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Harmonics

All there is to know about Harmonics

About Harmonics

Harmonics are notes produced by overblowing a note. The notes produced by overblowing are based on the harmonic series. Each fingering allows many tones of the harmonic series to be sounded.

Flute Colors: having fun with extended techniques
to help flutists gain better control

Flute Colors: having fun with extended techniques
to help flutists gain better control

Extended techniques for better control

Adding extended techniques like Harmonics to your every day flute studies improves your overall flute control.

Download Harmonics sheet music right here from flutecolors.com

Harmonics sheet music sample

  Boehm – 12 Studies Op. 15 – No. 2

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Notation

Harmonics are notated with two notes written over each other. On the high note you’ll find a little open round.  

Harmonics1

 

 

 

The diamond shaped notes indicate the fingering you should use.  

 

 

 

 

The regular shaped notes indicate which note should sound.

   

 

 

 

Practise

Studying harmonics on the flute is useful for:
– Embouchure control
– Air control and support
– Aural skills

Picc/alto/bass

This technique can be used on all flutes.

Composers

Level:

General:   Becomes a bit more difficult:
It is easy to realize the first and second harmonic.   Higher harmonics

Notes:

  • Intonation of most harmonics is flatter than the regular fingerings.
  • Harmonic range:

harmonic series

 

 

 

 

The last two notes are very difficult for most flutists. You can transpose this range. Not on every note the whole range can be produced.

Repertoire

Composer:   Title: Album:     Publisher: Other techniques:
Berio, Luciano 1925- 2003 Sequenza I   3 Flute solo Universal Edition (UE 19957) Whistletones, Multiphonics, Keyclicks, Flatterzunge
Boulez, Pierre *1925 eux extraits du “Marteau sans Maitre”   3 Altoflute solo Universal Edition (UE 33 404) Flatterzunge
Boulez, Pierre *1925 Sonatine   1 Flute, piano Amphion Editions Musicales Flatterzunge
Brown, Elisabeth *1953 Augury   2 Flute, guitar Available from composer www.elisabethbrowncomposer.com Microtones
Cutler, Davis *1971 First snow Postcards 1 Flute solo Universal Edition (UE 33661)  
Cutler, Davis *1971 Leipzigian nights Postcards 3 Flute solo Universal Editions (UE 33661) Sing & play, Keyclicks, Flatterzunge, Gissando/tonebending
Cutler, Davis *1971 Pinstriped Tomatoes Postcards 3 Flute solo Universal Editions (UE 22661) Windtones, Sing & play, Flatterzunge, Glissando/tonebending
Denissow, Edison 1929- 1996 Solo für Flöte (1972)   3 Flute solo Deutscher Verlag für Musik (DvfM 8044) Multiphonics, Keyclicks, Flatterzunge, Glissando/tonebending, Quartertones
Dick, Robert *1950 Flying lessons I   3 Flute solo Multiple Breath Music Company Multiphonics, Sing & play, Keyclicks, Glissando/tonebending, Quartertones, Residutones
Dick, Robert *1950 Lookout   3 Flute solo Multiple Breath Music Company Multiphonics, Sing & play, Keyclick, Quartertones
Doppler, Albert-Franz 1821- 1883 Fantaisie Pastorale Hongroise   1 Flute, piano Schott (FTR 91)  
Fukushima, Kazuo *1930 Mei (1962)   3 Flute solo Edizioni Suvini Zerboni – Milano Keyclicks, Glissando/tonebending
Fukushima, Kazuo *1930 Requiem (1957)   3 Flute solo Edizioni Suvini Zerboni – Milano Flatterzunge
Genzmer, Harald 1909- 2007 Konzert   1 Flute, piano (red.) Schott (FTR 115)  
Gergely, Ittzés *1969 ‘Mr. Dick is thinking in terms of a blues-pattern’   3 Flute solo www.ittzesgergely.hu Multiphonics, Sing & play, Slap tongue, Trumpet embouchure
Gottsche-Niessner, Friedgund *1954 Der Traum von Eiskunstlaufen Eine kleine Tiersuite 3 3 Flutes Zimmermann (ZM 32370)  
Gottsche-Niessner, Friedgund *1954 Die Schmetterlinge Eine kleine Tiersuite 3 3 Flutes Zimmermann (ZM 32360)  
Gottsche-Niessner, Friedgund *1954 Nachtfaltergedanken   3 Flute solo Zimmermann (ZM 34960) Bamboetones, Windtones, Slap tongue
Heider, Werner *1930 70 Tonen zum Millenium Bei Gelegheid 3 Flute solo Heinrichshofen (2589) Flatterzunge
Heider, Werner *1930 Auf-Trumpf Bei Gelegheid 3 Flute solo Heinrichshofen (2589) Flatterzunge
Holliger, Heinz *1939 (é)cri(t)   3 Flute solo Schott (FTR 197) Whispertones, Flatterzunge
Holliger, Heinz *1939 Sonate (in)solit(air)e   3 Flute solo Schott (FTR 175) Whispertones, Multiphonics, Sing & play, Glissando/tonebending, Slap tongue, Quartertones, Trumpetembouchure
Honegger, Arthur 1892- 1955 Danse de la chèvre   1 Flute solo Salabert Editions  
Ibert, Jacques 1890- 1962 Concerto   1 Flute, piano (red.) Alphonso Leduc (A.L. 18761)  
Jolivet, André 1890- 1962 Cinq Incantations   3 Flute solo Boosey & Hawkes (B. & H. 19381) Flatterzunge
Jolivet, André 1905- 1974 Sonata   1 Flute, piano Heugel et Cie (H.E. 31713) Flatterzunge
Keulen, Geert van *1943 Twelve studies for flute solo   2 Flute solo Broekmans & Van Poppel (1606) Flatterzunge
Keuris, Tristan 1946- 1996 Fantasia   3 Flute solo Donemus (DON 0022) Flatterzunge
Mower, Mike *1958 Triligence   2 Flute, piano Mike Mowers Itchy fingers publications (IFP02)  
Moyse, Louis 1912- 2007 Variations on three Japanese songs   1 Flute, piano Zen-on music  
Najfar, Reza *1960 From the other stars Flute update 3 Flute solo Walter Wretschitsch & Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien Windtones, Keyclick, Faltterzunge
Najfar, Reza *1960 The fire of Mars Flute update 3 Flute solo Walter Wretschitsch & Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien Keyclicks, Flatterzunge
Najfar, Reza *1960 Valse Harmonique Flute update 3 Flute solo Walter Wretschitsch & Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien  
Offermans, Wil *1957 Drigo’s dream   3 Flute, piano Zimmermann (ZM 34510) Multiphonics, Bamboetones, Windtones, Sing & play, Keyclicks, Glissando/tonebending
Offermans, Wil *1957 Just a short version   3 2 flutes, piccolo, altoflute Zimmermann (ZM 2988) Multiphonics, Bamboetones, Windtones, Flatterzunge, Glissando/tonebending
Offermans, Wil *1957 Kagome Kagome Made in Japan 3 Flute, CD Zimmermann (ZM 34950) Sing & play
Offermans, Wil *1957 Studie no. 2: Harmonics For the contemporary flutist 3 Flute solo Zimmermann (ZM 27900)  
Offermans, Wil *1957 Studie no. 5: Multiphonics For the contemporary flutist 3 Flute solo Zimmermann (ZM 27900) Multiphonics, Windtones, Flatterzunge
Offermans, Wil *1957 Tsuru-no-Sugomori   3 Flute solo Zimmermann (ZM 33720) Multiphonics, Flatterzunge, Glissando/tonebending
Offermans, Wil *1957 Workingsong 2 Flute update 3 Flute, woodsaw Walter Wretschitsch & Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien Bamboetones, Sing & play
Pijper, Willem 1894- 1947 Sonata   1 Flute, piano Donemus (Don100) Flatterzunge
Roussel, Albert 1869- 1937 Joueurs de flûte   1 Flute, piano Broekmans & Van Poppel (1573)  
Steen, Pip van Derks, Wil *1955 * Euro suite   2 Flute, guitar Broekmans & Van Poppel (1716)  
Takemitsu, Toru *1930 Air   3 Flute solo Schott (SJ 1096) Flatterzunge
Wagendristel, Alexander *1965 Three dances Flute update 3 Flute solo Walter Wretschitsch & Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien Multiphonics, Windtones, Jetwhistle, Keyclicks, Flatterzunge, Slap tongue
Wullur, Sinta *1958 Promenade Images 3 Flute solo Donemus (DON 320) Glissando/tonebending

  Books

Author: Title: Publisher: Oter techniques:
Dick, Robert Tone Development Through Extended Techniques Multiple Breath Music Company Whistletones, Multiphincs, Bamboetones, Sing & play
Levine, Carin & Mitropoulos-Bott, Christina The techniques of flute playing Bärenreiter Whistletones, Multiphinics, Windtones, Sing & play, Jetwhistle, Keyclicks, Flatterzunge, Glissando/tonebending, Slap tongue, Quartertones, Trumpet embouchure
Pellerite, James J. A modern guide to fingerings for the flute Zalo Publications Multiphonics, Quatertones