Recovering embouchure after braces?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by ABCgirl, Dec 28, 2006.

  1. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I got all of my students back into shape with long tones and slurs. Take a deep breath, without holding the air in or tonguing, exhale/play and hold a second line G as long as you can. Work your way down by half steps to low F# and then up as far as you can go without straining. After that comes slurs. I use the Irons book, but just about anything that you can comfortably play will work. Start for instance with: cececGcecececGcecGC (e=4th space, c=3rd space, G= second line, C below the staff). Then go through all of the valve combinations 2, 12, 23, 13, 123. It will be boring and take a week or two to reprogram your face, but it hasn't failed yet.
  2. ABCgirl

    ABCgirl Pianissimo User

    Nov 10, 2006
    Maryland, USA
    Wow! Great advice, y'all! I'll try the long tones--boring, definitely, but if it'll help, I'm willing to do it. Unfortunately, I only have little bit work on only that--rehearsals start again in a week!

    Thanks for all your help!
  3. Pedal C

    Pedal C Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 24, 2005
    I read your first post and it soulds like maybe you pushed yourself a little too quickly and now and really struggling and straining to play parts that you need more time to really be able to play. I might be wrong since I obviously haven't heard you play, but if that's the case, don't be afraid to take a few steps back and start slower and recover one step at a time. Bad habits come in when we try to do too much too fast. If you have to swap parts and play only third or four for a little while, do it, and remember that directors aren't always right when they say, "you don't need time, just do it!" Sometimes good advice, but not always. It's not really about playing the next concert, it's about your successful future as a trumpet players. Directors may need a little help to understand that...

    One of my teachers had a thing in his office that said "Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid of standing still." Sometimes trying to move TOO fast ends up making us stand still.
  4. stchasking

    stchasking Forte User

    Jun 11, 2006
    The book I would use is Earl Irons, "Lip Flexibilities." Start low and slow. Practice 15 to 20 minutes each session with three or more sessions a day.

    Make sure you are locking in your corners and contracting your lips toward the center. Keep at it. Keep a closed apperture, ie lips together with no gap.

    Practice double and triple tonguing. I found that long passages of multiple tonguing built up the corners and helped with overall endurance. Start low and work up to higher notes.

    As an aside: I really like the teflon tape idea. There is teflon tape for gas pipes that is extra thick. Some body out there with braces give us a report on thickness testing.
  5. masterfulmusic29

    masterfulmusic29 New Friend

    Dec 15, 2006
    Something that was told to me by a professional trumpet player was that the lower you can play, the higher you can play.
    Play a middle G on the 2nd line of the staff and work yourself down as far as you can go when you get their losen you lips even more and back of the mouthpiece a fraction until you make a farting sound. I know it sounds rediculous However I played principal in my high school band a college band until I got my braces off then these techniques got me my spot back in time to play the Summon the Heros Trumpet solo. You know the one that Tim Morrison played at the olympics recently. I had to play it on a Bb though. Lots of octave slurs and lots of sluring around between G on the staff and Top C. After the concert the conductor came up to me and the guy who took principal from me and had us switch spots.

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