My private lessons teacher(and everyone else...) says my embrochure looks like I'm frowning. Which i have noticed. So, I tried to play like my teacher says, but I just can't.
And I've been playing like that for 4 years. My tone is quite wonderful too.
Is this a bad embrochure/habit and I should change it, or should I just keep my embrochure?
Try what your teacher is telling you. It's good to experiment with your embouchure, and find what works best and isn't just "what you've been doing" because it works to a certain degree.
That being said, a "frown" embouchure isn't necessarily bad. On the inside cover of the Taffanel and Gaubert 17 Big Daily Finger Exercises, there is a picture of Paul Taffanel playing his flute with a slight frown.
I've often been told that you should be frowning rather than smiling, but in all practicality, it's what works best for you.
Try playing in front of a mirror and experiment. Watch what your embouchure is doing and where the best sound is. Try some extreme positions and practise moving through a wide range of tones. Watching as well as listening is quite insighful.
i don't frown or smile, my embouchure is relaxed...
try this, play a tone for 4 counts, any note, then say the word flute as you end the note, as it tapers away, if your muscles drop or have to re-set to say "flute" then your embouchure is too tense, do this in front of a mirror to see...
remember, a relaxed embouchure is a relaxed tone..
Yeah...I've looked in the mirror to see it...and it's looks so strange.
I know that we're supposed to have a slight frown, but mine is...different.
I tried to do a couple of different ways of embrochure, but either no sound comes out, or I just go back to the old embrochure.
And I heard that everyone has different ways of embrochure...does it really matter what you look like as you play?
please if your tone is really good just keep your embouchure the same. why fix something that's not broken? changing it so it "looks right" at the detriment of your sound is stupid in my opinion, unless it feels strained or causes you pain.
Ideally the embouchure's purpose is in controlling the airstream. It should be able to control the airsteam's shape in height, width and in direction (blowing angle) as well in the depth of the lips.
Many flutists play with a "frown" embouchure.
The purpose again is to control the shape of the opening of the hole in the mouth.
The frown shape should be able to cause the hole to be more "-" (flat across) and with respect to efficiency, it should be in the same line with the blowing edge across the lip plate.
Alternatively, if you play with a smile embouchure, the hole will turn up on the sides thus causing the airstream to be U shaped as well. This will be wasting the air and may cause problems with tone production.
So I'd have to ask you FluteMiraHeart,
"My private lessons teacher(and everyone else...) says my embrochure looks like I'm frowning. Which i have noticed. So, I tried to play like my teacher says, but I just can't.
And I've been playing like that for 4 years. My tone is quite wonderful too."
What would be the purpose of changing your embouchure to anything else?
and what is your fute teacher telling you to do exactly?
I'd continue with your direction, learn to control the corners of your mouth to control them forward/back as well as the lips themselves.
The key to a good flute sound is to pay attention and listen, be a bit self-critical in that you try to determine whether you think that your tone is any good and if not, do something to make it better. Sure, it's safe to experiment some. In this direction, having a mirror on your stand sometimes, or recording yourself sometimes could be beneficial. I think that a big problem with musicians is that many players go through the motions of playing the flute but don't totally connect into the sound of their flute as they are playing it. So listen very well and ask yourself always in a kind and positive way, "Is this as good sounding as I can make it?" Memorize something, play it with your eyes shut and your ears open.
So, "...does it really matter what you look like as you play?"
Are you trying to play music or to attract more friends? If you are more interested in your appearance too much, you may end up sounding more like some kind of a beauty contestant doing their talent portion, .......than a musician.
my embouchure is very strange looking as I play a bit to the side, the audience doesn't care, they do care how you sound though, so if you sound good and you play nice and relaxed, then you will be fine...
I am to an ameture flautist but you should try what your teacher says. If nothing happens then stick with what youve got! Its only going to get better.
Look at James Galway he is one of the best flautists in the world and he uses a "frowny" embouchure!!!
I'll stick with what Patrick, Bilbo, Micron and others said.
Adding that an embouchure is built over time, with small changes at once. You must discover your own way to build your sound, based on what is said to you by other experienced flutists. In fact, to me, there is no "right embouchure", there is the kind of sound you persuit and acquire. The rest of it is work, work and work, search, search and search...
And it never ends... believe me :-)