This blog is dedicated to the sublime instruments called nose flutes and which produce the most divine sound ever. We have chosen to discard all the native models from S. Pacific and Asia, for they need fingering to be played. We'll concentrate on "buccal cavity driven" nose flutes : the well patented and trademarked metal or plastic ones, plus, by a condemnable indulgence, some wooden craft or home-made productions.

Oct 23, 2012

Bocarina packaging, by Corvus.

We recently posted about the new Bocarina branding by Corvus in Germany (this post). We got a package, here it is. I like particularly the sentence printed on the front cover: « Muzikinstrument! Kein Spielzeug im Sinne der Spielzeugrichtlinie! », meaning « Muzikinstrument! Not a toy as defined in the TSD! (Toy Safety Directives) ». I also like the « It's as if angels were singing (but unfortunately not quite as nice) ».

Then follows a comment by the Nosy Diva.

The user manual says :

The nose flute is an instrument that you can play intuitively after very short time. The narrow side is lightly held against the bottom of the nostrils. The mouth hole, which looks similar to the head of a recorder, is placed at the mouth which is opened in O-shape, both lips touching the flute. Now you exhale lightly through the nose and a sound occurs. It is important that you really exhale through the nose, not through the mouth. When the mouth position is changed, the sound changes, it's almost like singing. You can also change the tone by varying the pressure of the instrument to the nose.The mouth and the throat are the resonating chambers. After amazingly short time you will have the hang of it and will be able to play within a two-octave range. The sound of the nose flute is similar to that of a recorder. The instrument presented here is designed ergonomically and perfectly adapted to the shape of the face. It is suitable as well for beginners as for professionals. Have fun with the nose flute, the CORVUS team. ».

Miss Birdy K.'s comment:

I like about the text that the makers seem to have thought about and experimented with the instrument, and the description is well done as well as the design of the whole thing is original and joyful.
However, what I am not sure about is the comparison of singing and playing noseflute. I do not know much about this in theory but singing feels like something completely different from nose flute playing. Whistling is very similar, but singing???
This would be an interesting task to discuss.
The other statement I tend to find at least questionable i the idea of changing the tone by the pressure of the instrument to your nose. It is after midnight at the moment so I do not really dare to try that -
Well, I had to try, will tell the neighbours to send their complaints to
They are right (Corvus team, not the neighbours)! Damned! I should have known! You can change the pitch at least a semitone by just moving the instrument at your nose. With this method you can also generate tasteless trills and vibrato. Thanks to corvus, I learned something new! Nevertheless I would not recommend this as a means for playing melodies, it is much too unreliable for reaching a good intonation (the greatest challenge of this beautiful and always underestimated instrument), besides it is not possible when playing hands-free.
Apart of that: great instrument (this is not new)
nice package and instruction that match well the fun of the instrument
Good job, Corvus team!


  1. I like the positive approach to the nose flute, as it has been considered a toy for far too long.

    About the comparison with singing: I consider playing the nose flute as a combination of blowing, whistling and singing. I have noticed that when playing I actually simultaneously exhale through both my nose and mouth. I have also noticed that I am using my vocal cords and even shifting my voice box, in order to produce certain pitches and effects.

    Finally, I tend to place the instrument at various angles and move it about according to the effect I feel like creating. If I had it strapped on, I would not be able to do so, which is the reason why I normally wouldn't play handsfree.

    Using both my hands looks as if I'm playing a harmonica or a similar instrument. It actually shows people the (external) technique and reveals where the sound comes from.

    For playing handsfree I created the 'head dress', which really allows me to perform freely or accompany myself. The design also triggers my behaving seriously 'out of the box', in keeping with the instrument, the sound of it and the (deadly!)serious effect I want to create.

  2. Wow! Amazing packaging. It is attractive and very colourful. I'm glad the the Bocarina is treated as a serious music instrument and not as a toy. Just a pity they don't call it Bocarina.

  3. Dear Chris, I told you that the name should be stamped on the instrument... Yes, the packaging is right on its target!

  4. I am actually quite surprised that the packaging was made without the consent or say of the manufacturer, who in this case is also the patent holder! However, I do like several things about it, including the "be as a child" statement! Don't know how that would target the nose flute as an instrument though...

    Although I favour any object without a signature or stamp (I persisted in not even having a hallmark on my silver 'Swan'), so simply as the object itself, I have to go along with Antoine. The Froby is known as the Froby because it has this name stamped on it. The same applies to the Simmy. It is the only way to retrace the instrument, even though the Simmy is still very much in the dark...

    The 'Swan' was named simply after the logo having a swan in it, which isn't really convincing.... Only after some meticulous research by the owner of this blog was it renamed the 'W&L', after the manufacturer, which also is far from impressive...There still isn't a proper name to it, nothing like the 'Bocarina', which is a really clever and proper name!

    I would suggest, if I may, a really big and bold 'B' on the front top and the company logo on the front bottom in reverse relief, which then both provide grip to the player, and 'Bocarina' in small letters on the inside bottom, possibly with the year right under it as well.


  5. One note regarding the Swan : W & L themselves called their line of products "Schwan". Not only for the Nasenflöte, but all their products. However, it has been very appropriate to give this nickname to the nose flute until we knew the company name.

  6. Placing the flute in a slightly different angle to the face gives more possibilities in tone.Do this with two hands.

    Fixing the flute to the face limits playing severely. Be prudent with that.The operating instructions might seem too long, but are in fact well-considered and made with attention.

    Comparing the flute to a recorder (Blockflöte) is wrong. It is in fact an ocarina, technically AND in tone. The mouth taking over the function of the "ball" from the ocarina.

    I miss in the text something about the limit in ages for players. The majority of 4 year-olds will learn it. Difficulty for the younger child is the art of blowing by nose with an opened mouth.When the younger child opens the mouth it is in fact impossible for him to blow the nose.Question of maturing. Many experiments did teach me that.

    Job te Pas