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Questions and Answers

Editor | February 2012

Q. Should I practice my piccolo music on the piccolo only? 

A. No. Most professional piccolo players practice their piccolo music on the flute, and at the end of their practice session, play it on the piccolo. When playing the piccolo, be sure to wear an ear plug in your right ear to protect your hearing.

Q. My high school flute player wants to attend a summer music festival. Where do we find what is available?

A. The March issue of Flute Talk will include a listing of masterclasses, workshops and music camps. Select one that is age and playing level appropriate. Some camps specialize in such different areas as orchestra or band performance, chamber music performance, or applied study.

Q. Should I sit or stand for practicing?

A. It depends what you are practicing. A good plan is to Stand, Sit, Stand. Stand for warm-ups. Sit for learning notes, perfecting difficult passages, and musical analysis. Stand for solo repertoire.

Q. What kind of cloth should I use to swab my flute?

A. Silk or linen work best because neither fiber leaves any lint. Do wash the cleaning cloth every week or so.  

Q. I am a junior in high school and want to major in flute performance in college. I have been told that during my junior year, I should visit each school I am interested in and have a preview lesson. Is this a good idea? Do I pay the teacher for the lesson?

A. Yes, the junior year is the best time to schedule preview lessons. It is better to know now rather than later that you and the teacher are a good fit. While on campus, plan to visit music classes, ensemble rehearsals, and concerts. Talk with current students to get an overall picture of the school. Each school has a different policy on students paying for the preview lesson. Ask the teacher what the policy is when you make the appointment and write a thank you note to the teacher when you return home.

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