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Carnatic Flute FAQ : Frequently Asked Questions

How well the carnatic flute can play hindustani music disregarding the North Indian preference for low-pitched flutes?

A skilled Carnatic flute player can play Hindustani music wonderfully well on Carnatic flutes. Actually, because of the commonly used alternate fingerings for ga, Ga, and ma there are various ornamentation and glides you can do with Carnatic flute which would not be possible with bansuri.

What kind of bamboo do you use in making Carnatic flutes?

The bamboo I use is Asamese bamboo which is thinner than the bamboo generally used in carnatic flutes and is universally used in making North Indian Bansuri flutes. It is not detrimental to the quality in any way rather it makes the flute more responsive and brightens the tone.

Do you make a carnatic bass/base flute which is used mainly for playing bhajans in carnatic concerts?

Yes, I do make large carnatic flutes up to D bass which is a really large flute (about 36" long). My carnatic flute catalog lists only a few commonly used sizes. If you need a size not listed there, please send me an email at and I will get back to you with details promptly.

The tukkadas which are compositions played towards the end of carnatic concerts are generally played on a big bass flute, many a times with transposition of notes. For example, you can play Sindhu Bhairavi on a D# flute(2½ katta) and then use a G# bass(5½ katta) flute using the fingering of panchamam as Sa to take up the melody from one octave below.

Do you make Carnatic flute from a bamboo with one end closed naturally rather than closing it manually with a cork?

I prefer to close the end with a natural cork. That provides for better control in the fine tuning stage as you can move the cork. This eventually results in a more precisely tuned flute. In case where you use the bamboo node to close one end, the position of the closed end is permanently fixed and you lose the flexibility in fine tuning. Thereby making the overall quality a little unpredictable.

Do you have a Student model Carnatic flute?

If by Student model you mean an easy playing flute the answer is yes. I can adjust various parameters like the bore size, the tone-hole sizes, hole layout etc. to provide you with an instrument that has the best fit for you. However, if you mean a lower quality (and thereby cheaper) version, the answer is no. I give the same the kind of attention and care to each flute without any quality compromise and strive to consistently provide flutes of unmatched quality - whether it is for a student or an expert.


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