Last Updated on July 11, 2023 by Shanta Roy
Tonguing means to articulate sounds or different syllables. There is a misconception about the notion of tonguing.
In the tonguing technique, many learners assume they need to drive the air with their tongue. But the right idea is- you are supposed to play in a way, so the air regulates the tongue.
Since you are here to learn about double tonguing, you must know about single tonguing. Thus, we are not going to talk about the types of.
Still, we are just going to say briefly- single tonguing is the most basic form of articulation on the flute. Considering that double tonging is the more complex.
Here, we will give details on how to double tongue on the flute. People can struggle for various reasons in terms of tonguing the flute.
We will talk about the reasons so that you can relate and fix the step you are doing wrong. Let’s start with the discussion now!
Guide To Double Tonging On Flute
You can go over the steps below to know how to double tongue. But we encourage you to read the sections after the steps as well.
Because the steps are simply the directions and you will get a better explanation in the sections following the steps. Also, we will be suggesting some exercises as well to learn double tonguing. Let’s have a look at the steps.
Before you start with the double notes, you need to try playing single notes first. Considering that, give all the single notes try playing on every scale.
Let’s say you play the ‘KA’ syllable on the flute. Now, blow air steadily for the ‘KA’ with short intermissions on every scale. You blow for ‘KA’ 4 times on every scale. You can start with G-sharp.
‘KA’ is not necessarily a note. As you have learned in the basics of tonging, they simply some alphabets they you articulate through blowing into the flute.
Once you can play ‘KA’ freely, you can start sounding out double consonants. We hope you are capable of holding your embouchure and tongue in the same position too. That is a precondition for tonguing the flute.
Let’s start with the double syllables. You can practice ‘TK’ at this stage. While playing the ‘TK,’ you just blow twice. In other words, you blow for ‘T’ once and once for ‘K.’
Try to play both syllables on all the scales. You can start from G-shape like the previous task.
The next thing you need to do for double-tonging the flute is play the consonant sounds backward. That gives us. ‘KT.’ One more thing experts suggest to do is playing it from the higher to lower scale.
So, play ‘KT’ the way you played ‘TK,’ and they start from high C. This time, play ‘TKTK,’ which means you will be playing both sounds twice on a note.
When initial attempts are made, you can try sounding the consonant faster. Try going faster from higher to lower notes and vise versa. Remember to play the syllables reversed as well.
Now, playing faster is another challenge, or you can say another stage of excellence. You need to learn it at some point as you are playing the instrument.
To know how to play flute faster, kindly go over the sections below. We have provided with exercises and tips in that regard. If you wish to tongue the flute faster, you don’t want to miss the essential details here.
Tips For Playing The Flute Faster And Tongue Better
Unlike single tonguing, you need to blow a little faster in double tonguing. In single tonguing, you keep on blowing on the notes separately. Yet, the break you take between the note is minuscule.
You blow by collecting a force from your lung on a note. Then, you gather air for the next note as soon as you finish the previous note.
The break is shorter in the double tonguing. Thus, when you are blowing for double tonguing, you are playing the notes faster. Also, the notes are supposed to happen in a cluster.
For instance, you play two notes together with a shorter break, which makes one cluster. Then you take a little longer break and play another cluster.
When you learn single and double tonguing, triple tonguing is going to be easier for you. Have a look at the following tips in the bullet point. After that, read the exercises.
- Always keep your lips and tongue spread. Rounded lips and folded tongue produce slower and fuzzy sounds.
- A tense tongue will prevent you from playing the notes faster. Note that tightness in your upper body parts results in tight tonguing. Notably, the embouchure should be relaxed in order to get a loose tongue.
- Keep the tonging and your finger synced.
- The posture is also important. Don’t forget to hold your body in the right way while playing the flute. Especially, pay heed to your hands, lips, and head. Practice being relaxed in the right position.
- Also, you might be losing too much air. You might produce air and direct it into the flute. But the wrong embouchure and tongue structure is stopping the air from getting into the flute properly.
- Airspeed is the most vital part of tonguing. The speed needs to be consistent between each note. Just think about talking with a consistent airspeed. Try talking by fluctuating the air, and you will know right away what we are talking about.
Playing In Front Of A Mirror
This exercise is aimed at maintaining a stable lips structure. You are not supposed to move your lips every time you are blowing.
Instead, you should hold your lips in one position. Practice in front of a mirror and try not to change the embouchure structure while playing all the scales.
People end up with inconsistent sound quality when they move the lip from the required position every time they are blowing to tongue the flute.
Blowing Through Lips Without The Flute
This is to increase airspeed. Also, you can pay attention to the formation of the lips and tongue.
For this exercise, keep the flute aside. Then, you blow air by making a duck face, also keeping the tongue relaxed and spread.
There are a few other tasks in this exercise. First, you blow slowly, where the airspeed will be less strong. Next, you increase the airspeed where the air will be robust.
Another task is while blowing the air, you can incorporate syllables or consonant sounds. Try to create space inside the mouth. The more space you have inside the mouth, the clearer will be the air.
On A Final Note
Finally, alongside following the upper mentioned suggestions and guide, there are other things you could practice. The first note is when you lift off! So, create the required air pressure there, and let’s where does it take you. Also, keep the inside of your mouth as open as you can. 🙂