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Glissando fingering

Alternate Fingerings, Scales, Tone, Studies, etc.

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Glissando fingering

Postby WalterSK » Wed Mar 18, 2015 11:50 am

Hi: In Bolling's Suite for Flute and Piano (1st suite), in the 5th part, Irlandaise, there's a glissando from G above the staff to the 3rd octave G. (Going into Section K, if you've got the music.) Key at that point is C major, 3/4 time, 92 b.p.m, 3rd beat-to-1st beat quarter notes. I've been knocking myself out using standard fingering, but I can never get the glissando even or fast enough.

Would most people use the standard fingering, or alternate fingerings, such as standard fingering on G through C, and then repeat that fingering but playing on the 2nd overtones from D through F, and then the standard fingering on G?

If most people would use standard fingering, I will happily return to my repetitive practice with the metronome. I just don't want to go the alternate-fingering route unnecessarily.

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Re: Glissando fingering

Postby ninjanoman » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:08 pm

Does your flute have an E-Mechanism? This makes it a lot easier to play glissandos and faster, sliding style notes, and is usually found on Intermediate and some Step-Up level flutes. Student flutes do not have this very often. If you don't have one, this could be why your glissandos aren't very fast.

The best way I find is to practice and practice going slowly and then speeding up with the standard fingerings. Often the ease of changing keys makes my fingers run away with me and the notes become uneven. This requires a lot of concentration to make sure you keep the notes together and don't let the muscle memory take over.
Hope this helps

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Re: Glissando fingering

Postby WalterSK » Thu Jun 25, 2015 1:28 pm

Thanks for the reply. My flute doesn't have the split E mechanism but does have what Sankyo calls an NEL, which is supposed to make the E more in tune.

I've been using standard fingerings and incremental adjustments of the metronome but progress is slow. I think I will concentrate on regular scales to build up speed and just leave the upward glissando out for the time being.

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Re: Glissando fingering

Postby pied_piper » Thu Jun 25, 2015 4:37 pm

I have to chime in on the comment about a split E making a glissando easier. That is just incorrect. A split E has one purpose and that is to make the third octave E speak a bit easier. A split E has NO EFFECT on making a glissando easier. Playing a good glissando like the one the OP referenced in Irlandaise is purely a matter of practicing scales. When those can be played cleanly at fast speeds, glissandos will be fast and clean. Regarding the use of overtones or alternate fingerings, there are probably some differing opinions, but frankly, during a fast glissando, do what you need to do for the best overall results.
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