The Flute Vibrato Book


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THE FLUTE VIBRATO BOOK:  Vibrato is one of the most controversial topics in flute playing. One school of thought maintains it cannot and should not be taught; adding it will appear in the sound once the flutist has found his musical, expressive soul. Another school of thought champions that vibrato can and should be taught once the teacher hears any suggestion of natural vibrato in the student’s tone. Part of the mystique of flute vibrato has been the lack of understanding about how it is produced. Modern technology has now given us the tools to understand vibrato production. Once understood, it becomes clear how to approach the teaching of vibrato; however, discovering the artistic and expressive usage of vibrato takes a lifetime. For a video demonstration of vibrato production:


Violinists of the past have had a huge impact on modern vibrato usage. Fritz Kreisler (1875-1962) was the first violinist to use a continuous vibrato in performances even though the use of vibrato had been written about in early violin treatises. Isaac Stern (1920-2001) reflected, “The vibrato should be carefully planned.” Jascha Heifetz (1901-1987) said, “Vibrato…is part of each individual musical personality, something one is born with…expressing one’s temperament.” Most violinists learn to vibrate in their first year of study. This should be true in flute pedagogy also.

This book defines vibrato, explains how vibrato is produced, offers a wealth of information about learning and refining the skill, and its usage. Well-known melodies are used throughout so the flutist can focus on the vibrato production. Whether you developed a natural vibrato or are learning vibrato for the first time, the explanations and exercises in this book will enhance your vibrato production and control. This book is designed for flutists of all ages and levels of advancement.


Patricia George and Phyllis Avidan Louke