Planning to Play in Tune


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Yes it is possible to LEARN how to play in tune through the systematic approach presented in this book.
Part Number: PLTune

216 in stock

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Review from Flutist Quarterly

“This new teaching manual from Kathy Blocki offers useful, specific exercises with well-written and
effective directions for careful tuning of the flute scale, intervals, and chords. The book is divided into five sections: “Developing Flexibility,” “Just Tuning,” “Tuning Exercises for Individuals and Ensembles,” “Playing with Dynamic Changes,” and “Tuning Challenges in Flute Literature.”

An excellent chart at the end provides helpful alternate fingerings for tuning. For developing flexibility, Blocki includes exercises for pitch bending, harmonics, and developing a tone with a full spectrum of sonority and richness.

Blocki also devotes a large section of the book specifically to intonation and tones. Her composed exercises here are marvelous, because they incorporate a drone and a melody whose sounding pitches move in opposite direction from the difference tones, making it easy to capture and hear the difference tones in a balanced and “in tune” way. This section has many exercises for both the individual player with a drone and for ensembles of three or more players. Blocki presents the difference tone work
in an organized and methodical way and presents the exercises with many variations and in all keys, written out very clearly with the desired difference tones marked.

In the final section of this remarkable book, Blocki utilizes flute repertoire with specific help for problematic areas. The pieces presented are Bizet’s Menuet from L’Arlesienne Suite No. 2, Mozart’s Concerto in G Major K. 313 (first movement development section featuring chordal modulation), and the flute solo of Ravel’s Daphnis and Chloe. Problematic areas for both tuning and interpretation are very specifically marked, and alternate fingerings are included. I highly recommend this book for students, professionals, and teachers.”

—Andrea Kapell Loewy

The book begins with flexibility exercises. Playing in tune begins with having the ability to easily bend pitches. Planning to Play in Tune offers a variety of exercises that will not only develop this flexibility, but also greatly improve core tone quality. The “Full Spectrum Tone” exercises use the concepts of polyphonic singing and apply them to flute.

The Just tuning system is explained in the second section of the book.  Learning to hear difference tones is a key element of playing with excellent intonation in an ensemble. It begins with exercises that help to zero in on these quiet tones and progress to using the difference tone as a reference for being in tune.

A variety of methods of training ensembles is given in the third section.  I use these faithfully for warming up flute ensembles and find them to be highly effective.

Of course, one the most difficult aspects of playing in tune involves the use of dynamics.  An entire section of the book is dedicated to progressively mastering the art of playing in tune when tackling extreme dynamics changes.

The final section applies all the concepts to the famous flute solo in Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloé.  The harmony is discussed so that flutists are well-informed of how to listen and adjust pitch while playing with the orchestra.


Additional information

Weight 0.5 lbs
Dimensions 11 × 9 × 0.5 in

4 reviews for Planning to Play in Tune

  1. Jennifer Cooper

    This book is fantastic! My students love the difference tone exercises! Thank you for compiling it!!!

  2. August Konrad

    The title of this manual is well placed as Planning….The 3rd octave has and will continue to be a major challenge to excellence for every flutist. The tools presented were well worth the “price of admission”. Ways to manage pitch bending and methods for the use of harmonics were most noteworthy. That being said, “Planning…” for me refers to the actual use of these tools when the music calls for those difficult notes to be in tune while maintaining the melodic line.

  3. Eila Peterson

    Received this book recently, the exercises are described clearly and they are making a difference in my own sound already. I appreciate the clarity so that members of my community band can work with it on their own.

  4. Liz

    I highly recommend this book even though I have yet to get through all the exercises! The first section that I was intrigued by gave me information about difference tones that I have been searching for a very long time! My students are absolutely amazed to hear this exercise. The written descriptions are excellent (ex. how to bend the pitch) and imaginative. I have not seen a book like this on the market. Definitely worth the price. The only suggestion I would have, is to slur the exercises on pages 16-22 as well as tongue. It makes it easier to hear the difference tones.

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