|Other names||Third flute, tierce flute; fr: flûte à tierce; de: Terzflöte|
(open side-blown flute with fingerholes)
|written range similar to the Western concert flute, but sounding a minor third higher|
|Flute, alto flute, bass flute, piccolo|
The soprano flute (also called a third flute or tierce flute) is a type of flute, a musical instrument in the woodwind family. It is pitched in E♭, a minor third above the concert flute, and is the only member of the modern flute family that is not pitched in C or G. The pitch was set at a time such flutes substituted for the E-flat clarinet, but the instrument is now rare.
The instrument is rarely available now. A few American publications for flute choir currently include a part for E♭ (soprano) flute. In these publications, an alternative part is provided either for the C flute or for the piccolo. With the substitution of one of these more commonly found instruments, however, the distinctive colour of a treble flute sound is missing.