Topic: Yamaha bassoons

I am more than likely going to be purchasing a Yamaha bassoon in the near future.  I plan to go on in performance after my bachelor's degree, and though I know that the Yamaha is a good horn, I do not want the brand of my bassoon to influence a professor's opinion of me before I audition.  Should I be concerned about this?  Thanks for the help!

PH

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Re: Yamaha bassoons

I would have a couple of questions about your choice of instrument.  First, what is it that has given you the impression that some teachers might question your qualifications if you choose the Yamaha instrument.  And second, what is the process by which you have selected a particular brand of bassoon in advance of being able to play on the one you will buy?

This is not intended to denigrate the Yamaha brand.  Many fine bassoonists use them, particulary the top-line models, and are happy with the results.  I have played on examples of Yamaha bassoons, as well as all other brands exhibited at the IRDS conferences, for the past 15 years or so.  I also played on the Yamaha prototypes many years ago - serial numbers 1 and 2!  I always liked the sound and response of the Yamaha bassoons, but in the early days, their keywork didn't feel very comfortable under my hands.  In my opinion, that has been improved immensely in recent years.

I think that what I am trying to do is to urge you to be cautious about making an arbitrary decision about what brand of instrument you will purchase.  If you have some idea about where you might be going to college, it would be a great idea to get some input from the professor of bassoon at that school, particularly in view of your concern about how the brand name of your bassoon might influence people's opinion of you or your choice.

Ed Lacy
University of Evansville

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Re: Yamaha bassoons

Hi Patrick:
How long is it that you have until you start your school auditions?  If it is not too long, and as long as you have a bassoon you can use to do a good audition, I would wait until you get to school to have your professor help you with your selection.  When you audition, you should tell the professor of your plan to buy an instrument and this would demonstrate your commitment.  If it is going to be a while, do you have someone you are studying with now who can help you pick a fine instrument?

It is not possible to speak for other teachers, but I don't think most would think more or less of you because of your choice of instrument.  It is how you play that instrument that matters.  Good luck, Kent

Dr. Kent Moore
Principal Lecturer In Bassoon and Theory
Northern Arizona University

Re: Yamaha bassoons

Hi Patrick,

I'm a Yamaha Artist and really like my Yamaha, but Kent is right.   The Bassoon teacher you audition for should be interested in your talent, work ethic, whether your personalities click, etc...  not the horn you play.  That can change and I feel as long as the bassoon is in good working order and you can make it play, who cares what brand it is!

Mark Ortwein
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra

Mark Ortwein
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
OrtweinWoodwinds.com

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Re: Yamaha bassoons

As I recently purchased a Fox Model II, a significant investment, I will go through the stages for you quickly that a number of the many experts at this latest and other IDRS conventions have told me and recommended.
1. Many professors have good contacts as to who is selling good bassoons.  That is how I sold my old one, a professor found it for a student that was looking for that or a similar design.
2. Play absolutely as many bassoons head to head with the yamaha or any other bassoon you are interested in buying do intensive research on that model and similar models in that category
3.  Ask questions on the forum, contact various re-sellers, like Charles Double Reed or American Bassoon Co to name a few and see what's on their table, and what's moving
4.  Call the factory or the rep, ask if there are any issues with that model line.
5.  When I went to the IDRS, I thought that I was going to get a 201 or a 601, but from going to the Fox Factory and playing what seemed like a million bassoons at the IDRS I ended up with the Model II that I think is fantastic and everyone who has heard it thinks it sounds like a million.
6.  Do not prejudice yourself.  Like the Realtor says, Location, Location, Location,  The Bassoonist Buyer needs to say  Play, Play Play, Ask Question, Ask Questions Ask Questions

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