Sunday, March 24, 2019

First Round Nielsen Watch Videos

Dear Flute Lovers,

Run don't walk oh excellent flute-lovers.
Here's the first round of this year's Nielsen competiton.
Love the Dutilleux Sonatine and the gorgeous close-up HD camera work.
Check it out; we all learn so MUCH!
Here is the link to all the videos:

Comments welcome, LOVE IT!

(just noticed thumbport and lefthand friction-grip, just like me, with this incredibly musical 18 yr old fluteplayer.)

Oh, and if you want to hear a scratchy-video-tape-audio recording of me playing my first performance of the Dutilleux in 1994, go ahead (23 mb).

 Obviously I wasn't quite ready for the Nielsen. ha. But I love this style of flute writing,
oh my,
do I!

ps. Update from Dianne Winsor:

Here are the flutists who have passed to the 2nd round at the Nielsen. I may have spellings wrong as I transcribed these names quickly. They should be posted officially on the Nielsen web page soon. The competiton will resume live streaming with the 2nd round on Monday March 25th, 2019.

Josephine Olech, 24, France
Marley Eder, 27, USA
Tomasz Sierant, 23, Poland
Erica Macalli, 23, Italy
Matvey Demin, 25, Russia
Livia Duteba, 29, Hungary
Mael Marcon, 22, France
Marianna Zolnacz, 19, Poland
Rafael Adobas, 21, Spain
Aleksandra Pleterski, 25, Slovenia
Yuan Yu, 17, China
Ruaofan Min, 24, China

All the best,  Dianne Winsor


Pre-selection; To be recorded as video and uploaded before applications close 15 October 2018

Mozart, Amadeus Wolfgang: Flute Concerto in G, KV 313 – 1st movement until measure 149 and 2nd movement until measure 37, both with cadenzas; with piano accompaniment
Andersen, Joachim: 24 Etudes for Flute, Op. 15 – No. 3. in G major
Nielsen, Carl: Flute Concerto, FS 119, 1st movement – Cadenza, bar measure 146; without accompaniment

1st Round (24 players), with piano accompaniment
Put together a program based on the choices below. Maximum performance time 30 minutes

Thomas Larcher: New piece commissioned for the competition for flute and piano, to be announced later. Approx. 5 min.

from memory;
Sancan, Pierre: Sonatine
or Dutilleux, Henri: Sonatine
or Gaubert, Philippe: Ballade

Bach, Johann Sebastian: Play one sonata from the Organ Sonatas (for trio), arranged for flute and piano by W. and G. Kirchner-Bärenreiter Verlag. In consideration of the maximum performance time, feel free to omit repeats in the Bach sonatas.
Choose between:
    BWV 525
or BWV 526
or BWV 529
or BWV 530

2nd Round (12 players), with piano accompaniment
Put together a program based on the choices below. Maximum performance time 30 minutes

Choose between the following works – and please note, you may reduce the length of a work by omitting repeats:

Lowell Lieberman: Sonata for Flute and Piano Op. 23
or Carl Reinecke: Sonata “Undine” Op. 167
or Joachim Andersen: Concertstück Op. 3 E-major
or Charles-Marie Widor: Suite Op. 34
or Franz Schubert: Introduction and variations D. 802. Repeat the sections in the A part and no repeats in the B part.
or Sigfrid Karg-Elert: Sinfonische Kanzone op. 114

Be creative! Create your personal collage by
Create and perform a 10-15 minutes collage for flute alone, and include the following points:
Your collage must consist of flute solo pieces from 1700 to 2018 in free musical dialogue and exchange with excerpts of music by Carl Nielsen – i.e. Nielsen’s solo flute piece “The Children are Playing” or excerpts of other Nielsen compositions (i.e. solos, phrases, cadenzas from the concerto, from the quintet, themes from symphonies, etc).
Feel free to include solo pieces from the entire flute repertoire but keep an emphasis on flute music from the late 20th and 21st century – e.g. Berio / Takemitsu / Ferneyhough / Pintscher. Creative new arrangements with excerpts of compositions are possible, but also entire works may be played.
The goal is to show a variety of sounds, colors and expressions of the flute instrument.
You will be asked to provide the music of your PLAYING AROUND NIELSEN for the jury prior to the competition.

Example for better understanding: Be as creative as possible by watching the time-proportions of your collage: Have at least 51% of contemporary music, about 10-20% of Nielsen’s music and the rest of any other style.

3rd Round (6 players), with chamber accompaniment, performed without conductor

Choose between the following:
Bach, Carl Philipp Emanuel: Flute Concerto in D minor, 484.1, Wq 22
or Benda, Franz: Flute Concerto in E minor L 2.4
or 3 concertos by Vivaldi, Antonio:
No. 1 in F major, La tempesta di mare
No. 2 in G minor, RV 439, La notte
No. 3 in D major, RV 428, Il gardellino

Finale (3 finalists), with orchestra, performed from memory

Mozart, Amadeus Wolfgang: Flute Concerto in G, KV 313 – 2nd and 3rd movements
Nielsen, Carl: Flute Concerto, FS 119

Live Streamed
____________end list

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Lorna McGhee teaches Daphnis

One of my absolute favourite players and teachers. Lorna McGhee teaches the Orchestral Excerpt "Daphnis et Chloe" (video

The sheetmusic (click to enlarge).

Thanks to my dear friend who sent me the link; so helpful.

Previous posts on Lorna McGhee

Masterclass videos- Teaching students

Teaching Orchestral Excerpts; Beethoven - Prokofiev

Comments welcome!
Best, Jen

Saturday, February 02, 2019

Robert Dick on Breathing

Dear Flute-lovers,

A good, new Robert Dick video on Breathing for Flutists!
Robert Dick on Preparing to Breathe (video)
Best idea: Mark an asterisk before your breath mark! The asterisk reminds you to prepare to breathe.

This is so smart and simple and easy to understand.

More ideas about breathing here: Teaching Breathing Easily

Best, Jen

Sunday, January 27, 2019

How do you know when you're not a prodigy?

Dear flute lovers,

I love a good laugh; and this is just what I needed!
Two Australian violinists react to real-life violin prodigies:

1st film: (video)

Flutists: Notice how much of the violinist's written technique shows up in OUR flute music. (in the above video no. 1, in the solo part that's written; does that look familiar? Like Doppler? Like ornate and soaring cadenzas we all know and love? ha; same period of music!)

And watch the hands of the sight-reading Australian violinists; yes, zippy fast reading of previously practiced scales and arpeggios is revealed as a primary sight-reading skill.......of course. We all knew we would one day have to sightread pieces like this that we'd never even seen or heard before!

This kind of low key humour, that's honest and about something that is so so true, is just my kind of chuckle; makes you feel normal right?

And there's more; and it gets more profound...

2nd film: (video)

Enjoy, while thinking how much this all comes back to virtuoso flute playing.
Most of us are just "normal".

Best, Jen

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Terri Sánchez's good quality flute teaching!

Dear Flute Lovers,

I found a very good, solid teaching video on the right hand pinky! Excellent explanation! Ask my students; it's exactly like watching myself teach, using exactly the same "easy-natural-released" methods. Fabulous!:

Fix your right hand pinkie position on the flute by Terri Sánchez (video)

Terri  has written a flute practicing book that I'm now going to order, read and try-out, because it sounds fun, and just the kind of thing I like to teach; warmups that are LOVELY, that's me too, :>)
and she also has a free warmup pdf (the original to the book) here. She calls it "epic" because it includes almost everything you need to check as an advanced or intermediate player. Worth a look for intermediates who are looking ahead, and of course, flute teachers will be interested in her thinking. :>)

Terri also has:

- a flute practice/advice blog full of interesting practice ideas
- a free one minute warmup pdf  for advanced flutists
- and great practice advice for College level flutists on her new Practice Junkie website (videos of interest to all levels of aspiring flutists if you want to drop a bad technique before you practice-it-in-by-mistake; like perfectionism that stiffens your neck! hint hint. haha. ):

All good stuff. Thankyou Terri for your insights and patience. You really truly HELP!

Best, Jen

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Why Music is like a Cathedral

click on jpg to enlarge

Dear Flute & Piccolo lovers,
(who are often blamed for tuning problems, even though the phenomena is really coming from somewhere else in the room, ahem, ahem) :>)

This may already be familiar to some of you, but new to me.
They are using single bass piano strings (instead of higher notes which have multiple piano-strings) in order to get a clearer picture. This also works with sand on a metal plate, but this is how the sound of an individual piano (every one is different) actually LOOKS using a petri dish covered with a light film of water: (film)

Stunning, yes? Knew it all along, didn't we? ha!

Now I see why music makes me feel like I'm standing inside a stunning architectural cathedral!!
(note that the wave shapes are dictated by the shape of the container showing them.)

More about these sound waves here: Cymatics

Contemporary German photographer and philosopher Alexander Lauterwasser has brought cymatics into the 21st century using finely crafted crystal oscillators to resonate steel plates covered with fine sand and to vibrate small samples of water in Petri dishes. His first book, Water Sound Images,[9] translated into English in 2006, features imagery of light reflecting off the surface of water set into motion by sound sources ranging from pure sine waves to music by Beethoven, ...etc.. and overtone singing. The resulting photographs of standing wave patterns are striking. Lauterwasser's book focused on creating detailed visual analogues of natural patterns ranging from the distribution of spots on a leopard to the geometric patterns found in plants and flowers, to the shapes of jellyfish and the intricate patterns found on the shell of a tortoise.


I guess that this musical geometric beauty is why:

1. Playing music jiggles our chromosomes back into place :>)

2. Two flutists creating "combination tones" sound so incredibly mathematically bizarrio that it's difficult to explain why a bass note unrelated to the melody keeps appearing and disappearing as you play.
In home practice, 'The Tuning CD' also produces these tones with one flute, if the playback volume is increased; you can have fun with Tartini Tones!

3. and why in general: Intonation can be so confusing when the flute, which has a different set of harmonic overtone geometrics, plays with other instruments like the piano; or with strings, or with brass.

All super interesting for "little Leonardos*"( * quote from Dylan Thomas). And of course, if you need help with the phenomena of Flute Tuning, here are free articles.

It's a wild wild geometric world out there! :>D

Comments welcome.

Enjoy some more musical circles here in these clips:

Visual Score for Vermont Counterpoint from Matt Gilbert on Vimeo.


The above film of 12 cellists is from October 2017.


Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Vivaldi too early to show piccoloist's real stuff

Dear Flute and Piccolo lovers,

Gudrun Hinze is not only a fabulous arranger of amazing flute quintet music, but she's also one excellent thinker! "Playing Vivaldi is like wearing a costume and mask at a job interview."

In this video, with English subtitles, she describes why Vivaldi C Major is not the best required piece for piccolos in orchestral auditions.
She recommends the Mozart D Major Rondo (in D KV Anhang 184) (free pdf)

Gudrun Hinze: Tutorial on Audition Requirements Piccolo

And for fun: Here is her group Quintessenz, playing Carnival of Venice

Funny story: I once met a flutist who bemoaned the fact that they had to play a picc audition really quickly and had never learned the Vivaldi C Major. They rushed to the Uni library, and took out a concerto in C Major by the correct composer, but it was the WRONG concerto in C!!!
They didn't find out til the day of the audition when everyone else was playing a different piece.
If they are reading, hopefully they will chime in and tell us whether they played the incorrect one anyway, or tried to sight-read the new one; cannot recall. Amazing tale!
Comments welcome. :>) Jen