The Art of Preluding for Flutists, Op.149 by Giuseppe Gariboldi
Improvising a prelude, warming up, getting ready for performance… is an art in itself.
While it is of paramount importance to warm up the muscles involved in sound production and breathing, it is just as necessary to set the soul in vibration and ‘warm up’ one’s expressive qualities as well. Combining these two aspects of a performer’s musicality is exactly what The Art of Preluding (by the author of Dainty Studies) sets out to do with short pieces purposely designed to place emphasis on imagination, invention and tone color.
The approach is twofold and includes:
- a Prelude – to be performed rhythmically and keeping an absolutely steady tempo, in order to test expressive qualities and flexibility of tone production within the constraints of a given discursive frame.
- a Fermata – allowing for improvisation in the spirit of a free cadenza. It aims at enhancing the performer’s imagination and reinforcing the inner organization of the beat (tempo) through the use of agogic nuances.
Flutists should always endeavor to highlight the music by focusing on a full, flexible and expressive tone, and strive to shape the phrases and master the subtlest articulations.
Gariboldi’s (or my own) suggestions offer options that may be reinvented afresh with each new performance.
Again, our intended purpose is to stimulate the performer’s expressive skills, intuition, emotions and use of tone color.
Feel free to change tempi, nuances or character.
About tempi: we recommend playing lively pieces such as #3, 6, 8 and 11 rather slowly at first, in order to create a full, rich and flexible tone. Remember what you’ve always heard about the virtues of slow practice!
The systematic exploration of musical keys will prove another endless source of inspiration. Moreover, don’t hesitate to apply suggested transposition patterns to every number.The ideal flute warm-up companion, The Art of Preluding can really help you focus and relax in those few tense moments before an exam, a competition or a concert.
The Art of Preluding is a great way of developing your tone color palette to freely express your full lyrical potential!