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First steps with your handpan

Erste Schritte mit Deiner Handpan

You managed! So you have your first sound miracle in your hands! Maybe you also have questions about what you can do with it? By then you've probably already tried it out intuitively. Learning through play applies twice here.
Luckily, getting started playing the handpan is very easy compared to other instruments where you first have to learn fingering techniques, chords or a lot of music theory.
You can also take a look at our “Handpan Learning” section,
Here you can find online courses and books to learn the handpan.

First orientation with your handpan

Make yourself comfortable and position your handpan on your thighs or your handpan stand . You can also place them on a table or cushion in front of you. Make sure that the sound hole (Gu) on the bottom is clear so that the air can swing freely in and out of the handpan. In general: the less contact surface, the more free vibration of the material and the richer the sound.
All of our descriptions here are meant as suggestions. Be creative and explore how you can have fun and what feels right for you. We would also be happy to be inspired by you - write to us about your experiences! Everything that sounds right is right ;-) At this point you are invited to incorporate what you find out into your game as special features - there is no right or wrong.

Explore your tones and tone arrangement

In order to get in touch with the entire instrument, we have good experiences first getting to know the individual tones and their arrangement. To do this, try out two variations of the scale in a zigzag pattern as a continuous loop:

a) Lowest tone directed towards you
Position the largest pitch facing you. From here play the scale ascending left - right - left etc. and then descending backwards again.

b) Highest tone directed towards you
Position the smallest pitch facing you. From here play the scale descending right - left - right etc. and then ascending backwards again.

Discover your playing styles and touch variations

Now that you have found the scale in both directions and from two positions, you could vary your touch options a little to find out which playing styles you might already like and what you would like to work on. The more options you try out and practice, the more flexibility you gain for your subconscious, intuitive playing. A constant groove alone makes a big difference! The great thing is that each tone field offers much more than just one tone. Depending on the strength, angle and anatomical impact of your hand, different timbres and different overtone resonances are created.

Popular starting touches are with your thumb, especially for the four pitches closest to you, and with your index finger. The shorter and more precise you set your touch impulse, the more freely a tone can vibrate. Play the scale up and down again, training all fingers from the thumb to the little finger. Where does which touch feel better? How does it sound? What options do different fingers add? Experiment with your individual style.
Try using several fingers as a plane or even the palm of your hand to elicit sounds from your UFO. With a short finger slap, fist (carefully) or knuckles you can interject percussive, snare-like rhythm hits.
The field around the thing, your fundamental note, the so-called shoulder, offers scope for special effects. Bring all the ends of your fingers together on one hand and 'pat' the shoulder. Well, how does it sound?

Immerse yourself in harmonious sounds

Which tones actually go well together? What makes a beautiful melody? Here too, advanced artists should not think that you too have to play fast sequences of notes with virtuosity. It can also be seen from videos of the professionals that the most catchy pieces are a combination of several simple and beautiful runs. In this respect, just start your journey in your steps and surprise yourself with what emerges.
First of all, find the octave tone of your fundamental note. Almost every melody that you frame between your fundamental note and its octave has something rounded about it. In addition, there is another tone on almost every scale, for which the octave tone also exists. Play with the two, frame different tones and see what that does.
Now you have already classified a few sound connections. Following on from this, look for the main chords of your scale. To do this, simply play any three notes in a row in any alternation and hear how this chord sounds to you. What happens if you swap a sound from it? We invite you to research! A constant rhythm can help you as a framework for different tone changes.
Last but not least, take your first steps by trying out double touches, i.e. playing two pitches at the same time with one hand. Here too, vary your finger selection and move your double pair up and down the scale one after the other.

Congratulations so far :-) We wish you a lot of fun and enjoyment with your instrument and will continue to provide you with suggestions.
Your Handpan.World team

Getting started with your handpan – learning to play the handpan made easy

A handpan is a breathtaking instrument that brings a unique world of sound into your life. With our diverse selection of handpans, you are sure to find the perfect instrument for you. Our qualified experts will help you choose and will be happy to answer all your questions.

Customer service: Our customer service will be happy to help you with all your concerns. We also offer a money back guarantee within 14 days of purchase to ensure you are happy with your handpan purchase. We look forward to explaining the first steps with your handpan to you!

The handpan is a wonderful musical instrument that gives you the opportunity to create and manipulate your own sounds. We are a network of handpan makers who will be happy to support you in choosing your instrument and use their experience to help you learn to play the handpan. We support you with our passion for the handpan and want you to have the chance to experience this unique instrument and learn to play the handpan drum. The handpan is a wonderful instrument that allows you to express your musicality and creativity. It is a soft, gentle instrument that gives each player a very personal touch to the melodies. With its incomparable variety of tones, it inspires you to new musical ideas and makes it easy for your soul to connect with the sounds. We would be happy to help you familiarize yourself with your handpan and offer you our expertise and resources. Our goal is for you to enjoy the freedom to discover your spiritual connection to music and share it with other people.

Getting started learning to play the handpan is easy. In our handpan showrooms, our co-designers have set up local showrooms where you will always find a representative selection of instruments to try out and who will be happy to advise you on the search for your suitable handpan. Here you are well advised, you can test play instruments and once you have decided, you can buy your handpan directly or pre-order your desired tuning.

If you have decided to buy a handpan, you are in for an exciting adventure.

But what is the best way to start playing the handpan drum?

Here are a few tips to get you started.

Learn the basics: Before you start with more complex techniques, you should familiarize yourself with the basic striking techniques. Start by practicing simple rhythms and melodies to get a feel for the instrument.

Find your own style: The handpan is a very versatile instrument and offers countless possibilities for creativity and self-expression. Experiment with different playing techniques and find your own style.

Play with other musicians: The handpan is ideal for improvised music and jam sessions. Find other musicians in your area and play together.

Use online resources: There are many online resources that can help you learn handpan. From video tutorials to online courses, there are a variety of ways to improve your skills.

With these tips you will quickly make progress in playing the handpan and start your own musical adventure!

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1 Comment

  • Berni the

    Ich habe mir für den Einstieg eine China-Pan für wenig Geld besorgt (12 Felder, D-moll).
    Der Beginn funktioniert tatsächlich ziemlich einfach und ich experimentiere fast täglich.
    Vermutlich wird am Ende die Anschaffung einer wirklich gut gestimmten Pan stehen müssen, denn insbesondere in den höheren Frequenzen klingt die Reisschüssel matt und auch die Tonhöhen sind um Kleinigkeiten verschoben – das ist für mein musikalisches Gehör unschön.
    (Aber was soll man bei Low-budget auch groß erwarten?)
    D-minor kommt mir von der Klangfarbe sehr entgegen und ich frage mich, welche Anzahl an Klangfeldern überschaubar bleibt – 21 kann ich mir kaum vorstellen, da sind wohl auch Felder am lower Deck angebracht!?
    Wäre interessant, was da der Profi meint, wenn ich mir eine größere Range wünsche.
    Lg aus Ösiland

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