Everything your want to know about:

Wind tones

Have fun with extended techniques! Using them also gives you better flute control!

Wind tones in short:

Wind sounds are sounds on the flute with additional air. It is possible to play only wind sounds or wind sounds combined with traditional sound.


Composers use different ways to indicate that you should play wind tones. Here are some possibilities:

Some composers use stripes under or over the note. No traditional flute sound should be used, only air.

Some composers use a triangle as a note head to indicate that you should play a wind tone without  traditional flute sound.

If a combination between a regular note head and a triangel is written, one should combine traditional sound with a wind tone.

Other possibilities
Most composers include a page of instructions with their piece. Sometimes composers simply write into the score what they want to hear.

Piccolo - alto flute - bass flute

This technique can be used on all flutes.

Composer information

This technique is easy to achieve on the flute. It becomes a bit more difficult if it is quickly alternated with traditional sounds or other techniques.
Wind tones without a combination of traditional sound only work in the first octave. The second octave sounds the same as the first octave.

Flute players

Studying wind tones on the flute is useful for:
– Flexible embouchure
– Improving sound quality


Example of wind sounds combined with traditional flute sound. I’m playing Xi by Karlheinz Stockhausen.


This is an example of a Flute Colors arrangement including windtones without traditional flute sound: