Type: Aerophones > Flute > Duct.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 421.211.12
Description: The atenteben [atɛntɛbɛn] is a flute from Ghana that is carved of bamboo. It is played vertically like the European recorder. It can be played both diatonically and chromatically in the same manner. Although originally used as a traditional instrument in funeral processions.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the atenteben been used in a secular manner having classical and contemporary compositions written for it. Some musicians display a virtuosity in their ability to perform both African and Western music on the instrument.
The famous Ghanaian composer and music teacher Ephraim Amu developed the modern atenteben in the mid 1940s. He modified the flute from a transverse flute capable of playing only five notes to an end blown duct flute. The duct was added just below the node. He added two finger holes, allowing the six finger homes and a thumb whole to facilitate a playing range of two octaves. The modern atenteben is usually pitched in B♭ or C. The length of the atenteben maybe from 35 cm to 40 cm.
Citations: Bibliography: Websites: Atenteben Article By Gavin Webb / Grove Music ;