The Keyed Flute 1790 - 1850, its performance practice and chamber music repertoire with pianoforte and / or strings.

Anne Pustlauk

Onderzoeksoutput: PhD Thesis


The keyed flute or simple system flute is the type of flute used mainly throughout the 19th century. Its roots can be found in the middle of the 18th century when keys were added to one-keyed instruments in order to avoid the weaker cross fingerings (b flat, g sharp and f natural) and to enlarge the range of the instrument (c-foot). In the course of the years the keyed flute spread all over Europe. Its design changed constantly: keys were added, embouchure holes, finger holes and the bore changed and head joints were lined with metal. At the same time the way of playing the flute changed as well and different styles developed. Because of this fact only little is known today about the performance practice of that time. Nevertheless we play works and use instruments of that time. The goal of my research is to investigate all aspects that are needed for a historically informed performance practice of the simple system flute. Therefore flute methods, original instruments and chamber music repertoire were collected and analysed. In addition historical reports on flutists , concerts and other instrumental or singing methods are studied in order to complete the picture. Following this the research results are adapted to the flute playing and presented in concerts and lecture recitals. The huge number of fingerings which were discovered during the study of the flute methods revealed a big challenge for playing the simple system flute. This complex subject needs many hours of practising. Consequently I needed approximately three years until I felt capable enough to play the first public concert (the first solo concert was held on 25th March 2015). On the theoretical side, a catalogue including fingerings and chamber music repertoire for flute with pianoforte and / or strings was created, It will be presented online in October 2016 on my website. It provides also important texts from flute methods. The website contains a main part of the essential information which are needed for a thorough understanding of the performance practice of the flute of that time.
Originele taal-2English
Toekennende instantie
  • Vrije Universiteit Brussel
  • Kuijken, Barthold, Co-Promotor
  • Swinnen, Peter, Promotor
Plaats van publicatieBrussels
StatusPublished - 2016


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