how to Read Flute Sheet Music

Discover ways to read sheet music within minutes

How To Read Flute Sheet Music

Finding out how to read music is a really critical skill to have. But it’s also a completely different skill from actually playing the flute. So why should we handle them as one and the same! As a part of our ‘Beginner’s Guide To Learning The Flute’, we hope to present you the tools and knowledge to read music much better.

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Discover ways to read sheet music within minutes

Finding out how to read music is a really critical skill to have. But it’s also a completely different skill from actually playing the flute. So why should we handle them as one and the same! As a part of our ‘Beginner’s Guide To Learning The Flute’, we hope to present you the tools and knowledge to read music much better.

How To Read Flute Sheet Music

Should You Really Bother Learning How To Read Music?

Let’s be totally frank. Learning how to read music is actually a hard thing to do.

If you are wanting to play pop music, it’s not crucial that you discover how to read music. Having said that, if you do, you’ll find life a lot easier down the road.

It is possible to absolutely go down this path if you choose. Just understand that like riding a bicycle, reading music is really a skill you always remember – and the advantages massively outnumber the downsides.

What Is The Precise Method?

When you were learning to read and write, did your teacher treat them as the exact same task? In all probability not. Physically writing letters and learning to control a pen, is actually a different skill set than reading how individual letters join together to produce a word.

Reading music, and the whole process of learning to accomplish it is the same.

Playing the flute is actually a radically different skill from reading the sheet music in front of you. Quite a few badly skilled instructors try to teach both of these aspects together – but you know better! Master them as independent skills that overlap. That way you’ll be successful quicker.

Learn To Read Music Notation

The Treble Clef Staff

For flute, staff notation is structured around something called the treble staff. This is made up of a stave (the name for the lines) of five lines and four spaces. It is usually marked using a treble clef (the squiggly thing at the beginning of the line)!

Middle C sits in the space at the very bottom of the stave, on an imaginary line.

Notes can sit on a line or in a space. The vertical placement (height) of the note defines the pitch. The higher up the stave, the higher the pitch. If the note needs to go higher or lower than the stave lines, we add mini lines for each note that is higher or lower. These lines are called ledger lines.

Treble Clef Staff

The notes

So that we don’t have to count up from middle C to get our note, we can use a trick – and it’s as simple as remembering the word FACE…

FACE

The 5 lines of the treble staff are EGBDF. The acronyms that are popular are “Every Good Boy Does Fine” or “Every Girl Boss Does Fine.” We personally feel they are pretty terrible, and it’s far more enjoyable to make up your own!

EGBDF

Also to help give a good introduction to the total Treble Clef staff, here it is:

Treble Clef Staff

What Is The Note Length?

If we read through sheet music, we read the music notation from the left-hand side to the right. As we have already discovered which particular note to play, we now need to find out the length of time to play it for. Luckily, the printed note actually tells us this as well.

The design of the note shows you how long to play it.

  • A whole note (or if you are in the UK, it’s called a Semibreve) is an empty circle and lasts four counts.
  • A half note (or if you are in the UK, it’s called a Minim) adds a stem and lasts two counts.
  • A quarter note (or if you are in the UK, it’s called a Crotchet) fills in the circle and lasts one count.
Note length

How To Read Flute Sheet Music - Summary

That’s it!

With this information and facts, if you study it for long enough and become accustomed to knowing which line and space equal which note, you’ll become fluent in reading music in no time.

Of course, there are lots of extra factors to eventually learn – for the time being, that should give you a great head start!

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