Hi guys! Any flautists out there with any advice to offer? My eight-year-old wants to play the flute, but it may just be a notion, so I've asked a piano pupil who's about Grade 7 on the flute if he'd give him a term of lessons to see how it goes, on the understanding that I'd get another teacher if he's still keen after that. But I need an instrument. If I look on e-bay, what would I expect to pay, how do I know it'll be okay, and do you think I'm being altogether too flippant about the whole thing? (It's just that we've had 'notions' before about things and I don't want to be out a fortune till I know he's sticking with this one...)
Post by AnotherPianist on Jan 15, 2008 18:16:50 GMT
I know sarah-flute often posted about the fact that some flute teachers like to start students off on a fife. I think they're harder to get notes out of at first, but do force a correct embouchure which is why some teachers like to start with them. Of course the real advantage of this is that one can buy them for about £5.... Might be a problem if the student teacher isn't familiar with the fife though; or if the child is looking for a nice shiny silver flute .
Hi Ap! Miss you and your good arguments (in the true sense of the word...) in The Other Place. I don't think I would know a fife if I met one in my soup, never mind find a teacher for one! The Grade 7 guy I have in mind probably wouldn't either. The reason my youngster wants to play is because he thinks this guy is briliant and wants him to teach him to do what he can do. So I think I've just got to go with a flute! Not enough maturity there to see a big picture.
Dulciana - sorry for posting when I'm not going to be able to provide you with an answer to your original question either - but is the child big enough to hold a full-sized flute - you know, hand stretch and arm length, or are you going to have to find one of those which looks as if someone sat on the head and bent it over? Another option might be to look into hire-purchase schemes, if they still exist - that's how I got my oboe many moons ago - that way you can at least cut your losses if it does just prove to be one of those notions (you have my sympathies, I know those well too . My sister was going to learn the flute - but ended up doing gymnastics instead (AP will approve! ;D) - she had a fife as well as the flute; the fife looks like a cross between a recorder and a piccolo - and the mouthpiece is shaped so that the lips fit into a little cradle moulded into it, making it much easier to get a note out of it.
However, I think you're right, if the motivation is learning from this particular pupil, and he's not confident in starting with a fife, then the best thing to do is to get a flute. Unfortunately I can't give any advice about flutes at all. Anacrusis's point about hire-purchase is a good one, I think that some music shops will do this (or even just straight rental), so it may be worth looking into. You might end up paying slightly more for the flute than you could have got it buying outright; but you do get the security of not having to buy the flute if your child decides to give it up.
Thanks for your comments about my arguments , in a bit of a musical lull at the moment, and I somehow can't get myself excited to argue about tea instead .
I have seen a fife, actually! I recognised that when I saw it; I just wouldn't have known that's what it was. Appealing price too! I'm the highest bidder on a James Henry flute on ebay at the minute - £72 at the minute - but I'm not going any higher without seeing what I could buy a second hand one for in a local shop. I want to be able to sell it again without too much loss if he doesn't stick with it - but, then again, I don't want to get something that's impossible to get a note from or which sounds too horrible to want to play.
Where's the tea argument? You're getting me excited! I've missed that one....
Thanks for your replies to the flute query, folks!
Post by Steve Hopwood on Jan 19, 2008 11:23:08 GMT
Most music instrument retailers offer a rental system. Within a certain period, you can simply hand the instrument back. If you decide to buy within that period the rent is usually taken off the price.