A study from different perspectives

For centuries, teachers and composers have been writing studies for their students. A study or etude is a (short) piece written specifically to work on a specific topic. We are probably all familiar with the studies by Joachim Andersen, Giuseppe Gariboldi, Wilhelm Popp and Ernesto Köhler. Just some names of flutists who have written many studies for flute. And we still play those studies today. Which is funny in a way when we realize that the older pieces were written for different kinds of flutes. But most of them are still very useful for us today.

For me it is important to analyze the study before playing it. I think you should first find out what purpose the study was written for. On the other hand, that may not always be interesting as most older studies have been written for different flutes. We can also turn this idea around and ask ourselves ‘what do I want to learn from this study?’

For instance:

• working on sound,
• play a good and solid legato,
• working on staccato (movement of the tongue),
• big intervals,
• flexible embouchure,
• intonation,
• coordination
• and so on

For me starting to work on a study without asking myself this question is madness. I encourage my students to work on one topic at a time. If a study has several topics, work on each topics one at a time. And if you spent enough time on each topic separately, you can start working on more than one topic at a time.

I like working the same way with Flute Colors. I’ve made several Flute Colors arrangements of studies, not just for fun, but to get more out of one study. For example, if you want to work on staccato, it is interesting to practice key clicks or pizzicato. If you want to work on sound or embouchure, it is interesting to add harmonics, flutter tongue, pitch bending or singing & playing to your study. By exaggerating, using extended techniques, it will be much easier once you go back to the original version of the study. I find this way of studying very effective. Always study both versions side by side. Start with (a part of) the original version, then work a little bit on the same part with the Flute Colors version and go back to the original version.

On the website you will find the Flute Colors version of various studies. Free access for members.

• Go to www.flutecolors.com/pieces
• Go to ‘Category’
• Select ‘Studies’
• Download the piece and
• have fun!


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Sheet music

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