The Simple Flute – From A to Z by Michel Debost
llustrated by Jeanne Debost-Roth
Published by Oxford University Press
Softcover, 282 pages
Michael Debost (b.1934), professor of flute at the Oberlin Conservatory from 1989 -2011 has had a long and distinguished career. Principal flute of the Orchestre de Paris from its creation in 1967 until 1989, he succeeded Jean-Pierre Rampal as professor of flute at the Paris Conservatory. He has won First prize in the International Competition, Geneva, and the Prague Spring Festival and Moscow Festival Competition, and second prize at the International Competition, Munich. Debost has made annual tours of the U.S. as a soloist since 1962. His recording credits include over 50 solo and chamber music recordings, for which he has received numerous awards, including the Premier Grand Prix-Académie Charles Cros for Chamber Music. His recording of the Telemann duets with James Galway was nominated for a Grammy Award.
Drawing from his highly praised French work, Une simple flute, distinguished flutist and teacher Michel Debost has compiled a useful and imaginative introduction to playing the flute. This alphabetically arranged compendium of advice and insight covers essential topics such as breathing, articulation, and tone, but also explores “jawboning,” “finger phrasing,” “the little devils,” and other quirky and vexing aspects of flute playing.
Full of practical advice on technique and axioms that lend moral support during tough practice sessions, The Simple Flute will be a welcome addition to any serious or novice flutist’s library. In addition, the book includes original exercises such as “Debost’s Scale Game,” making it an excellent resource for flute teachers. Debost concludes each essay with “In a nutshell” and “Please refer to” boxes that make the book easy to browse, dog-ear, and return to again and again. Offering concise, common-sense solutions for flutists of all levels, this book is an ideal reference guide on flute performance.
Table of Contents:
A-Z in Form of Introduction; Accompaniment; Accoustics; Agogic; Air column; Air speed; Alignment; Appoggiatura; Appoggio; Arpeggio; Articulation; Attacks; Beginners; Blowing Long Phrases; Breathing; Bridge; Center of Gravity; Circular Blowing; Concentration, Relaxation; Diaphragm; Dynamics; Embouchure; Etudes; Facilitating Fingerings for Passing Notes; Fingerings; Finger Phrasing; Flutes; Focus; Freedom; Grace Notes; Hands; Hierarchy of Beats; Images; Interpretation; Interpreting Accents; Intervals; Intonation, Intonations; Isometrics; Jawboning; Keys; Lips; Little Devils; Memory; Muscle Groups; Muscles-Stong and Weak; Notes; Pain and Pleasure; Paris Conservatoire and French School; Phrasing; Posture; Practicing; Programs; Quod libet; Repertoire; Resonance; Rituals; Rest; Rubato; Scale Game; Silence; Stability; Stepping-stones; Stress; Style; Technique; Tempo; Tonguing; Trills; Tuning; Unusual Trill Fingerings; Vibrato; Warm-ups; Yawning; Zeal in Form of Conclusion