Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by JLoyalist, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. JLoyalist

    JLoyalist New Friend

    Jan 30, 2011
    Hello everyone,

    This past year i went to a state solo & ensemble competition and i played Rustiques by Eugene Bozza(beautiful piece) and i played it rather well, getting the highest score. When i was done playing the piece for the judge the only real comment he had for me was regarding my embouchure movement. He told me that i sounded great but that the mistakes i made were because of a lot of movement in my facial muscles when i'm playing. He said that it wasn't so much when i was moving into the low and high registers but when i was playing notes within the same register. Afterwords i looked into the mirror when i was playing some Clarke exercises and i could definitely see what he was saying. Once i got to a certain speed in a moving line it became harder and harder to play; i felt like i was having to adjust my face to a lot of individual notes. I was just wondering what everyone here would recommend for limiting my movement when i'm playing and if anyone here had/has a similar problem.

    -Joseph :play:
  2. leftmid7

    leftmid7 Mezzo Piano User

    Sep 21, 2010
    Franklin, TN
    To a certain extent, just like embouchure position on the mpc, everyone's different. I'm having a hard time understanding how you got the highest score at a state contest yet made enough mistakes from mechanics to warrant the judge saying something, but that's another matter.

    If you are moving your facial muscles too much within the same note range and 'missing', you are relying on them over the airflow through your horn. I would do interval exercises where you are really concentrating on using your air column and focus to change notes and not just the muscles contorting. It will take slow and repetitive practice to get your body doing it consistently.

    ...insert some expert comments from Robin here...
  3. jiarby

    jiarby Fortissimo User

    May 7, 2011
    Irons exercises, like #7...

    READ the written intro, and practice them the way Earl intended (not how most people play them!) by adjusting the arch of the tongue and not my manipulating the lips.
  4. JLoyalist

    JLoyalist New Friend

    Jan 30, 2011
    It wasn't that i was making a lot of mistakes. The judge was sitting right in front of me and could see a lot of the changes going on in my embouchure he more or less said that it was making my job much harder than it needed to be.
  5. leftmid7

    leftmid7 Mezzo Piano User

    Sep 21, 2010
    Franklin, TN
    Ah, gotcha. Yeah, I'm always amazed when watching, say, Tine Thing, it doesn't even look like she is moving her mouth at all and ripping through these really technical passages like a hot knife through butter.
  6. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Ithaca NY
    I would say you got some good free counsel from that judge and ask your teacher about it. If that doesn't lead anywhere, perhaps you should contact Jeanne Pocius (below) for chops consult via skype. If anyone can give you guidance in this area it would be Jeanne.

    Jeanne Gabriel Pocius Dorismond
    (a non-profit 501(c)(3) approved non-profit charitable corporation)

    Please consider purchasing a copy of "SHAKEN, NOT STIRRED" available through amazon: Shaken, Not Stirred: A Survivor's Account of the January 12, 2010 Earthquake in Haiti (9781432758356): Jeanne G Pocius: Books

    US Cell:(001)978-317-4731
    Call me on SKYPE: (617) 326-7824
    SKYPE ID: jeanne.gabriel.pocius
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  7. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    Working the Schlossberg book has done wonders for me in this area.
  8. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    The obvious thing is something you've already touched on - practice with a mirror. The other exercises are also going to be good, but only if you watch what's happening so that you can start to feel what you see, and then you can work to systematically reduce or eliminate it.
  9. Satchmo Brecker

    Satchmo Brecker Piano User

    Jul 19, 2010
    Can someone settle this once and for all! Should lips move or not? Does it depend on where in the register? We have the phrase "lip slurs", which to me implies you move your lips. Should we rename lip slurs to "tongue slurs"? I read things here on TM praising this or that player whose embouchure barely moves. And we have the OP's judge saying too much lip/face movement. On the other hand I watched a video of Adam Rapa playing a Monet horn, working the entire range, and I swear if his embouchure moved any more his face would fall off. Thoroughly confused. And I realize there's gonna be variation by player, but what's the generally accepted best practice?
  10. leftmid7

    leftmid7 Mezzo Piano User

    Sep 21, 2010
    Franklin, TN
    Satch, I think the deal is if you are an accomplished player able to do the things you need to do and that movement is not a hindrance, do what you do.

    This kid evidently had a professional notice something wasn't happening as it should, so suggested a correction.

    I'd love to play like Tine or Adam and they're at opposite ends of the spectrum.

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