Correct fingering for C2 ?

Basics of Flute Playing, Tone Production and Fingerings

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Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2010 7:24 am

Correct fingering for C2 ?

Post by fiferboy »

Dear Flute Players,

I have just started on the Yamaha Fife (YRF-21) and I can play C2 (actually C3 on the fife) in 2 ways.

Either by fingering '0 | x00 | 000x' (Thumb | Left Hand | Right Hand, x = closed, o is open) or by fingering C1 'x | xxx | xxxx' and overblowing to the next octave (first harmonic).

When playing the phrase G1 - A1 - B1 - C2, the C2 fingering is quite convenient because I only have to move my left thumb to pass from B1 to C2.

However, when playing the phrase E2 - C2 - D2 - E2, I much prefer the C1 fingering with overblowing because with the C2 fingering I have to move 5 fingers instead of 1 compared to the C1 fingering.

Now my question is whether the correct fingering for C2 depends on the melodic context as I described above or should always be played with the same standard C2 fingering.

My question concerns the fife as well as the regular flute.

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Joined: Sat May 29, 2010 4:50 pm

Post by accidentaltourist »

Interesting thought... As a simple experiment, have you checked with a tuner for pitch accuracy for the alternative fingerings? i would be interested to know the answer!

Technically the flute can be played with not only the 2nd harmonics but also above with 1st octave fingerings, similar to brass instruments (Trevor Wye uses that as an exercise). That said, the fingering chart has been "invented" to help with pitch accuracy (and also tone). As an example, the high E produced with the correct fingering is often too sharp, but the one produced with an A fingering (yes, it is possible) will be even sharper...

Maybe I will do that experiment myself! :lol:

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