Posts for November 2008

November 16, 2008

Take your instruments apart

I highly recommend taking your instruments apart. Here’s why: There’s no better way to understand the workings of a mechanical device like a woodwind instrument than to take it apart and put it back together again. They’re your tools. You should understand how they work. Take ownership of your instrument’s maintenance. Discover problems that need ...

November 12, 2008

Fact and fiction in woodwind teaching

A former teacher, who, I hasten to point out, I respect and admire greatly, once asked me in a lesson to “spin the air.” I hadn’t the foggiest idea what he meant. I tried a few things that I thought maybe the teacher had in mind, but none of them was right. I asked for ...

November 10, 2008

My doubling bag

Today I found myself in the embarrassing situation of arriving at a rehearsal, contrabassoon in tow, without a single contrabassoon reed. Luckily the problem was easily solved—the reeds were literally just a few moments away, and I didn’t miss a note of rehearsal. The problem, of course, is that the contra is a university-owned instrument, ...

November 1, 2008

Recital 11/3/2008

I perform my final doctoral recital on Monday. It is my third recital on my “major” instruments (flute, oboe, and saxophone); I also performed one “minor” recital (clarinet and bassoon). The major/minor instruments are somewhat arbitrary, since I’m trying to play them all equally well.
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