How to Fix Your Clarinet At A Concert (or in case of emergency)

Sent Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Clarinet Mentors
For clarinetists who want to perform more easily and beautifully
In This Issue                                           May 15, 2013            
  • A Note From Michelle Anderson - An Inspiring Mother's Day Concert
  • Free Training - Quick-fix Clarinet Repair Tricks 
  • Michelle Recommends - Thread Seal Tape
  • Clarinet Is Easy - Step-by-step video lessons to help you improve your clarinet playing and save you a lot of time and frustration
A Note from Michelle Anderson

Hello Everyone!

Welcome to the Clarinet Mentors bi-weekly newsletter. 

I have had a busy couple of weeks since my last newsletter. I performed in a wonderfully inspiring Mother's Day Concert on Sunday. The first half of the concert featured 22 young student pianists who were performing recital pieces with a full orchestra. For many of these young players (who had spent weeks preparing, and were selected in a large competition), this was their first experience to play with an orchestra. Our talented conductor, Clyde Mitchell, is a genius at creating full orchestra arrangements from the pieces that the children had prepared. Many young pianists only play alone, or with their teacher. It was a treat for them to play with many other musicians. It was inspiring to all of us.

In the second half, another local piano star, Ian Parker was the featured soloist. The Parker family is legendary here in Vancouver as a talented family of performers and teachers.  His cousin, Jon Kimura Parker, is also a well-known concert pianist. He performed Rachmaninoff's Rhapsodie on a Theme Of Paganini (his mom's favourite piece) and the always-fun Rhapsody In Blue by Gerswhin. Ian is a fabulous musician, and myself, and the members of Lion's Gate Sinfonia Orchestra, really enjoyed our performance with him.

I have also been learning new recording technics. I love creating all of the videos for the Clarinet Mentors community, and I am constantly working to improve the content, as well as the audio and visual aspects of things. I appreciate all of your feedback along the way, so feel free to contact me anytime with your suggestions.

If you are new to the Clarinet Mentors community,  I welcome you to this newsletter. It comes out every two weeks, usually on Wednesday,  and contains some of my favorite clarinet pointers and ideas for you.

Enjoy your clarinet this week, and thanks for being a part of my community!

Free Training - Quick Emergency Repairs
Has Your Clarinet Ever Broken at a Rehearsal or Concert?
We never expect our instrument to break down at a performance or rehearsal, but it can happen. Regular maintenance on your instrument can help prevent surprises, but they still happen. I recommend that you find a repair person that you like and trust. If your instrument is not working properly, you may be encountering challenges in playing that are related to leaky keys on your instrument. We are quick to blame ourselves for challenges in our playing (and usually we can improve it), however, an instrument that is out of optimum playing condition can be much harder to play. If you have never had your clarinet tuned up by a pro, it might be worth having a skilled technician check it out for you.
Meanwhile, I was at a concert recently, and in putting my instrument together before the show, a cork disintegrated and came off. Yikes! Luckily, I have emergency supplies with me. I know some people who carry full repair kits. I have a miniature version that gets me through most crises. I thought that I would share with you a couple of quick fix tricks that just might come in handy for you, and the cost of all of my supplies is under $5. This does not replace a permanent fix, but it will get you through the show until it can be repaired properly.
Please add your comments and questions to the YouTube comments section below the video. I enjoy hearing from you, and I do check in to answer those comments a couple of times a week.
Click on the image above to view this video. I have more videos currently in production. If there are topics that you would like help with, please send me some suggestions. If you are on Facebook, you can post your comments at:
Michelle Recommends - Thread Seal Tape
Thread seal tape, or plumber's tape, is handy to have anytime you have a broken or loose cork. I use it for emergency repairs, like in the video above. I also use it if I am testing mouthpieces, and for whatever reason they are a bit loose in my barrel. If you test a mouthpiece with a loose connection, there will be a subtle air leakage, and you will not have a fair test of the mouthpiece. If you love one that is a bit loose, it is easy to test it with this tape creating an airtight seal, and then have a thicker cork added to it once you buy it. It is very easy to put on and take off because there is no adhesive, it just clings to itself.
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 hundreds 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):
If you are curious about this, you can also try the first lesson with a 100% Money-Back Guarantee. If it is not the right style for you, you get your tuition refunded, no problem.
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.
Michelle Anderson, Clarinet
Thanks for reading this biweekly newsletter.
Helping you to find success on your instrument with sound teaching techniques, and useful learning systems.


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