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 Post subject: Re: Loud keyless flutes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2021 3:36 pm 
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Location: New Hampshire, USA, or Co Clare...
A Martin Doyle one of the ones with the foot that flares out on the foot like a bell on a trumpet. It was hard for me to play it without being way too loud. It did seem very unusual. It was very easy to play it very loud. I soon put it down in a minute or two as I found it difficult to do anything much but loud.

I don't want to get into an internet flaming war here, but the problem is not that the flute is limited because it's too loud That's like saying a Ferrari is too powerful and can only go fast. Doyle flutes can be played sweetly and with a lovely rounded tone. It's up to the player to supply the necessary finesse.

I have been in sessions with people playing Olwell Prattens and big-bore Hammy flutes that were played way too loud for the player's skill set. You can't fault the flute for that. Is harshness built into a flute? Or does the player give their playing the volume, bite and growl that characterizes some fluters?

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 Post subject: Re: Loud keyless flutes
PostPosted: Sat Jan 23, 2021 4:51 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 29, 2020 5:57 am
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Julia Delaney wrote:
I have been in sessions with people playing Olwell Prattens and big-bore Hammy flutes that were played way too loud for the player's skill set.


I have a Olwell nicholson with a fully lined head which, to me, feels incredibly loud and powerful. It was the only flute I had for about 20 years and just assumed they were all this way. And for 20 years I've felt like a teenager given the keys to a ferrari and without any driving lessons. As a result, I've been a pretty terrible flute player for about 20 years (stopped playing for about 15 years because of it). That's nothing to do with the flute which, since I've come own a few other flutes with different characters, I can see now for what it is - an absolutely exceptional flute which requires a lot of skill, effort and patience to play consistently well. It can be pushed hard, or it can be played sensitively, and it can be hugely expressive - whatever I am capable of, it can match.

I've learned that it's a flute that I need to earn the ability to play well. It is loud, but as you say, for the longest time, too much flute for my level of skill and ability. If I knew then what I know now, I would have started with a more quiet rudall and then eventually gotten something like the Olwell Nicholson. And a tutor!


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