Susan Rawcliffe - Y Flutes

Susan Rawcliffe - Y Flutes


"Acoustically irregular forms produce unique sonic spectra. I delight in color and whimsical forms for my instruments and sound sculptures. It’s great fun, yet requires a unique command of musicality, acoustics, scholarship and hand-building ceramic skills."

Susan Rawcliffe thinks like a flute. She is an artist, researcher, performer and educator; and she also takes great pleasure in making, playing and conversing about instruments. Based in the Los Angeles area, she utilizes her deep and ongoing study of the wind instruments of MesoAmerican cultures to make unique sounds and forms from clay, always with a playful and exploratory praxis. 

To play the Y Double Flute, hang around your neck and hold the Y's arms between your fingers. Blow through the opening of its short tail, without covering the square holes on either side of the base of the tail (these are mouthpieces for two tube / flute). To change the pitch, roll your finger off and on the open end of either or both tubes. Blow harder and softer to jump the sounds higher or lower. Says Susan "Y Flutes play a range of sounds, including combination tones; these are mostly created in the ears and head through the interaction of two or more sounds. Listen carefully to hear two generating tones, the harmonics of each tube, and some combination tines that move in your head in contrary motion to the generating tones. Enjoy playing with the birds!"

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