Kingma System Flute
French Model (open hole) with Offset G Keys, Sterling Silver Brannen Pinned Mechanism, Soldered Toneholes, Brögger Acoustic, Pisoni Pads, C# trill, and B footjoint with Gizmo.
See Specs and Options Page for more information.
Body Tubing: Sterling Silver (.014", .016", .018"), 10K Rose Gold, 14K Rose Gold, and 14K White Gold
Pitch: (A-440, A-442, A-444, or A-446)
The revolutionary Kingma System Flute offers a complete quartertone scale and unique multiphonic venting. This innovative design is the result of extensive collaboration between Dutch flutemaker Eva Kingma and Bickford W. Brannen, founder and former President.
At its foundation, the Kingma System flute is a French model flute with the Brannen pinned mechanism and a C# trill. Therefore, traditional flute fingerings apply, affording the flutist opportunity to play standard flute repertoire.
What makes this flute unique are six extra keys - the "Kingma Keys" (shown below) - incorporated using Ms. Kingma's patented key-on-key system. Five of the six keys are added on top of the normally closed keys, allowing them to be opened or vented. The player is then able to produce six of the seven quartertones and multiphonic vents "missing" on the standard French model flute; the seventh quartertone is produced by opening the C# trill key and standard C key together.
This new design allows the Kingma System player to perform in remarkable new ways. The first, most obvious new possibility is to play accurate quartertone scales. While a French model flute can play quarter steps by venting the open holes and shading certain notes with alternative fingerings, the Kingma System flute is able to play a complete chromatic quartertone scale through all the registers. It is possible to half-vent every key on the Kingma System, not just the open hole keys. Therefore, a flutist can accurately play all of the quarter steps from F# to G#, for instance, and from Bb to D. This aspect of the flute makes nonwestern types of music far more accessible to any player, and it also allows some interesting effects for the jazz player.
The second acoustic advantage of this instrument is its ability to produce unique multiphonics. Because the flute is able to vent all the normally covered keys, it is able to produce chromatic progressions of multiphonics. As a result, there are some marvelous compositional opportunities built into this flute. It is possible, for example, to play "triple stops," starting with fundamentals in the low register and moving chromatically up the scale with "triple stops" as keys are sequentially vented. The practiced player can play not only chromatic scales on this flute, but chromatic quarter-steps and chromatic multiphonics as well.
The final acoustic advantage of this instrument is one that both players and listeners can appreciate: superb pitch control. For years, players have used "sensitive fingerings" on difficult notes to match pitch with other instruments. Perhaps the biggest advantage of the French model flute is that it allows the flutist to close a ring on a key in order to shade the pitch down, or to pull the finger slightly off a hole in order to shade a pitch upward. With the Kingma System flute, this possibility is developed to its fullest. With the opportunity to vent what have traditionally been closed holes, the flutist has incredible opportunities to alter pitches that would otherwise be "off." Two notes immediately come to mind: the high G and the high Ab. The Kingma System allows the player to shade these pitches down by closing rings, specifically, the F# or the G# rings, respectively. One can confidently play these notes fff without going sharp. Additionally, the Kingma System creates unique opportunities for alternative fingerings, such as on the high F#. In this case, there are at least three alternative fingerings that result in a stable high F# at various pitch/dynamic levels. For the flutist who plays in a great variety of ensembles, or circumstances, the pitch-control capabilities of this instrument are invaluable.
Flutists and composers around the world have found the Kingma System flute to offer endless artistic and musical possibilities!