Edition XI

Dear flutists and flute enthusiasts,

We’re celebrating the 3rd year anniversary of the most unique and innovative project in the flute world with the release of the 11th edition of The Babel Flute!

Explore 21 new articles covering a wide variety of topics. This edition features 5 new authors, bringing the total number of contributors to 94 from 30 countries!

Our platform has reached over 3.5 Million views! Our audience comes from 238 countries!

In this edition:

Alexandra Petropoulos (UK) explores the decline of hobbies in modern society, where leisure activities are often judged by their economic value or productivity. Whether it’s knitting, photography, gaming, or playing the flute, there’s pressure to monetize or justify these pursuits. Alexandra questions whether it’s still acceptable to engage in hobbies purely for enjoyment and advocates for reclaiming activities like playing the flute as ends in themselves, arguing for their importance in fostering a more fulfilled and balanced life beyond economic metrics.

Anton Kushnir (Ukraine) tells us about the official creation and recognition of the “Ukrainian Flute Society”, which took place during a meeting of the Secretariat of the National All-Ukrainian Music Union on January 9, 2024. The Society will be presented during a concert at the Festival, with all events being streamed online on the Facebook page “Kyiv Flute Days.”

Anush Naroyan (Armenia-Greece)s interview with Dimitris Koundouras highlights his significant contributions to Early Music in Greece, specializing in historical flute genres and the Baroque period. Dimitris Koundouras, born in 1975 in Thessaloniki, has pursued extensive music studies across Europe, focusing on reviving and performing Baroque music while also researching Renaissance Humanism in music.

Dimitris Kountouras (Greece) explores the limited knowledge we have about the transverse flute in medieval Europe, with no surviving instruments and only references in iconography and literature. Scholars suggest its origins trace back to Byzantium, supported by references in 7th-century manuscripts and 10th-11th century iconography. Additionally, recent discoveries in music archaeology, such as the Koile flute dating back to the 2nd century BC found in Athens, shed light on the instrument’s historical presence in Greek antiquity.

Erik Nugent (USA) explores the challenges faced by flute players with hand injuries, discussing how individual hand differences and injuries can impact flute playing. It highlights the diverse nature of hand injuries and the potential solutions available, ranging from off-the-shelf options to custom modifications. Erik aims to provide insights for both affected flutists and flute technicians, hoping to help them navigate and address these challenges.

Francesco Belfiore (Italy) delves into the diverse world of flute playing, comparing the daily practice routines and techniques of baroque flute players with those of modern flute musicians. Through insights from 26 baroque flutists, he explores the nuances and challenges of practicing with these distinct instruments.

Gyula Czeloth-Csetényi (Hungary) examines the experiences of flutists in 20th-century Hungary, focusing on the period from 1945 to 1970. It discusses the impact of historical events such as Sovietization and the Kádár regime on Hungarian music, particularly through the career of flutist Lajos Dömötör (1881–1965). Dömötör’s teaching and influence on flutists like Hartai Ferenc and Jeney Zoltán illustrate the challenges and changes faced by musicians during this time of political and cultural transformation.

Dr.Heidi Kay Begay (USA) explores the intersection of podcasting and flute playing, highlighting parallels in content creation, communication skills, and post-production processes. She emphasizes the importance of intentional repertoire selection, effective communication, and embracing imperfections in both podcasting and music-making. Heidi encourages fellow flutists to explore diverse avenues for growth, recognizing the valuable lessons each experience brings to their artistic journey.

Presentation of a new album. Renowned Australian flautist Laura Chislett reunites with composer Edward Cowie after three decades to create a mesmerizing album that blends their shared musical sensibilities and deep connection to the natural world. The album, born from spontaneous improvisations, offers listeners an immersive journey through eight tracks that showcase the duo’s skilled and instinctive musical collaboration. Despite their physical distance, the creative synergy between Laura Chislett and Edward Cowie remains strong, resulting in a unique fusion of sonic colors and inventive possibilities that reflect their enduring creative bond.

Lea Pearson (USA) recounts a lesson from the Transformational Teacher Training Program, emphasizing a student’s journey to address breathing issues. Dr. Pearson employs observation, inquiry, and validation as foundational tools, rooted in somatics and student-centered approaches. The lesson highlights the importance of trauma-based practices, focusing on safety, trust, choice, collaboration, and empowerment, particularly in music training contexts where correction often overshadows creativity and self-evaluation. Through this method, the student is encouraged to explore and develop their own experience and self-concept.

Lelya Bayramoğulları (Turkey) discusses the significance of the Tashkent State Conservatory in Uzbekistan, highlighting its contributions to the music scene in the region. Established 85 years ago, the conservatory has played a crucial role in nurturing musicians, particularly in classical and folk music traditions. Despite facing challenges in the 1990s, it has regained international recognition through various programs, festivals, and tours.

Ludwig Böhm (Germany) reflects on Theobald Böhm’s legacy as a flute maker, marking the approach of his great-great-grandfather’s 230th birthday on April 9, 2024. It underscores Theobald Böhm’s commitment to superior craftsmanship, with an emphasis on quality over quantity. Prof. Dayton C. Miller’s praise of Böhm’s instruments in 1922 is noted, alongside contemporary confirmation of their excellence by flute makers and flautists.

Marco Gaudino (Italy)‘s article discusses the possibility that the sound of the flute produced by man can also include subharmonic frequencies produced by the vocal cords.

Marina Vologdina (Russia)‘s article reminisces about her chance meeting with German composer Werner Rottler in Moscow in 1985, leading to a lasting friendship until Rottler’s death in 2012. It describes their visits to historical sites in Germany and highlights Rottler’s diverse musical compositions influenced by classical and romantic traditions, as well as his collections of ensemble music for children.

Mirella Pantano (Italy) discusses the transformative power of ensemble music, focusing on the role of a flutist within a musical group. She emphasizes how music serves as a universal language that transcends cultural and linguistic barriers, fostering deep connections between musicians and audiences. Playing together is seen as the pinnacle of musical expression, requiring musicians to merge their individuality into a collective musical idea.

Onorio Zaralli (Italy) is inspired by Alessandro Manzoni’s masterpiece “I promessi sposi” (The Betrothed). He attempts to evoke the characters’ profiles through music, emphasizing their essence rather than direct description. Manzoni’s novel, hailed as a pinnacle of Italian literature, played a significant role in shaping Italian linguistic unity. Onorio Zaralli’s work reflects the enduring influence of Manzoni’s characters and narrative on artistic expression, bridging literature and music.

Rachael Simon (USA) discusses the feasibility of DIY flute repairs, highlighting the author’s journey from a college flute performance major to a professional flute repair technician. While acknowledging the possibility for individuals to fix their own flutes with sufficient experience and knowledge, Rachael emphasizes the importance of recognizing limitations without proper expertise. Drawing parallels to medical professions, she suggests approaching DIY flute repairs like “flute first aid,” where basic skills can mitigate some issues but may not address all problems.

Rik Noyce (USA) explores the concept of confidence in musical performance, delving into its origins and its practical application. He discusses how performers often struggle with confidence despite thorough preparation, attributing this struggle to the presence of an audience. Rik suggests reframing one’s perspective on performance, viewing it as an opportunity to share one’s unique perspective and passion with the audience. By trusting in the audience’s ability to appreciate the performance, he argues, performers can approach their craft with a sense of confidence and authenticity.

Tim Lane (USA) explores the relationship between sound, movement, and expression in music, emphasizing the importance of listening skills in developing musicianship. He discusses how motion-related and spatially-oriented terminology is commonly used to describe music and suggests that our responses to sound changes in music can be spatially correlated. Tim suggests visualizing sound as movement in space and creating visual representations like line drawings or music maps to enhance listening skills.

Vilma Campitelli (Italy) discusses Princess Anna Amalia of Prussia, highlighting her roles as a composer and patron of music. Despite her early interest in music, she received formal education later in life. She studied composition with J. Ph. Kirnberger and composed various works, though many are lost. Anna Amalia’s notable legacy includes her collection of over 600 manuscripts by composers such as Bach and Handel, housed in the Deutche Staatsbibliothek in Berlin. Born in Berlin, she was the daughter of King Frederick William I of Prussia and sister to King Frederick II.

Yulia Berry (USA) highlights the prolific career of composer Mikael Tariverdiev, known for his significant contributions to Soviet cinema with iconic works like “Seventeen Moments of Spring” and “The Irony of Fate.” Despite his remarkable success and numerous international awards, Tariverdiev’s life was filled with challenges, including personal betrayals and a visit to Chernobyl, painting a picture of his life akin to an adventure novel.

Discover new flute games and quizzes created by Onorio Zaralli. Test your knowledge and enjoy the fun!

Dear readers, please share your thoughts and comments on articles that you enjoy. Your comment or repost will serve as a virtual thank you!

We also have a major announcement

Dear Contributors, Loyal Readers and Supporters,

With heavy hearts, we have come to the end of our beloved magazine.

After 3 years of intense hard work and tremendous growth of the project, The Babel Flute founders have decided to part ways, leading to the difficult decision to end the project. We want to express our deepest gratitude to each and every one of you who has supported us throughout the years. Your passion for music and dedication to The Babel Flute have been the driving force behind our success.

Additionally, we wish to express gratitude to our authors for their generosity and contribution of valuable materials. Many flutists have been inspired to write new articles, enriching the global flute community, and the Babel Flute platform has helped break down language barriers. Our commitment to creating the best free platform for flutists, sharing our experience and passion for the flute has stimulated creativity and innovation in the global flute community, and we are very proud of it.

By providing a unique platform for diverse voices and perspectives, The Babel Flute fostered a culture of collaboration and learning that will continue to resonate even as we bid farewell to this chapter. We are immensely grateful for all invaluable contributions, which have left an indelible mark on the world of our beloved musical instrument, the flute.

Although this chapter is coming to a close, we hope that the memories, knowledge, and connections forged through The Babel Flute will continue to inspire and enrich the flute community worldwide.

Thank you for being a part of our incredible journey.

The Babel Flute