Preparing For A Long Day Of Performing

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by xjb0906, Nov 10, 2013.

  1. xjb0906

    xjb0906 Piano User

    May 2, 2009
    Charlotte NC
    Every year I help the Shriners out by volunteering to play in their Big Band for a car show. It raises money for the Shriners. The job lasts for about 5 hours total. I messed up and agreed to play a church gig the same night as this obligation. I will be leaving the car show to drive straight to the next town for a rehearsal, dinner, and performance at the church. The church event is a paid gig. I get called several times a year by this choir director for performances at his church as well as other venues. I want to do the car show job and still have enough in the tank for the performance at the church. I know that endurance is built over time and there is no magic potion to build it in a short period of time. My individual and ensemble practice is pretty regular so I have a foundation to stand on. My question is how do some of you seasoned veterans prepare for a heavy day of performing? This day will mean at least 5-6 hours of face time. The gigs are in two weeks. I am thinking of putting in a lot of EXTRA time this week for practice and tapering off significantly in the week before the car show and church gig. I REALLY don't want to say no to either and sever connections that have been made. I also don't want to perform badly and not get called again.
  2. jiarby

    jiarby Fortissimo User

    May 7, 2011
    Play as little and as softly as you can on the car job. Get the mpc off the chops as mush as possible. Lay out when you can.
    ibuprofen. ice the chops with a popsicle in between shows.
  3. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    Tapering is a great idea, just not too soon, maybe starting three days before. To build endurance, spend a bunch of time on low-impact exercises, like Clarke studies in the lower octaves. The day before, just warm up and spend some time imagining yourself playing the pieces and having everything go great. Have fun!
  4. Dr.Mark

    Dr.Mark Mezzo Forte User

    Apr 5, 2011
    Hi xjb,
    You asked:
    "My question is how do some of you seasoned veterans prepare for a heavy day of performing"?
    After decades of long performances, I've learned to conserve. I'm a soloist and (of all hoildays) St. Patrick's is my longest. I'll start around 9 or 10 in the morning and not finish till late that night. I often have just enough time to wipe myself off with a towel and change shirts before I go on again.
    The secret?
    Stay hydrated (not with beer!!) and learn to play using the least amount necessary to get the job done. It's the way we're suppose to do it anyway and when you think about it, how much time is spent training the trumpet player to "back off" using too much air, pressure, tension, ect... than necessary. Following this simple method will allow a person to play all day long but it must be practiced.
  5. PiGuy_314

    PiGuy_314 Pianissimo User

    Oct 12, 2013
    Play with as little pressure as possible, and drink lots of water.
  6. musicalmason

    musicalmason Forte User

    Dec 14, 2003
    Any chance you can get a microphone for the big band gig? Be sure to save your chops for the paying work, even if it means laying out for a few with the big band....they'll understand. Amplification can really help save chops if that is potentially an option.
  7. xjb0906

    xjb0906 Piano User

    May 2, 2009
    Charlotte NC
    Thanks to everyone that spoke up with advice. I really didn't back down my practice time as much as my approach to playing and practice. More rest, less pressure, and lots of soft playing seemed to help. Things went well on both gigs. I had to turn down a third gig that day to play The National Anthem for an Eagle Scout ceremony due to time conflicts. I was able to refer a section mate from the community band for the The National Anthem. I only played lead when asked to on the big band gig and there was a one hour rest between the big band thing and the church rehearsal. The big band made lots of money for the kids helped by the Shriners Charity and it turned out that I was able to blend well with the rest of the church quartet while getting paid more than requested. I also made a couple of new connections that day. I call it a success.
  8. piccolomaster

    piccolomaster Pianissimo User

    Jan 23, 2008
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Very light warm up enough to do both jobs. Make sure you stay hydrated with water and make sure you eat your meals!!! Pace yourself and rest as much as possible. If possible flap your lips (like a tired horse). This helps get the blood flowing back to your lips. Advil or Ibuprofen works wonders to reduce swelling lips. I know exactly what you are going through. I had a very heavy Christmas Eve concerts. I had 3 church services on solo trumpet at 10:00am, 8:00pm and 11:00pm as well as a Brass Quartet concert from noon to 2pm and 4:00pm to 6:00pm. I was literally dying at the 8:00pm Church service but I survived. Whew!!! LOL.
  9. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

    Jan 30, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    I say it is great to see "A Plan Come Together".

    Success - No, it is exceptional planning and execution.
    Take a bow, and enjoy!

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