Versatility

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by camelbrass, Apr 18, 2005.

  1. camelbrass

    camelbrass Mezzo Forte User

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    Nov 5, 2003
    Dubai, UAE
    Manny,

    One of the things I've been noticing when reading input on these sites, particularly from aspiring orchestral players in the US and particularly from younger high school and college players, is the single-mindedness of their attitude towards types of sounds/styles appropriate for them as players to be exposed to. When I look at trumpet sections from other parts of the world (my experience is specifically in the UK and Australia) I find that although they are all skilled orchestral players generally there doesn't seem to be this same single-midedness about the ways and means of achieving this. This applies probably to both equipment and technique. 2 examples spring to mind Maurice Murphy and John Robertson (late of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra) although I'm sure there are many, many more. Both players were/are more than capable of taking a lead players chair in big bands (in fact I know that John Robertson used to do this on a regular basis) or play cornet in a brass band (MM). I know that Peter Bond at the NY Met came to orchestral playing via an unusual route (believe drum and bugle) and I'm sure there are others but they seem rare. I'm very aware that the concept of sound is different between the two styles, but for a professional the skills are not diametrically opposed

    In the US is the generation that you came through into orchestral playing as 'correct' as some of the younger players today appear to want to be or are we looking at a function of specialist schools and huge competition and a desire for those young players not wanting to dilute (corrupt) their skills?

    It's really an open question, based on an observation.

    Regards,

    Trevor
     
  2. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    Wow, Trevor...

    And I thought I was the only one who thought that.

    The major difference that I see now in this generation and mine, trumpet-wise, is how early the whole orchestral or jazz orientation seems to be pushed on today's players.

    It seemed to me that when I was a kid (by that I mean high school, not college) I barely knew what an orchestral excerpt was even though I did play three of them for my Juilliard exam. I had not a thought about owning a C trumpet. When I prepare my students for college exams I wonder: are they going to give this kid a hard time because he plays a Monette mouthpiece? Why do they they need so many major orchestral excerpts? Can't they just play one of the solos from the back of the Arban's to show musicality, versatility, and technique? Why are the Haydn and Hummel required at this level? Couldn't they require something else that doesn't start and stop so much, that is almost it's own accompaniment? Isn't the Hindemith a bit heavy for this age?

    In other words, we have a generation of kids that are learning to play the three H's: Haydn, Hummel, and Hindemith up to their expositions and not as complete solos for the sole purpose of winning auditions! It drives me nuts, I hate it. Versaltility is being ground out of them with this "single-minded" approach you referred to. I've only had one student since I've started to teach high schoolers again to play out of the Charlier. I really do consider it to be a college book. My kids study out of Arban, Clarke, Sachse, Arban's bass clef, Rochut and they have a Schlossberg book for when we need some work on warm-up and sound production. I feel it's all I need for a good, basic trumpeter and we play out of many different duet books to learn styles.

    The duet component is huge for me. One day it's Amsden, then Broiles, Rubank, Brisbois... whatever. It's s big musical world out there and the one lesson I learned from Mel Broiles is that you have to be as ready as you can for whatever style you are asked to play. I feel that high school is the time for the fun, flashy, musical cornet and trumpet solos and then in college you settle down to learning the important composers once you've had a chance to grow up a bit. In college you hear more artists of other instruments and it can really color how you interpret trumpet music.

    Fewer books, more styles.

    ML
     
  3. riffdawg2000

    riffdawg2000 Pianissimo User

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    Jan 9, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    IIIIIIIIIIII ... LIKE IT!

    <everything but the 'Bass Clef' Arbans! ;-) >
     
  4. camelbrass

    camelbrass Mezzo Forte User

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    Nov 5, 2003
    Dubai, UAE
    I also like the idea of the bass clef Arbans. That's evil :evil: I also love the Mel Broiles book, it has some absolutely lovely musical etudes in it and some really nice duets. Actually I play often with MM (music matters) out of both the Broiles and Vizutti books. It really focuses your attention on playing in tune and being sympathetic to 'the other' guy.

    I can't help but think that there is a whole generation that's going to be incredibly disappointed and not be diverse enough to really enjoy what they ultimately end up with, even if they make the grade. The classics are important and every professional should know the widely played ones but learning a book full of excerpts and the 'right' sound is not going to prepare you if the new season's repetoire includes John Williams or Malcolm Arnold. A great basic grounding and an ability to interperet styles that are not strictly 'classical' will help keep your chair though. I think your comment from Mel Broiles is right on the money.

    However, again, I'm just an amateur who deeply loves all styles of music and instruments but I really worry about what we're doing to the future.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Regards,

    Trevor
     
  5. Adrian_H

    Adrian_H Pianissimo User

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    Dec 4, 2004
    Manchester, UK
    I think teh trick is to remind your pupils and any young players that they should first and foremost be practicing to be Trumpeters, not orchestral musicians or jazz players, but trumpeters. A good grounding in all styles will help their playing which ever way they decide to go later on down the line.
     
  6. JackD

    JackD Mezzo Forte User

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    Nov 30, 2003
    Manchester / London
    I find this suprising - do none of the kids aiming for classical trumpet at US colleges play in big bands etc? A while back I was sitting in the London Schools Symphony Orchestra, and the trumpet section were talking about the various big bands we play with. I guess it's not like that over here.

    I don't see how it can dilute your technique - some of the lead players in big bands I've played in have been some of the best young players I've heard, classical, jazz or otherwise. Listen to Wayne Bergeron - that guy is a monster trumpet player with a gorgeous sound.

    Also, I agree about the triple - H thing. Thankfully my teachers have always got me doing various different pieces, and when I learnt the Haydn and Hindemith it was the whole piece, not just the first movement!
     
  7. Bear

    Bear Forte User

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    Apr 30, 2004
    USA
    to build on Adrian's post... Not even as specific as trumpeters in my opinion. We should focus on being musicians first.
     
  8. sinfoniantrumpeter

    sinfoniantrumpeter Pianissimo User

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    Apr 10, 2005
    Not trumpeters, not musicians, but ARTISTS!!!!

    Carl
     
  9. JackD

    JackD Mezzo Forte User

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    Nov 30, 2003
    Manchester / London
    Not trumpeters, or musicians, or artists, but PEOPLE!

    Wait... this is this a game right?
     
  10. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    Sep 29, 2004
    USA
    Not trumpeters or musicians or artists or people but KINDRED SPIRITS!

    next...

    ML
     

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