Do you want to learn to play flute online? Is it even possible?
If you decide to learn to play flute online, you will need to take advantage of online resources. You can’t rely on a school band director to tell you what to play or how much to practice.
It will be up to you to start and continue the journey. Are you ready to play the best instrument in the world?
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Starting the Flute
The flute is one of the most popular instruments out there. It’s also one of the most difficult instruments to play.
Getting a sound out of the flute is no easy task. For some players, it can take weeks for them to get a sound each time they pick up the flute.
Now, that’s not meant to discourage you from playing the flute.
In fact, just the opposite is true.
As you start to learn to play flute online, you’ll have a ton of resources at your disposal. There are tons of websites and blogs (like this one!) as well as video tutorials for beginners.
When you start to play flute, you should be aware of potential roadblocks like making a sound.
A private teacher can usually speed up the learning process. But what if you can’t afford private lessons?
Luckily, you can learn to play flute online. You just have to be your own teacher.
Finding an instrument
Without the help of a teacher, it can be hard to find the best flute for you. There are tons of beginner models to choose from.
And not all are created equal.
That’s right. That $100 flute on Amazon IS NOT the same as the $700 Yamaha student flute.
You definitely don’t have to drop thousands of dollars on a student flute, but be prepared to spend at least $200 on a used instrument and closer to $500 for a new flute.
If you have a local music store, ask them about rental options. Renting is usually cheaper when you first start. If you know you’ll stick with the flute, you can also buy an instrument from one of these stores.
In case your local music store doesn’t have anything, you can try buying a flute online.
I would recommend avoiding sites like Amazon or eBay. The cheap deals just aren’t worth it.
Instead, try Flute Center of New York (FCNY) or FluteWorld.
Both websites are specialty flute stores, so you know you’ll get a quality student flute for an excellent price.
There are tons of flute websites and blogs out there where you can learn to play flute online. This blog (Hannah B Flute) has information on different types of flutes as well as flute tips.
You can find other flute blogs by doing a quick Google search.
Some of my favorite flute blogs include Practice Room Revelations by JoleneFlute and Mary Hales’ flute blog.
If videos are more your speed, check out JustAnotherFlutist on YouTube.
All of these ladies have amazing advice and insight into the world of flute playing.
As far as books and method books are concerned, the flute world is full of them.
If you’re a beginner, I’d recommend the Rubank books. They’re not the best of the best. But they’re affordable and most music store carry them
As you progress, you can move to the Trevor Wye Omnibus Book. This compiles all of Trevor Wye’s flute practice books together into one book.
Other flute standards include Taffanel & Gaubert 17 Big Daily Exercises anything by Marcel Moyse.
Finding sheet music
You can find tons of sheet music online. Both FCNY and FluteWorld carry sheet music. You can also find sheet music on Amazon.
Yes, I do buy sheet music on Amazon, just not instruments.
One of my favorite collections for beginner to intermediate flutists is the Concert and Contest Collection. They have solos from all different time periods.
If you’re more advanced, then you definitely need to check out Flute Music by French Composers.
Let me know if you’d like to see a more comprehensive repertoire list for flute.
If you’re on a budget, I like looking at Flute Tunes and International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP) for free digital downloads.
I especially love Flute Tunes, because they post a new piece every day that you can use to practice sight reading.
Finding people to play with
If you’re not in school, it can be hard to find other musicians to play with.
Students have access to school bands and orchestras as well as chamber groups.
But if you’re out of school, you can still find people to play with.
I wrote a post last year about finding playing opportunities, so you can read that for more info.
A few ideas for now: check out churches or other community groups.
Lessons vs. Self Teaching
If you want to learn to play flute online, you still have to decide if you want to take flute lessons.
Tons of flute teachers offer online lessons nowadays, and you have access to teachers all over the world.
So, should you take lessons or learn on your own?
Pros of lessons
If you take flute lessons, you’ll have a teacher whose job is to guide you in your studies. They’ll be able to recommend method books, exercises, and pieces to help you grow.
Another benefit to lessons is that your teacher can be an amazing connection. If you want to get more involved in the flute world as you improve, your teacher can help you do so.
Cons of lessons
Probably the biggest con to taking private lessons is the cost. Lessons can cost anywhere from $15 to $60+ depending on the lesson length and where your teacher lives. They have to charge what they need to live.
Also, you have to schedule your lessons around your teacher. Yes, online lessons are usually more flexible than in person lessons. But if your teacher lives in another time zone, you might not get your preferred lesson time.
Pros of self teaching
When you teach yourself, you can learn at your own pace. If there’s a week where you’re really inspired, you can practice and learn more. For weeks where you’re busy with school or work, you can take a break from the flute.
Also, you can take advantage of multiple resources. You can watch video tutorials from multiple flutists. Instead of sticking to one teacher, you can learn from dozens of people.
Cons of self teaching
While you can learn at your own pace, you probably won’t learn things as quickly as if you had a teacher. Flute teachers have been in your position, so they can show you how to learn something more efficiently.
You also have the potential for learning things the wrong way. Again, teachers can show and tell you how to do something. If you learn flute on your own, you won’t have someone to correct your mistakes.
You definitely can learn to play flute online. There are dozens of websites and resources meant for flutists and flute students. You don’t have to take flute lessons to pursue the instrument.
However, you do need to be disciplined to stick with your practicing. You also might have to work a bit harder to improve than someone with in-person lessons.
Don’t let that keep you from starting the flute, though. Because, you can do anything you set your mind to.