Topic: Starting Vibrato

I have just begun to start vibrato with my teacher and it seems like i just can't get the hand of it.  Any pointers for how to get started.  I don't really know what it even is, is it getting louder and softer or in and out of tune.

Jason Brackett
PYWE - Oboe
"Peace, Love, Oboe"

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Re: Starting Vibrato

Here's a great video with a tremendous amount of great info about vibrato:
http://www.idrs.org/multimedia/idrsmember/Conference05/Eberle-fast.html

David Crispin
Crispin's Creations and Accessories
freelance oboist. Mississippi Symphony Orchestra
www.CrispinsCreations.com

Re: Starting Vibrato

Would love to watch this video, but it comes up with "not found" on the video screen.  Any suggestions?

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Re: Starting Vibrato

I have had the hardest time getting my vibrato to work in learning oboe.  However, I made great strides with several strategies and techniques.  First, the reed cannot be hard to play where you need to control it to keep on pitch.  It needs to be stable and easy to play.  Second, you need to play at the tip of the reed and not in the middle of the reed or your vibrato techniques will not be successful even if they are correct.

The way I think of vibrato is like the vibrato of a singer. One needs to control the flow of air and one needs to be able to control the throat to be able to change the speed of the air.  Practice changing your wind speed.  You can start by almost blowing out a candle, bringing back the flame and then doing it again.  Also, practice singing and trial and error will help you find a vibrato that combines the aforementioned variables.  When you practice your singing, sing from g to a to b and back again with vibrato and then take the oboe to your mouth and try to replicate it.  This will take quite a bit of singing, which you can do outside your oboe practice in combination with your oboe practice.  Your throat will begin to make the changes that it needs to for your vibrato.  If you want to widen that change, go from g to a to g to f to g.  You will need to notice your throat at work.  Finally, an advanced technique to increase your vibrato potential, is to have your wind move to the top of your mouth where the roof of your mouth can also affect the vibrato.  Don't make it happen, let it happen.  If you do all of these things, the probablility of finding the beginnings (and hopefully more) of your vibrato will happen. Best of luck.  Kathy Sheinhouse, The Magic Reed.

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Re: Starting Vibrato

If you can sing with a vibrato (have a listener identify it for you), try to play an alto recorder with the same vibrato. Then try it on your instrument. Identify which notes allow you to do vibrato easiest - usually near the middle of the range not at the extremes. Gradually blend vibrato to notes you can't play it on. Vibrato is a "vocal" technique and is produced by the laryngeal muscles.

Christopher Weait,
Principal bassoon, Toronto Symphony (1968 - 1985)
IDRS Honorary Member; Emeritus professor Ohio State University
www.weaitmusic.com