Questions about Practicing

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by BPinard, Jun 16, 2005.

  1. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    It seems that the warm up is whatever length one needs relative to the demands on one's job. If sound is the absolute most important part of your job or concept for playing, then, your standards for excellence may be different from another player.

    When I start to play in the morning I like a nice fat low C to start or a nice fat middle G because I want to fill the room with something that vibrates reflecting what's aready an expectation in my ear. It's not an analytical approach (how's it sound TODAY?). There's a recorded sound in my brain and I try to turn the horn into an aural mirror.

    I find that what really needs warming up are things like my fingers and articulation speed. In order for my fingers to play evenly and reliably, in order for my tongue to play evenly with a good sound I have to go steadily and gradually. So, that sounds more like a practice session, doesn't it?

    Therefore, I believe once you are at a place where your sound is clear in your head, you have regular, effective breathing habits, the warmup is less about the analogous athletic event regarding sound creation. Where the sports analogy may enter is in regard to motor function like use of the fingers at a high level and awakening the tongue to perform rapidly and consistently. I suppose one could add lip flexibilties to that, as well.

    As my Karate teacher used to say, "I stretch so that I can stretch".

    ML
     
  2. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    My first note is usually the fattest G in the staff I can play. I gradually work my range up chromatically too with the idea that I want the same sound as I ascend as I have on the G. Of course for me it doesn't always work out that way, but that is the goal.

    Mentally I find that I usually need to do a few things to synchronize my articulation with my fingers, so conceptually it would appear that I do some of the same things as Manny, but again, my warmups are usually only a few minutes, although most of the time I stretch my warm-up session out to 15 minutes or so, but I think that I do that as more of a mental thing, to check where I am playing and to determine a course of action for the upcoming practice session.
     
  3. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    In terms of actual time I guess I like a total of about an hour before I can say that I've covered everything I like to cover. That includes lots of little breaks between warmup pieces. Real playing time? Hmm... about half an hour or so? I feel like I'm at my best with a nice, well-thought out warm up and if I have a rehearsal and lessons to teach afterwards I feel as though I've practiced as well. There you go, I finally figured it out. A proper warmup for me easily substitutes for a practice session if need be.

    ML
     
  4. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    So it appears you adhere to the "rest as much as you play" philosophy in practice and during your warm-up. Do you find that while you are doing this that your mind starts to clear of random thoughts and you get very centered and focused mentally?
     
  5. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    It's for circulation and rest purposes, really. As you say, though, it gives me a chance to really commit to what I'm thinking about.

    ML
     
  6. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I think I understand what you are saying about circulation and rest purposes. When I first start playing, I don't just jump right into it. I ease into it and start working different aspects of my playing - sort of like a mechanic gathering up the tools he is going to need before starting on the repair work. :D Then, when I have the tools gathered, I can start working on what needs to be worked on.
     

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