Hey everyone, here is the homework for this week!
- Pick up some 2 and 2 1/2 reeds at Long & McQuade this week. Try out both strengths back to back and assess what works best for you.
- Keep working on your tonguing exercise in all registers of the clarinet. Half notes, quarter notes, triplets, eighths, etc. Try it with one note first, then two, then three. Remember to really focus on the upper register of the clarinet, as this is where you have some issues.
- Continue working through your band pieces, and some Galper exercises. With the Toccata – try taking each section painstakingly slow. You may need to spend a week on each “section” for it to really start to sound good – this is okay. It’s better than running through the entire piece from start to finish. Also, think about working backwards through each piece like we talked about.
- Reeds – I want you to pick up some Vandoren reeds! I would suggest a 3 or 3 1/2 strength reed. If possible, try buying a few singles of both strengths (instead of full boxes) so we can figure out which works best. Bring these to our next lesson, and we can discuss them.
- Reminders: Sit up straight and support the air as much as possible! Especially in the upper register. Also – make sure your right pinky and left thumb are NEVER resting on the body of the clarinet. They should always be hovering over their respective keys.
- Keep working through your major scales – C, G, F, Bb, and D. Work on the arpeggios this week for Bb and D.
- Play through Days of W&R with the play along track – start thinking about dynamic highs and low in the piece and where you can add in crescendos, accents, etc. There is no right or wrong answer, just experiment with it!
- Keep working through Cry Me a River until the first double bar line (or up until the bridge).
- Now that we have the finger issue figured out (YAY) let’s try to rectify it! Make sure your ring fingers are not ever hitting the trill keys on either hand. Be aware of this.
- Keep focusing on your tonguing this week and embouchure/chin movement. Remember to keep your embouchure STILL and in place while tonguing. Avoid resetting it after every note, and try to use a lighter touch. Experiment with it as well.
- Keep working through your major scales, and make sure you are isolating the bits around the break. Work on the respective arpeggios for each scale as well.
- Continue on with Tarantella. Take it bar by bar, and focus on the larger leaps where you have to move two or more fingers at once. Make sure these transitions are as clean as possible!
- Keep working on your band music. For the swing piece: be sure you are sitting up straight and using as much air as possible to project on the higher notes. Work on getting the correct rhythms, and “feel”.
- Keep working through the chromatic scale, along with C and G major. Make sure she is playing the major scales the full range of the saxophone (eg. G major goes up to high D, down to low B and ends on G). The same goes for the arpeggios!
- Make sure she is really relaxing her jaw/chin enough for the low notes to come out fully.
- Mercy, Mercy, Mercy: timing is the main (and only) issue. When Camille takes a breath, make sure the breath isn’t too long and she stays in time with the piece.