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Creating an Effective Embouchure

Your lips are vibrating membranes...~ Marcel Moyse


Is the formation of your lips through which the river of air moves.

Your air, whole body, spirit, musical imagination and your instrument create your sound and your embouchure.

Every Face and Lips are one of a kind and so is the creation of your Embouchure!

Photos of many famous flute embouchures.

Learn, Look, Listen and Experiment with curiosity to hear what creates your most natural formation of your lips and your most beautiful centered sound. Look in the Mirror too!

First thing to remember about embouchure: Flexible & Air first, fast (moving), forward and flowing!


Center and even balance of the lip plate on your chin under the red of your lip.

Center your aperture opening to the center of the opening in your head joint hole.

Your Embouchure refines the air and your sound.

It is best to create a natural formation with your lips. One that has movement and is a Supple, Stable Structure that can Sculpt your Air and your Sound.

Let’s look at the main parts of the embouchure, even though all parts work together, in concert to create your embouchure.

Top /Upper Lip:

Aims and directs the Angle of the Air across and down into the flute.

Lip Push Pups & Rabbit Face in these diagrams at the right.

Top Lip:

Press straight down from the sides of the nostrils, sides of white upper lip against top of eye teeth and corners pressed forward and pulled to sides, with red lips rolling forward and pressed together away from teeth, forward and flat.

Creative an almond space is between the eyeteeth and the air is aiming across the hole not straight down into it.

Bottom Lip:

Lip plate connects to the chin and bottom lip connects

to the lip plate. Connections: chin, lip plate, lower lip.

Feel the wide length of your lower lip, releasing your corners.

Allow bottom lip to spill over onto the lip plate.

Imagine that there are magnets on your chin

that attract and connect your lip to the lip plate.

Place your finger under red of lip on your chin shelf.

This will help you feel and be sensitive to your connection.

Then place your bottom lip on the chin shelf.

Bottom lip curls out & forward, use the inner, inside wet membrane of the lips.

Create a cushion of the air between the teeth and bottom lip.

Then the top lip then sits on the bottom lip shelf.

Next the aperture is create by the air moving between the lips.

James Galway - Embouchure Video

Christina Jennings - Embouchure


Aperture is created by your fast air stream moving between sealed moist inner lip membranes. “mmm, paah”

The moving air parts the lips... ~ Clemente Barone

Aim air through moist sealed rolled out inner lip membranes.

The fast air creates the aperture moving through the inner lips. It's a subtle but critical difference to have air creating the aperture.

Make a long sound straw, tunnel using the rolled out inner, inside wet membrane of your lips. Imagine a small coffee straw to the size of a needle thin airstream.

You can try this, with your finger undertake red of lip and on your chin, saying Ahhh, mmmm Pah or Pooh... and releasing the air.

The aperture helps to control air flow, sculpting and shaping your air stream and your sound.

When the lip tube, sound tunnel, sound straw, air reedis long it creates a warmer sound and faster air.

Examples of how the aperture may change shape for each register and dynamic.