I am recruiting band members for 6th grade band, and I just had a student come to me and say that she wanted to play flute but couldn’t because she was a singer. When I asked her to explain, she said her sister (an opera singer) said that playing a wind instrument would damage her voice. I have never heard this before. Could someone either explain this to me or tell me the student should be fine on the flute?
This sounds completely weird. I’m a singer myself and the only thing I can think of is that some beginners will articulate using the vocal folds (glottal articulation) rather than the tongue, which will cause a little unnecessary muscular tension. But as you well know, this is a bad habit that any good teacher will address long before it causes vocal problems.
Umm, no, except in the case of poor tonguing technique mentioned above. In fact, with the exception of clarinet, most pedagogy I have heard encourages warm air, which requires that the soft palette lift, much like the shape created by a vocal “ah” or a yawn, which is a vowel shape encouraged in singing.
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