Photo of Alison Melville by Tara McMullen, courtesy of the Toronto Masque Theatre.
Since 2000 I have been playing a bit of Norwegian 'willow flute,' or seljefløyte as it's known in Norwegian. I have to say, I love this flute. This traditional instrument has no fingerholes and is played using the two harmonic series produced with the tube open or closed. I only have about nine traditional tunes in my repertoire so far - lack of practise time is my biggest obstacle - but I improvise with it and create my own tunes. The willow flute now been incorporated into the Polaris instrumentarium and I occasionally use it in concerts. I own four, in different keys - three by Ånon Egeland, and one by Magnar Storbekken.
I also have a sjøfloyte, or traditional recorder, by Bodil Diesen but my traditional repertoire on that is even smaller. So far. For some wacky Nordic ringtones (thanks to Tellef Kvifte!), go to www.taragot.com.
Alison can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Banner photos: Paul Orenstein