Product Review: Altissimo Flute Fingering and Trill Charts

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Altissimo Flute Fingering and Trill Charts
Nestor Herszbaum and Carolyn Nussbaum Music Company

These charts, which accompany Herszbaum’s Alternative Fingerings for the Flute, are handy and convenient to use. One of the positive aspects of these is their size; they’re large enough to be clear and hold all of the necessary information but they’re small enough to tuck into a flute case. They are a sturdy, laminated plastic, so they will presumably hold up better than paper or cardboard. (I have kept them on my desk, so I can’t attest to their durability when carried around in a flute bag.)

The fingering chart is quite comprehensive, and the actual fingering diagrams are clear. It starts on low B for those flutists who use the B foot and extends all the way up to the fourth octave G. Some of those fourth octave fingerings also include the suggestion to use the gizmo key when advantageous. It’s helpful that alternate fingerings are described, along with their pitch tendencies. These tendencies are notated with arrows, so it keeps the chart clean; there isn’t a lot of text clutter.

The trill chart is realistic; it explains that the trill between low C and D-flat as well as the trill between low D-flat and E-flat are “impractical.” The trill chart also includes instructions to utilize the C-sharp trill key for flutists who have that available. The standard option is included for those players who don’t use the C-sharp trill. The range covers from low C to the fourth octave C-sharp to D.

I was surprised by just how many times I reached for these charts, especially when checking a trill fingering in the highest part of the flute’s range. It was much quicker than checking in a book or even searching for an online chart. For this reason, I think these would be a valuable addition to any flutist’s – beginner through professional – set of tools.

Find these at Carolyn Nussbaum Music Company, www.flute4u.com.

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