Lets get personal!

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by RobertSlotte, Sep 5, 2008.

  1. RobertSlotte

    RobertSlotte Pianissimo User

    Jul 7, 2008
    hey...It was just a simple question, Knew it could be kind of sensitive to some thoug :)

    S.Morris, I went throu the exakt same thing as you did...infact my teachers did hurt me much couse the did not know about upstream and downstream...thats why it might be important to know; ifor example teaching.
  2. screamingmorris

    screamingmorris Mezzo Forte User

    Apr 4, 2007
    You can claim that after what I said happened to me back in school when I was unknowingly trying to play with an embouchure type that I was not born with?

    Then everyone should wear the same eyeglasses, because "labels" such as near-sighted and far-sighted don't help anyone.

    Sounds like the overly-simplistic 5-second instruction given to me by the 5th grade band instructor.
    Which led to my having a screwed-up embouchure for the next 6 years.

    Anyway, I don't plan on posting about the matter anymore in this thread.

    - Morris
  3. RobertSlotte

    RobertSlotte Pianissimo User

    Jul 7, 2008
    Here is an Inrview with Andrea Tofanelli litle touching this subject.

    Maby someona are interested and thoes of you that dont care...just do not read it ok? :)

    >>> Have you ever had problems with embouchure and -
    - how did you resolve them? [ hehehe gotcha !! ]

    Well, here is a "scabrous" theme...i only wanted to do an example for
    other questions you could put in the schedule, but in effect in a period
    of my life i had some problems with embouchure, and i have studied a lot
    on this subject (you can not imagine how much...)

    When i began to study at the Conservatory (i repeat that here in Italy
    is different from US, where the Conservatory is considered like an
    University), as i narrate you before, i was already working in the
    Tuscany area with bands, dance music bands, big bands and also something
    with classical music.

    My embouchure was strong, i played with 1/4 higher lip and 3/4 lower
    lip, with my trumpet inclined up (like now) and the lower lip open on
    the red part.

    You know that embouchures are different from trumpeter to trumpeter.

    There is not only one right embouchure for everyone, because everyone has
    his own face, jaw and teeth formation, so i think your embouchure should

    be the most natural possible.

    But my teacher got the terrible idea to change my embouchure, telling me
    to play in the most known classical embouchure, that is 3/4 higher lip
    and 1/4 lower lip, inclining my trumpet down ...what a disaster!

    I can not play like anything more, and after two lines of an excercise my lips
    were... cooked. I did 3 years like this, and my teacher did not know
    what to do.

    I keep on working in the Tuscany area as before but playing 3rd or 4th trumpet in the sections. I really was down, and very sad. One day i decided to talk with my teacher, with the suppot of my parents, and told him that i wanted to come back to my natural embouchure. It was the only thing to do, because also other experiments we tried were been a failure.

    He agreed, and i started again to study my embouchure.

    In less than 4 months i was ok, but not completely. In fact, i was not able
    to find again the exact embouchure i had before entering at the
    Conservatory. So, i was able to play and do again lead trumpet and take
    successfully my intermediate examinations at school, but there was
    something different, and i was not completely satisfied.

    Two months before my final examination for the diploma i read about

    Mr Armando Ghitalla's seminary in Italy and i went there immediately.

    He told me to put my lips into the mouthpiece, but without changing my high
    inclination of the horn, and try to play very closed, building a wall
    with my lips...it's hard to explain with words, but when my alumns see
    it, they immediately understand.

    Anyway, mr Ghitalla did the miracle...i changed again my embouchure, as mr Ghitalla told me, and i followed and practiced all the things he explained during the seminary. After a month i was a new trumpeter, a new life was started and i did my final
    examination at the Conservatory successfully, with highest full marks (10 and praise, the only one in trumpet in all the story of the Conservatory of Lucca).

    You know the rest...

    Take care and keep in touch Roddy.
    Andrea Tofanelli
  4. screamingmorris

    screamingmorris Mezzo Forte User

    Apr 4, 2007
    That is quite typical, because more brass players (and brass teachers) are born with a downstream embouchure than with an upstream embouchure.
    So, being ignorant of what various embouchures types exist, many brass teachers try to get all players to conform to one embouchure type, the downstream type that the teachers themselves usually use.
    Which is great for the majority of players which is born with a downstream type,
    but is pure hades for the minority which is born with an upstream type.

    - Morris
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2008
  5. RobertSlotte

    RobertSlotte Pianissimo User

    Jul 7, 2008
    Im with Morris on this subject becouse I have done my share of struggling. BELIVE me...in fact I had to find the right way all by my self even thou my teachers where proffesional teachers and virtuoso players.

    After MORE then 10 years of searching I am FINALY happy with how I play. Range is up 2 octaves more then when I hadd "professional lessons" (tripple C,s no problem any more) and my enduranse is very much stronger.

    Thats why I dont like downstream players to tell me that I should point my bell a "little mor down" or anything other BS.

    There is clearly something missing in the education of brass teachers.

    So pls with al respect do not come saying things like: upstream or downstream is not important!

    Robert Slotte
  6. RobertSlotte

    RobertSlotte Pianissimo User

    Jul 7, 2008
    By more then 10 years of searching I meen that It was then I started to look for answers by finding other trumpetplayers then my techers and finding things out for my self. I´we been playing since I was 5 years old.
  7. trumpetnick

    trumpetnick Fortissimo User

    Nov 16, 2005
    Vidin, Bulgaria
    I think that you completely misunderstood my post. And no, I am not a overly-simplistic instructor. But I don't like complicating things around teaching unless is absolutely necessary and that's why I firmly stand for what Rowul wrote in another thread:
    Though Morris' case may have been different, most trumpeters don't need to know all the embouchure types in order to do what is appropriate for them.

    I kind of like BigTiny's attitude about it:
  8. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I am an upbeat kind of guy that puts a lot of emphasis on the downbeat. Kind of reminds me of the deadbeats that try and change embouchures without knowing what they are doing.

    The basic problem is not up or downstream (unless you fish for a living), it is where your bell is pointed. In a symphonic situation, band or orchestra, bells pointed above the stand stick out. When I conduct, I have to ask one of my upstream students to point the bell towards the stand - even although he has to look down a bit to do so. It is just a symphonic cross to bear when you are in the minority. In an amplified jazz setting, the bell direction is insignificant.

    I am very happy for Morris and you, Robert for getting lucky before quitting altogether. Like brand blindness in instruments, uniformity over geometry and anatomy is a sickness shared by the closed mind.
  9. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    Oh. Does that mean I have to work on my geometry and anatomy now too? I have a hard enough time expressing music with a good sound in tune! :cool:
  10. RobertSlotte

    RobertSlotte Pianissimo User

    Jul 7, 2008
    Thanks Rowuk for beeing happy for us :)

    You know it is really not har to understand why it got so wrong in the first place.
    If you are a young kind burning with desire to be good and you get your place in the education system, get your virtuoso techer that you edmire and would do almost anything to be like....will youl listen to what he says?? OF COURE YOU WILL :)
    Becouse he is a viruoso and I was just a kid tryning to learn.

    Just my story...didnt really expect it to get this controversial but maby just maby some kid reading this gets an "aha" experiense. That would be great :)

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