Topic: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Hi I'm new to IDRS.  A friend convinced me to sign up and said the forums were great. 

I have been practicing the Hummel Concerto for a while now and I was wondering if anyone could offer any suggestions on the passage with the octave slurs towards the end of the first movement.  Ive tried playing it in groups, playing the bottom notes only, and I have also alternated between playing the notes short-long, short long, short long, and vice versa.  Any suggestions would be great! Thank you.

Rudy Munoz
University of Texas at El Paso, student

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Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Try using three 32th note triplets and one eighth note in a pattern and then reversing this pattern, both articulated and slurred. Do it slowly, and then let it "cook" and then return to the regular patterns you have been using. This  should help. Let me know how it goes.

Last edited by Vincent Ellin (2007-08-20 10:24:08)

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Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Are you using trick fingerings?  Most bassoonists I know use false fingerings for the upper octaves for most of that passage.

M.M.A., D.M.A. University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign: B.Mus. Lawrence University
Bassoon professor at University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire
Maker of the Little-Jake electric bassoon pickup and Weasel bassoon reeds

Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Trent wrote:

Are you using trick fingerings?  Most bassoonists I know use false fingerings for the upper octaves for most of that passage.

Excuse my o.c.d, but these two phrases have bugged me for years.  Who or what are you trying to "trick" with a fingering?  The audience?  The bassoon?  The reed?   Same goes for "false" fingerings.  If it's a "false" fingering, then wouldn't it give you a wrong note?  I would think a DMA candidate would know these things....Now if you want to talk about alternate fingerings, that would be another matter.  Cooper/Toplansky have rarely failed me with alternate fingerings.

By the way, my son the bassoon major, said that he was taught this passage at Keith Sweger's excellent Bassoon Camp at Ball State University several years ago with "traditional" fingerings.

Bryan Cavitt
Bassoonist, Elkhart (IN) Municipal Band; Bassoon Dad

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Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Oh come on, you're just being semantic.  You (and everyone else reading this) clearly knew what I meant.  for crying out loud...

I wasn't suggesting either that it wasn't possible and maybe even preferable to play the mentioned passage with "normal" fingerings (or whatever you want to call them), I was just stating my experience has been that many good players do not.

M.M.A., D.M.A. University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign: B.Mus. Lawrence University
Bassoon professor at University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire
Maker of the Little-Jake electric bassoon pickup and Weasel bassoon reeds

Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

I'm thinking of using an alternate high "d" for that passage rather than flicking up although I can do that as well. Maybe I'm a freak but I have always played it with the "full" fingerings.

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Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Thank you all for your suggestions and I will be practicing more. 
I will also keep you informed of my progress, if any. 

Vincent, I think your suggestion has been the most helpful.

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Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

I use the 2nd, 3rd, and pinky (on the F Key) of the right hand for the upper C# and D. 
Other than that, full fingerings with venting or flicking of the upper notes.

Mark Ortwein
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra

Mark Ortwein
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
OrtweinWoodwinds.com

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Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

Just saw this. I worked on this years ago and just locked the whisper key and flicked the high D key for ALL the 8ves except the C#. I used the long fingering for that. Worked great for me.

Jim Kirker

www.kirkerbassoonrepair.com

Re: Hummel Bassoon Concerto

To follow up on my previous comments here as since this post I've worked this piece up and will be performing it on a recital myself the end of this month.  For the passage in question I'm not doing anything with the whisper key or lock, not flicking and just using brute force embouchure contortions to pull off the different octaves, sometimes using half hole as an aid for things like the G and A.  Normal fingering for the upper E.

I'm tonguing it all, so that helps and eliminates the need for flicking and whatever else to get the upper octave out.  The lower octave is too strong for the upper octave compared to my ideal performance of the piece, but the notes are there and in tempo.

M.M.A., D.M.A. University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign: B.Mus. Lawrence University
Bassoon professor at University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire
Maker of the Little-Jake electric bassoon pickup and Weasel bassoon reeds