Charles Lazurus Master Class Notes

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by PhatmonB6, Apr 5, 2006.

  1. PhatmonB6

    PhatmonB6 Mezzo Piano User

    Jan 16, 2005
    I did not attend....I got this off the oTHer site and thought it had some valuable info and thoughts.


    Don’t make playing complex – break it down to the simplest common denominators. Know exactly what you want to sound like. Listen as you play. Ask yourself, “How did it sound?†… not “How did it feel?†or “Was it technically correct?â€

    Technique is the ability to play one note and have it sound the way you want it to sound. What character/style am I trying to project?

    The trumpet is a megaphone for what you’re thinking!

    There are only 12 notes. There are only two rhythms (2 and 3). Everything is built on these basics.

    Breath: we take deep breaths to relax. The quality of our air determines the quality of our sound.

    Warm-up: start in the middle register. Many people start too low (second line G), which is really part of the lower register. He starts on third space C so that the first note of his day is in the middle register. When he’s not touring, he’ll push his total range … but work to the extremes in warm-up, do just go straight to your personal limits. Don’t play super-high/super-loud first thing! Maurice Andre advice: “Never force.â€

    Balanced practicing – “cover everything I have to doâ€
    Balance practice effort based on performance demands … don’t over-practice on days you’ll be performing!
    Daily, hit contrasts: connection of registers; scales vs. intervals; soft vs. loud; slurred vs. tongued; flexibilities

    For him, 2 hours/day is the “perfect amount†of practice. Keys to effective practice: focus; have a plan; have specific goals; do several sessions a day – 15 minutes is good for starters. Herseth said he never played for more than 30 minutes continuously.

    He “reinvents himself†every two years … revisit all fundamentals from the ground up.

    Mouthpiece buzzing – it’s a good exercise, but don’t do too much. Benefits: ear training (like singing), centering pitch, good to keep focus. He does maybe 1 minute/day. His experience is that too much mouthpiece buzzing makes him tight.

    To be able to do anything, you have to believe you can do it. To play well, you have to know exactly how you want to sound!

    “What do you do when you’re tired and you have to play anyway?†Focus on rhythm and stay in the framework of the music. Use lots of air, don’t slip in to shallow breathing (stress response).

    “Where do you tongue?†Fairly far forward, but the exact position really depends on the geometry of one’s mouth. Then again, one’s perception of where one tongues is not necessarily accurate. The most important factor: know what you want the articulation to sound like!

    Approach all styles by listening. Playing jazz keeps him loose, playing classical keeps him focused on the ensemble and on blend. The approaches feed each other.

    There are three threads that connect people to music: melody, rhythmic groove, and harmonic structure. Focus on these!

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