Four Dimensions of Music

Playing music involves awareness of four dimensions. When you begin to play, observe these four dimensions, and as you continue to play, remain aware of them.

Be still

Sit or stand comfortably, with good posture. Your stance should be poised and relaxed. Don’t sway or move around when you play. Excess movement is a distraction from the task at hand. Some great musicians do move around when they play, but you should avoid movement when you are learning the basics of flute playing. When you become more advanced, you can adopt movements if you think it adds something, but you will do doing it consciously, not as a nervous habit that you can’t control.


Relax your throat and take deep breaths from your diaphragm. Feel the full support of your breath as you prepare to play. Try to maintain good breath support as you continue playing. Learn to fill your lungs with short, discreet breaths.


If you are playing with other musicians, listen carefully for your cue to come in. Try to hear how your first note will sound. As you continue to play, focus outward on the overall sound that you are producing. Strive for perfect intonation and rhythm.


As you play, try to maintain awareness of the other three dimensions. It is especially important to listen and make adjustments when you hear faulty intonation or other problems. Do not become distracted by thoughts—focus your full attention on the music that you are creating.



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