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 Post subject: Flute, clarinet, oboe?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:29 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 6:38 pm
Posts: 19
Hi

Our 11 yr old daughter is showing an interest in music. Not one of her previous talents. We have a piano, but she has not really ever been interested in learning. Possibly because her older brother plays (as well as violin). Recently she announced that she would like to learn an instrument, she has been asking about the flute and the oboe.

Does anyone have any advice as to ease of learning, ease on the ears in early development and ease on the pocket regarding which instrument she should choose. I only play piano, my brother plays clarinet, which he has recommended, but then it is his instrument.

School is not helpful as music is essentially singing, which she seems to be managing quite well.

Thanks for input of any form


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:43 pm 
noisyboysy wrote:
Hi

Our 11 yr old daughter is showing an interest in music. Not one of her previous talents. We have a piano, but she has not really ever been interested in learning. Possibly because her older brother plays (as well as violin). Recently she announced that she would like to learn an instrument, she has been asking about the flute and the oboe.

Does anyone have any advice as to ease of learning, ease on the ears in early development and ease on the pocket regarding which instrument she should choose. I only play piano, my brother plays clarinet, which he has recommended, but then it is his instrument.

School is not helpful as music is essentially singing, which she seems to be managing quite well.

Thanks for input of any form


Flute is definitely much cheaper, you should be able to get a better one than a beginner would need for around £300, and also much easier to come by second hand. Oboes are quite expensive initially, fewer of them around, and quite expensive to "run" as new reeds are constantly needed, especially in the early stages when they get broken easily. Later on players make their own reeds. We have had to acquire both these instruments for various children.

The advantage of the oboe is that it sounds nicer (well, after a few years of lessons it does anyway!), and it has scarcity value so good players are highly valued for school and county orchestras etc. It is harder to play though, especially for a beginner. If she is likely to need orthodontic braces in the future oboe might also be more difficult for this reason, whereas it wouldn't matter with a flute.

I wouldn't go for a clarinet myself, but they are very popular, as are flutes.
Hope this helps.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:44 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11956
The flute is a lovely instrument - easy on the ear and cheaper than an oboe. Can she try both (for free) as the techniques are very different?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:47 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2007 4:20 pm
Posts: 4660
Can't advise on the playing of the insturments in question, but is there not a scheme in your area whereby (through the schools - or a local music shop) the instruments can be hired?

We have them here, they may be available where you are.

That way, she can try before you have to buy IYSWIM.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:12 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
having a daughter who has played a cello (full size one from 12) my word of advice would be ..


anything easily portable!

My personal preference of teh 3 is clarinet though


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 11:00 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2006 5:12 pm
Posts: 1301
Location: Birmingham
My Daughter in L6 has played the flute since she was about 10. She is now post Grade 8 and plays in the KES/KEHS School Orchestra and Birmingham School Concert Orchestra.

The flute is fairly easy to pick up, but it is a very popular instrument, so if she is keen to play in ensembles etc then you have to achieve quite a good standard.

In terms of cost, you can normally pick up a good 2nd hand starter flute for about £100-£150 (Yamaha YFL211 is often the benchmark). But this only takes them to about Grade 5 ABRSM - after that you need to shell out about £700+ to buy a flute with a solid silver headpiece(e.g Yamaha YFL 311) which will probably take them through. We were lucky as I managed to pick up a heavily discounted 'new' Yamaha flute via the web. And of course you will have music lessons (for private lessons budget £14/ 1/2 hour)

Not sure the LEA that you live in, but you should check out what the Schools Music Service offers in your area. In Birmingham (which is very good) they offer cheap specialist music lessons in schools for about £48/term and our course they offer the chance to join a huge range of emsembles (flute choirs etc) once they reach about Grade 2.

If you are really interested in the flute then I would recommend taking a look at the Flutewise web site http://www.flutewise.com
They offer some great material, ideas and magazines etc and run many suberb course for young flute players. Flutewise has James Galway as it President and the players get chances to appear with James Galway and his wife at some of their concerts. A group, including my daughter, played with James Galway on stage at Symphony Hall Birmingham a couple of years ago in Christmas Concert - great fun and of course it helped sell tickets.

Hope this helps

Footnote: the flute has proved to be great helping her save for her world challenge overseas trip next summer. She has been busking in Stratford -on-Avon with a violinist friend and they seem manage to collect about £95 each for about 3 hours effort - mainly thanks to Japanese and US tourists!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 11:26 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2007 10:30 am
Posts: 505
Location: Warwickshire
Probably not an immediate issue - but according to a friend who was a professional oboe player you can't play the oboe when your in late(ish) pregnancy because of the pressure on the diaphragm. Apparently it can induce the birth...

Otherwise if you start on the oboe it's an easy hop to the bassoon which is a very rare instrument and there are financial schemes to encourage kids play it!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 11:29 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11956
KenR,

I would dispute that you have to be good at the flute (or indeed any instrument) to be in an ensemble. In Bucks there are beginner wind bands where you can start from a novice of a few weeks then you move to junior windbands etc.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 4:38 pm 
noisyboysy wrote:
Recently she announced that she would like to learn an instrument, she has been asking about the flute and the oboe.

Does anyone have any advice as to ease of learning, ease on the ears in early development and ease on the pocket regarding which instrument she should choose. I only play piano, my brother plays clarinet, which he has recommended, but then it is his instrument.

Hi noisyboysy,

I would second your brother – the clarinet is my favourite wind instrument. [No instrument beats the flamenco guitar, of course! :wink: ]

But seriously, perhaps you should let your daughter listen to some clarinet pieces other than the flute and the oboe. How about the immortal ‘Stranger on the Shore’ by Mr. Acker Bilk?

Or maybe this one which Mr. Bilk wrote for his wife, Jean:

http://www.4shared.com/file/30286794/54 ... Bilk_.html


Or perhaps this one, which is quite appropriate at this particular time of the year:

http://www.4shared.com/file/74747518/cb ... Bilk_.html

The added advantage for your daughter, if she elects the clarinet, is that Uncle could also give her a tip or two in playing the instrument. Quite unlike my daughter for whom I’ve spent a small fortune in piano lessons over the years. Thankfully she’s past it now having secured a merit in her ABRSM Grade 8 last summer.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 5:42 pm 
Warks mum wrote:
Probably not an immediate issue - but according to a friend who was a professional oboe player you can't play the oboe when your in late(ish) pregnancy because of the pressure on the diaphragm. Apparently it can induce the birth...


Let's hope that's not an immediate issue - Noisyboysy's dear little DD is only 11!


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