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Flute/Bottom octave of B major scale


Hi, Holly!
I need to play the B major scales in 3 octaves for an audition, but I have a hard time seamlessly switching between the low B fingering and the low C# fingering in the pinky. The note speaks very well, I just have a hard time moving the pinky fast and efficiently enough. Do you have any tips so I can play my scale evenly at a brisk tempo?

Hey Lee,

I'm afraid this is one of those things that just takes practice to build the muscle memory your pinkie needs to slide precisely off the B roller and onto the C# key.  (This might seem obvious, but just to be sure, make sure you are taking advantage of the roller key and sliding your pinkie from one key to the other, not lifting it off and placing it back down.)  

What I would suggest is to set aside a little time each practice session to work on sliding back and forth from low B to low C#.  Do this slowly at first, so you have time to precisely and efficiently get your pinkie accustomed to the necessary movement, then speed it up as you get more comfortable. You can use a metronome, too, to help with keeping the tempo controlled if you want (if you don't have one, there's one for free online here).  I'd also recommend working on the low B-C and C-C# combinations while you're at it, too, so you gain comfort on all the low pinkie notes.  

Of all our fingers when we play, pinkies often feel the most awkward at first, but with regular practice, your pinkie will become much more quick and efficient.  At this point, it's just a matter of training those little muscles to do what you want.

I hope this helps - good luck on your audition!



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I've played the flute since fourth grade, graduating with my master's degree in flute performance. I have taught at local music schools, given flute lessons for over ten years, have played in and soloed with several orchestras, chamber groups, and various other ensembles. For more information about me, visit my website at I love the flute, and I love helping people, so I welcome your questions!

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