2014-07-23 More Ways To Improve Clarinet Playing Without Your Clarinet

More Ways To Improve Clarinet Playing Without Your Clarinet Sent Wednesday, July 23, 2014 View as plaintext

Clarinet Mentors
For clarinetists who want to perform more easily and beautifully
In This Issue                             
July 23, 2014                      
  • A Note From Michelle Anderson - Off to ClarinetFest next week!
  • Free Training - Practise Your Clarinet While Sitting On The Beach (or anywhere else) - Some helpful vacation exercises that you can do to improve hand and finger positions without your clarinet
  • Michelle Recommends - Black Silk Swab - A classy addition to your concert performances
  • Clarinet Is Easy - Complete how-to lessons for beginners and self-taught intermediate players
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A Note from Michelle Anderson

Hello  !

Welcome to the Clarinet Mentors newsletter. I try my best to share with you clarinet pointers and recommendations that help you to play the clarinet more easily. I appreciate your feedback, and it is great to know that there are so many clarinetists all over the world who are enjoying the instrument.

I really appreciate all of you who participated in the Clarinet Mentors 2nd Birthday celebration 30 Days to Better Fingering Challenge! By next newsletter, I expect that there will be many more clarinetists in the world who find it just a bit easier to play faster passages on the clarinet  I can't wait to hear how it is working for all of you.

I'm also really excited about going to ClarinetFest 2014 in Louisiana next week. I will connect with many of my clarinet friends from around the world. If you will be there, let me know, and we can meet face-to-face! I am planning on trying out lots of clarinet gadgets, meeting some great performers and teachers who I don't know yet, and reconnecting with many of my clarinet friends. I am sure that you will hear about some of my favourite new discoveries in upcoming Clarinet Mentors newsletters.

Thanks so much for being part of my Clarinet Community. I hope that you enjoy your clarinet this week!


Free Training - Improve Your Clarinet Playing (Without Your Clarinet)
Today I am continuing my theme from last newsletter of giving you some practical exercises to improve your clarinet when you are away from your clarinet. It works even if the middle of a practise session if you just want to give your mouth a break. This one will work while you are on holidays, watching a movie, or anyplace you are sitting around with your hands free.
Today's video gives you an exercise to improve your hand and finger position. It is great for improving finger flexibility and dexterity. I hope you enjoy it, and if you have any comments, please feel free to write them in the comments box below the Youtube video.
Please click on the link below, or on the photo:
Michelle Recommends: A Black Silk Swab
Most of you know that it is very important to swab your clarinet dry after each time that you play it. Leaving moisture in the instrument can damage the pads, and also the wood if you have a wooden clarinet. When you are playing in a slightly cooler environment, you will accumulate condensation much faster. You may need to swab frequently during a rehearsal or performance to keep water from dripping into any of your holes. 
I usually use what is called the "handkerchief" swab - a nice square of cotton fabric that dries out the instrument really well. However, if I am in the middle of a concert, I like to use a black silk swab. Now the colour really depends upon what kind of event you are performing in. Generally, I am wearing orchestral blacks, so the black swab fits right in. You may want to go with a bright red if your performance attire has more pizzazz. Why do I use a silk swab for performances? Two reasons: 
1) It looks nice (and yes, in performance, I think the whole package is important).
2) It is less likely to get stuck than other swabs. As you likely know, every now and then, a swab can get stuck on the register key post in your top joint. Usually this is when you are at home, and have time to deal with it. I'll never forget the time I was in the middle of a concert that called for Bb clarinets in the first half. For some reason I had warmed up on my A clarinet (which was needed after intermission), and I had it sitting on my clarinet stand. We were playing a choral mass that had lots of hard clarinet parts. My clarinet colleague and I had about 30 bars of rest, and we both reached for our swabs to do a quick dry out before a quite exposed, busy clarinet section. I watched in horror as my colleague tugged and tugged on her swab, and we realized it was firmly stuck. I was digging out my screwdriver for her to try to pry it loose while she worked frantically upon it, and nothing worked. With 2 bars of rest to go, she grabbed my A clarinet to at least have a clarinet that air could blow through. Somehow, she transposed everything on the spot a semi-tone up, and played amazingly well some very hard passages. Luckily it was one intense but relatively short movement, and then intermission. I don't know how she did it, and she admitted afterwards that she didn't know how she did it either. If it was me, I fear I would have fumbled through with a variation on the music that would have taken a classic piece well into some altered harmonically-awful sounding wonder! I vowed after that to do my best to never get a swab stuck in a concert. This silk swab does not absorb moisture as well as a cotton one, but I would rather run it through twice then test my on-the-spot transposition abilities!
Clarinet Is Easy - Your Step-by-Step Beginner Course - Now Available! (Also enjoyed by many intermediate level players)
How To Solve Your Common Clarinet Frustrations and Play Clarinet More Easily
I firmly believe that if anyone has the "recipe" for how to play clarinet, things are really relatively easy to do. Most of our frustrations come from inadvertently learning bad habits along the way. With that in mind, I have created for you a 10-lesson comprehensive course for beginners (and self-taught intermediate players) that gives you the tools to truly learn the clarinet easily, while avoiding all of the most common frustrations that can plague us. I believe that these lessons can save you hours of grief by giving you the best practise systems that have worked for thousands of clarinetists. The lessons have great content, and are presented in a video format so that you can watch them again and again. If you would like to play with more ease and have a clear understanding of the fundamentals of clarinet playing, you can get more information on the Clarinet Is Easy course here (including some free preview videos):
Click here for the free preview videos to Clarinet Is Easy
If you are curious about this, you can try these lessons with a 100% 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee. (That means that you can try a full 5 lessons before you decide if you have received great value from the course.) If it is not the right style for you, you get your tuition refunded, no problem. I invite you to try it now! Many students have received amazing results so far from this course (and you can read their comments on the order page).
About Michelle Anderson
Michelle Anderson, the founder of Clarinet Mentors,  is a professional clarinetist and teacher who currently lives in Vancouver BC. Her professional career spans  30 years and she currently plays regularly with the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, the Pacific Symphonic Wind Ensemble and the West Coast Chamber Music series. She has performed with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, the CBC Vancouver Orchestra, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet Touring Orchestra and many other groups. Michelle currently specializes in teaching adults to play clarinet more easily and quickly through online resources, and conducts the Vancouver Clarinet Choir.
Thanks for reading this biweekly newsletter. If you think a friend would enjoy this, please feel free to forward it. If they want to  enrol in the Clarinet Mentors Community, they can go to www.learnclarinetnow.com.
Helping you to find success on your instrument with proven, easy-to-follow systems that are designed to help you sound good, and feel better about your playing.

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