North Bridge Flute Academy


North Bridge Masterclass
Fauré – Berceuse
Oginski – Polonaise
Fauré – Sicilienne
Telemann – Sonata in F
Marais – Le Basque
Quantz – Sonata in E minor – Vivace
Delibes – Morceau de Concours


Telemann Air a l'Italien
Donjon – Pan
Fauré – Morceau de Concours
Hoffmeister – Sonata in G – 1st Mvt, Allegro Assai
Gaubert – Madrigal
Rabboni - Sonata (No. 3) in E
CPE Bach - Allegro from Sonata in E Minor
Rabboni – Sonata (No. 8) in C
Gossec – Tambourin


Rabboni – Sonata (No. 7) in F
Roussel – Mr. de la Pejaudie


Roussel – Pan



GRADE 6, Lesson #2
Performance Video – DonJon – Pan

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The main focus in this charming ‘Impressionistic’ piece is about producing a warm, round sound. This should then be complimented by a good, even control of playing scales and arpeggios at different speeds..

Even though it comes across as a beautiful, slow melody, of major concern is that between the enchanting long notes, clusters of often quite quick notes are gathered and we are then inclined to panic! The only way to ensure these groupings come across as legato and even is with slow practice and by making sure that the correct quantity of air is constantly passing through the instrument.

The very first note needs anticipation. We should be poised to start, long before any sound is emitted. The opening G is in a good area of the flute, so we should enjoy it. We don’t want the opening to come across as aggressive, so I would probably opt for a gentle articulation between the lips to get the piece started. This method is similar to spitting out a grape seed, but we have to be gentle with the movement of the tongue and effectively stroke the upper lip inwards and slowly. A useful exercise for this and other variations of single articulation can be found in my book, The 28 Day Warm Up Book for all flautists…eventually! (Articulation 5, page 103).

BAR 4. Even though there is a dynamic instruction of FORTE, don’t force the sound, as the higher the notes on the flute become, the less attractive they can sound. As higher notes are more ‘audible’ (you can always hear a piccolo in an orchestra!), I would suggest a slight diminuendo up to the top G, to give it grace and charm on arrival!

BAR 16. At the end of the phrase and in diminuendo, make sure that the A on the third beat is high enough. It will have a natural tendency to be flat. Most people seem to be much more sensitive to flat sounding pitches and this is not a good moment to sound dull! There is a famous trumpet player saying, which certainly contains an element of interest and even truth, ‘better to be sharp than out of tune’!

BAR 19. Although the notes are marked ‘staccato’, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they all are required to be the same length. If the 15 articulated notes could sound more like a conversation, it would make for a more interesting shape and then something that is ostensibly quite simple, becomes a joy for the audience to listen to! Perhaps at the beginning of the bar we could use a slightly ‘Handel Soprano’ style of articulation (in other words, light) and as the bar progresses, the notes could become slightly more ‘padded’ (or longer).

BAR 20 through to BAR 22. As the flute naturally gets weaker towards the very low end of the instrument, it will sound more convincing if you can make a small crescendo in the downward arpeggios in beat three and then a diminuendo on the way back up in beat four.

BAR 24. This is the climax of the whole piece, so take your time to get up there in the last two beats of BAR 23. Even though the top F is marked FF, it should still be warm, round and affectionate. A healthy vibrato will help here. Forcing will make you sound as though you have just trodden on the tail of a passing cat!

In the following ‘ad libitum’, also take your time. We don’t want our audience to think that we are in a desperate rush to catch the next train home! Think of it more as a cadenza written for a singer, rather than something for a flute player to mechanically speed their way through. The accents in the middle of this passage should be leaned on, rather than heavily attacked.

BAR 31. As at the end of BAR 24, the turn at the end of the trill should be on the slow side.

BAR 38. Start slowly and gradually build the speed up to the third beat and then slow down again through the repeated Gs.

BAR 40. As we are in C major, we don’t want the major third (E) to be sharp. The note illustrated (a top E) has a tendency to be on the sharp side on any make of flute. To compensate for this, I play this final note without my little finger right hand on the D# key. It drops the pitch ever so slightly, but also introduces a gentler timbre at a highly appropriate moment. This might well be worth experimenting with.

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