The Flute (also called Venu) is one of the ancient transverse flutes. It is made from Bamboo and is a side blown instrument. The Flute is discussed as an important musical instrument in the Natya Shastra, the classic Hindu text on music and performance arts. The ancient Sanskrit texts of India describe other side blown flutes such as the murali and vamsika, but sometimes these terms are used interchangeably. A venu has six holes, is about the thickness of a thumb, and twelve fingers long. A longer murali has four holes and two hands longs. The vamsika has eight holes, between twelve and seventeen fingers long.
Unlike the Western flutes that you see in today's bands and orchestras, the Carnatic flute is made of bamboo entirely. It has a one-piece structure with a closed (knotted) end and an open end. Also, there are no fancy keys to press to get the notes out. It's all good old open holes! But, that means there are more options on transitioning between notes via fingering. The open hole system allows for a smoother transition between notes and therefore leads toward having a more fluid tone in the music being played. In other words, it's a very simple instrument with highly complex capabilities.
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We are a very open learning environment. Please stop by to talk to one of our faculty about Carnatic and Hindustani Music, the History, the Instruments and the Teaching Methods we use to inspire our students to continue this rich musical and cultural tradition. Fill out the following form to schedule a trial class. Please feel free to call us at +1.408.337.2245 or email us at info@raagaSchool.com