The flute is one of the oldest of all instruments. The first who had emerged not simply as a musical, and their strident sounds were used to frighten enemies and evil spirits (yes, you read that right), or raise the alarm. The flutes were also associated with hunting and used as decoys, to imitate the cry of an animal.
The first flute came in many sizes, soprano, alto, tenor and bass,
The first European flutes had a terminal mouth, like the current recorders; modern flute with a mouthpiece side is called "transverse" because it is bound to parellel lips. We know that the flute was already used in China three thousand years ago, but its origin is perhaps even more distant. The instrument known to the ancient Greeks, reappeared in Europe nine hundred years ago, in the form of military fife.
In France, during the second half of the seventeenth century, a family of instrument makers , the Hotteterre, perfected many wind instruments, including the transverse flute. The new model consisted of three parts or "segments". The flutist could adjust the instrument by sliding the headrest up or down. The finger holes were made more accessible by bringing them closer and further from the hole was fitted with a "key".
In Europe during the eighteenth century, fashion was a very melodious music and pleasing to the ear, with an accompanying light. The composer discovered the flute, redesigned and enhanced, perfectly met these requirements. Often these were composers and performers themselves, as members of high society wanted to learn to play this instrument, many of whom were also teachers.
The sound of the flute cross was more powerful than the recorder, and therefore more appropriate to the orchestras of the time, more important.
Today, the pitch is the same worldwide, but in the early eighteenth century, it ranged from one place to another, and even an orchestra to another. The flute players could not change the tone of their instrument, endowed as it does the flute of a fourth segment, removable and variable length. By extending the instrument, it lowered the tone, by shortening it, we shrugged. These interchangeable segments were called "body parts". But the flute still exhibited the defects that the manufacturers were determined to eliminate. Some notes, for example, were false because the hole was too far away for the fingers can reach it easily. We added new keys to try to remedy this unsatisfactory situation.
In the late eighteenth century, the instrument would find its final form through the flutist Theobald Boehm . With some modifications, the Boehm flute is the most commonly used today.
Last update : 16/03/2009 18:17
Category : - Instruments-Woods
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