up high in the sky- piccolo questions

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up high in the sky- piccolo questions

Post by jazzyema »

hey everyone i was wondering if you guys had any piccolo tips especially with notes above high F, i can barley get them out.. are there seperate fingerings or do i just need to work on it?

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Post by MeLizzard »

Is your piccolo in good playing condition? Even minor leaks can be more problematic than with our flutes. :D

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Post by piccylo789 »

a good piccolo player should be able to be heard over (at least) an instrumentation of 10 flutes, 15 clarinets, 10 alto saxes, 5 tenors, 3 bari's, 2 bass clarinets, 15 trumpets, 8 trombones, 4 euphoniums, and 4 tubas. and yes, they're supposed to dominate.

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Post by amhso »

get your piccolo checked...and then also...don't make your embochure (spelling) small. My teacher always tells me that you need a bigger air stream for piccolo than for flute. Also BLOW DOWN to stay in tune, and use LOTS of air. I can be heard over 7 trombones, 14 flutes, 26 clarinets, 3 trumpets (yes it's out of balance but there are no cuts in middle school band).

A piccolo should pretty much always be heard (unless in the same octave of flutes or it's low...like lower third of the range of the piccolo..)

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Post by ick27 »

A good piccolo player is foremost a good musican. It is important to be able to play loud and soft while keeping good intonation. The same is true for any instrument. I think piccolo is the loudest woodwind instrument, and it projects very strongly in the upper registers. That just makes it even more important to be able to play quiet when needed and to have good control over intonation (since there is nowhere to hide!)

Piccolo is somewhat different than flute, and has it's own challanges. In general, you should use a smaller embouchure (and airstream) placed higher up on your lip (because the headjoint and embouchure hole is smaller.) Also, you will need to get used to some different fingerings to become a really good piccolo player.

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Post by boglarka »

THe higher notes on the picc. are not necessarily easy to get out at first. I would use earplugs when attempting them (it can actually hurt to play the high notes if your hearing is good, so that might be one of the reasons you're not "going for it" on the high notes).

Some high notes speak better with alternate fingerings. E.G. high G#:

use regular high G# on the left hand, R2, R3 down on the right hand.

Many books/publications include special picc fingerings and tips. Check out Trevor Wye's Practice Book for Picc, for instance. Flute Talk has repeatedly published an extensive list of alt. fingerings for picc. Unfortunately, I don't know which year/edition it was published in last, but ask the publishers--they should know!
Kiss - Fluteland.com Teacher

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Post by flutepicc06 »

There is a fingering chart at www.wfg.woodwind.org oriented specifically toward piccolo players. There are many specialized fingerings for the piccolo that help with response, intonation and the like, and these may be worth learning, or at least experimenting with to see what works well with you and your instruments. Piccolos vary wildly, and what works on one may not work on another, so play around with the alternate fingerings a bit. Since you can hit F, start there and slur up to F#, making sure to keep your embouchure relaxed (tension in the upper range can make it extremely difficult, if not impossible to hit some of the pitches). Once you've got F# down, slur up to G and so on and so forth. When you get to B3 (taking the B in the staff to be B1), you may have a great deal of difficulty producing the note, which is an extremely common problem among piccs and is due to the size and placement of the trill toneholes. Try venting the trill only part way, or using an alternate fingering for the note, and you should be able to find a way around that little issue. You could also consider shifting the headjoint cork SLIGHTLY to the right. Unlike flute, where the marking on the cleaning rod is supposed to be centered in the embouchure hole, on piccolo, having the cork slightly off center can improve response in the third octave. Just be careful if you try this that you do not move it too much, as moving it more than just a little bit will compromise intonation. Good luck!

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