Quena Master – Lesson 8

G Scale   with Third Octave of note G

The third octave of the note G on the Quena needs a bit more constant air pressure that what it is needed to play the lower register but, you got to be careful not to blow too hard as to lose the sound altogether which can easily happen., specially so while playing the second octave of F# and G . the fingering on the notes for the Third octave are exactly the same as for the second octave. except that for G on third octave  that can be played with all the holes opened or as seeing on the following picture.

How to play the exercises

We have recorded the exercises with a suggested starting tempo and we will indicate the time signature and tempo before the video.

  • Start at the suggested tempo or slower.
  • Take breaths every two to four notes at first until you can control you breath to match breath marks.
  • Memorize the notes.
  • Increase the tempo once the tempo you started at starts to get easier to perform.
  • take a break immediately  if you feel lightheaded or out of breath
  • clear your Quena of any moisture that has accumulated on the mouth piece

Exercise 1 

Jumping between Octaves

Tempo: 60 BPM (beats per minute)

Time Signature: 2/4

Watch Exercise 1

Practice Exercise 1.

Exercise 2

Jump between octaves ( three notes per beat)

Tempo: 60 BPM

Time Signature: 2/4

Watch Exercise 2

Practice Exercise 2

Exercise 3

Same as Exercise 2 but we reverse the octave where we start.

Tempo: 60 BPM

Time Signature: 2/4

Watch Exercise 3

Practice Exercise 3

Exercise 4

Four tied notes.

Tempo: 60 BPM

Time Signature: 2/4

Watch Exercise 4

Practice Exercise 4

Excercise 5

More Four tied notes

Tempo: 90 BPM

Time Signature: 2/4

Watch Exercise 5

Practice Exercise 5

Exercise 6


Tempo: 80 BPM

Time Signature: 2/4

Pay attention on how it feels to jump between finger positions on the Quena for the note G  this could be cumbersome at first but after few passes, it will start feeling more natural.

To play this exercise successfully, start by going over the notes of the arpeggio separately for each group of four notes, until it becomes easier to finger the changes of the notes on the Quena. After that, go thru the whole exercise .

as usual,

  • Start slow
  • Pay attention to finger changes for each note
  • Use the tongue to drive the air into the Quena for each note (this technique is called attack where you first use the tongue to build pressure in your mouth before sending air into the instrument it almost appears like you are spitting)
  • Take breaths as needed to finish a phrase or when you get to the breath marks.

Watch Exercise 6

Practice Exercise 6

Exercise 7

Reversed Arpeggios

Tempo: 80 BPM

Time Signature: 2/4

Watch Exercise 7

Practice Exercise 7

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