Topic: Source material...

Description of me.  I played in high school for 2 1/2 years and then took and 8 year break.  After that break I went back to school, bounced around on different majors and decided to pursue a music degree.  I know what your probably thinking, I myself have been saying "what have I gotten myself into?"  Needless to say, I picked up a bassoon, practiced til I went cross-eyed, and went to audition for entrance into the degree program.  I choose Galliard's 5th sonata as a performance piece (which I subsequently butchered, nerves kicked in) but was accepted into the program none the less (possibly as a mercy).

So for the summer I'm going through Weissenborn's beginner and advanced studies.  I'm WKU which has recently hired a new double reed professor however I have not had the chance to speak with her about what I should be working on.  I can say I produce a decent enough tone, however I need serious work on intonation and fingerings.  Are there any suggestions as to any other source material I should try to pick up?


Re: Source material...

Congrats on going back to school!

Here are a few quick suggestions (the laptop's battery is about to die):

Oubradous is another excellent book to use to help improve fingering.

Long tones are very helpful for intonation.

So is playing against a drone. For instance, you can play a scale slowly with the drone set to the tonic, or to the dominant. Make sure you can play each interval so that it sounds in tune with the drone.

Lots more -- I bet others will post as well. Best wishes!


Re: Source material...

Milde studies (both scales and are a good next step after you make your way (or get bored halfway through) the Weissenborn advanced studies.

I would stress a couple of basic things when it comes to raw technique studies:
1) Scales.  With a metronome.  Different rhythmic patterns (start on an off-beat, do it in triplets, it really does change how the scale "feels").  Also make sure you pay attention to the spots where you turn around and don't always do it the same way every day.  Go above tonic one day, only up to tonic the next, mess with the rhythm, etc.

2) Fingerings.  Make sure you are using correct accepted fingerings.  Full Eb in the staff (not just 1&3), Resonance key (low Eb) on G above the staff and on E above the staff and up, Front F# as often as possible on "middle" F#, correct use of the whisper key and half hole.  If you are not sure on those please ask.

Better to learn good habits now than have to break bad ones and re-learn later.

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