“In Summer…” Ahhhh, Summer. It brings thoughts of watermelon, swimming pools, ice cream and fun. While each season encompases beauty and brings its own enjoyment, I have to admit that I love summer!! Being born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, I love the sun and the heat. Even though I moved away years ago, the summer heat brings back pleasant, carefree, childhood memories.
“The song sings itself.” People sing. Birds sing. Flutes sing. What song? What is it singing? What songs do you hear? Famous French flutist, Marcel Moyse, once said that the flute is an extension of the voice. If so, what song does your flute have to sing this summer?
Recently, while helping students make final preparations for the Federation Flute Festival, I was reminded of what is most important in making music. Is it playing all the right notes, playing the correct rhythms, playing with dynamic contrast, breathing in the right places to communicate proper phrases, using your vibrato effectively? While all of these things are important in making music, the most important thing is just that…to MAKE music…to sing through your flute.
I love to randomly play some of my favorite flute melodies from memory such as the Bach ‘Siciliano’ from Sonata in E𝄬 Major or ‘Allegro’ from Sonata in C Major, Doppler Fantaisie Pastorale Hongroise, Saint Saëns ‘Voliere’ from The Carnival of the Animals, Mozart Concerto in G or D Major, Pie in the Face Polka, or Amazing Grace, to name a few. It is times like these that I feel like the song just sings itself. I know the notes, I know the rhythms, and I know where to breathe so I can just let my heart sing through my flute and, like summer, just have fun!
So whether it’s a flute festival, wedding background music, playing for elderly people at a care center (when not during a pandemic and visitors were allowed), or simply you in your living room playing for an invisible audience, what song do you have to sing this summer?