes are a great place to start and learn. As Jim said, they tend to take less air and are easier to drive as your embouchure develops.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 7:41 am 
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I'd prefer a bit larger holes. I only have one "proper" (wooden) flute made by David Angus and it is rather small holed and lacks a bit in "boominess" on the low notes. Still rather easy to play and very sweet second octave. But for that "honky" strong sound, I think bigger holes will have some advantage, not only because they are louder but also because the stopper can be slightly farther away from the embouchure hole which also has a big influence on the sound. I don't notice any difference in response with the larger holes, in fact my (home-made) flute with the biggest holes has the "snappiest" response and reacts very nicely to ornaments. But I have big hands, so anatomy is certainly a limiting factor.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:50 am 
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Hola! Yo tengo una Rudall hecho por Garry Somers y suena muy bien. La D al fondo del instrumento no es débil sino fuerte. La intonación es muy buena también. Garry me ha dicho que aunque la flauta Rudall que usó com modelo tiene huecos pequeños el los engrandezco un poco para que el instrumento tenga una cantidad de sonido mas grande. Estoy de acuerdo con BKWeid que es mejor empezar con este modelo y después de aprender como tocarla pasar a una Pratten si quieres. Chet

[English: Hi! I have a Garry Somers Rudall and it has a nice sound. The bottom D is not weak and but strong. The intonation is also very good. Garry told me that although the Rudall flute that he used as a model has small holes he enlarges them a bit in order to obtain a larger sound. I agree with BKWeid that it is better to begin with this model and after learning how to play it, you can go to a Pratten if you want to. Chet]


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2020 3:36 am 
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If you play a normal Boehm flute sticking out to the right then you play a right handed flute. The recommendation would be to stick with that for a Simple system flute too. Boehm flute played to the left is extremely unusual and definitely requires a custom flute.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2020 7:01 pm 
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I forgot to mention that I'm left-handed (throw, kick, write with my left hand) but play golf, flamenco guitar and flute right-handedly. There is an ornament in Irish music called the cran which I find difficult to do and I blame my poor right-hand coordination for that. On the other hand I have no trouble with cuts and rolls with the first and second fingers of my right hand and I believe these are somewhat more difficult for right-handers to do. Apart from crans (and many flute players do without them or use them very sparingly) I don't think that a left-handed person playing the flute in a right-handed manner experiences any disadvantage. [Toco la guitarra flamenca y esa mano izquierda débil me cuesta: mis picados y rasgueados no son tan buenos como los de otros guitarristas.]


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2020 7:42 pm 
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busterbill wrote:
One minor inconvenience of playing flute left handed is:



Oh,yeah as I blithered on in that post I forgot to mention I'm left handed myself.

Over the years I have played 5 string banjo, tenor banjo, mandolin, guitar and fiddle as well as concertina flutes, clarinets and whistles. I was never given the option to consider playing any as a lefty and, as I said found both hands so busy, I doubt if it would have made any difference.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2020 10:30 pm 
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viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1557

This is a classic discussion of Pratten vs Rudall. Very good information.


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