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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by groy, Feb 18, 2014.
Thank you, Juarez. It was probably a little late for me to be posting! I fixed it.
Trumpet players, from what I have seen, make a huge deal out of warm ups, as they do in evething. For me its very simple. A few big breaths from the bottom, some long tones on the mouthpiece, some long tones on the trumpet from G to low in the staff to G below the staff, then I go from C below the staff to C in the staff chromatically, after that I do some articulation, I drink 0,1 lt of water in room temperature with 2 drops of lemon juice, stretch my arms and legs, count to 101, press Ctrl + Alt + F1 no my computer while standing on one leg and scream with a pillow covering my face thinking that I must be a pervert for choosing the trumpet as a hobbie...then I start practicing until my neighbor bangs the walls screaming into a pillow cursing the moment he rented an appartment next to trumpet players place
Thank you Juarez-MA, but I want to share credit for this idea. I had been doing this warm up now for over a decade and found it prepares me for almost anything the follow-up venue demands, and yes flexibility in my ability to use lip muscle is very "warm" to respond after this. But that shared credit goes also to Alan Vizzutti. I attended a Master Class he conducted two years ago, and he amazingly spoke out against playing pure long tones. He said (and it is my experience as well) that holding a note out singularly for a period of time actually fatigues muscle. He rather uses long tones in series, through slurring, to keep some component of fine supple adjustment to the lips. I find this slurring of long tones is a valuable tool to use as well. I then increase and focus the second (and last phase) of my warm-up with the rapid slur exercise I described above as it really gets the blood flow to the muscle fiber and sets them in the ready position for what ever demanding chart follows.
If you used 3 drops of lemon juice you could play DHC standing on your head and 32nd note staccato runs would be a piece of cake. But it's up to you.
On what mucosal surface are you dropping that lemon juice? ...and careful with your answer Tobylou, this IS a public forum.
Just to loosen the lips a bit, I play a few long tones, a scale or two, a few pedals, and then wait quietly for rehearsal to begin. If I'm at home, I go right into whatever I'm working on at the time. To me, long warmups don't do anything but detract from my practice time (at home), or make unnecessary racket (at a rehearsal or before a gig).
Pet peeve: Excessive warm up on stage immediately before an ensemble performance. Even worse is practicing some part of a piece on stage right before it's to be performed. This type of behavior looks very unprofessional. I find a backstage dressing room or corridor to do my limited "warmup" and then go and sit on stage.
For clarification, are we discussing a warm-up prior to performance, or daily routine? I've seen answers that seem to indicate both.
I have found in recent weeks that I have grossly neglected slurring as part of my daily routine, and it's made a difference to get back in that habit.
This morning I had the best trumpet practice possible. I woke up at 6:45 to have time to practice before work, which is what I normally do. As I started to get dressed, I realized that I hadn't had enough sleep the night before (following a long trumpet practice yesterday morning and a pretty hard workout yesterday evening), my head felt woozy, my face felt cross-eyed, and that the most important thing I could do to prepare my embouchure and my mind for trumpet playing was to go back to sleep.
It deeply pained my soul to skip a practice, but if I'd forced my way through a practice routine in my sleep-deprived condition, it would have been frustrating and unproductive, and I would have arrived at work in a very poor state of mind. I'll squeeze in at least a 30-45 minute practice at some point today, and attack it with renewed energy tomorrow. I'm glad I didn't try to force it this morning.
It's a secret. Shhhhhh!
Many "warmups" are really daily routines. A good routine will work all kinds of muscles in a musical way, but it easy to get stuck on a routine. Doing the same thing over and over is good, but we also need to stretch our limits.
As for a warmup....
I like the Heimat tone concept of Gerald Webster.
Gerald Webster discovered that when we play a medium high, medium low, medium loud tone on our mouthpiece first thing in the day, the same pitch will come out, our personal "home" tone, or Heimat tone (he discovered this while touring with Edward Tarr in Germany, thus the name). "Personal" means just that, each person has his/her own Heimat tone -- there is no "good," "bad" or "ideal." Just play your first tone of the day on your mouthpiece for a few days, check your pitch with a piano or your trumpet, and you've got your own personal Heimat tone.
Some players start their warm-ups on c below the staff, then work their way upwards, but that makes any thing above c below the staff a more or less a high note. Rather than starting in the lower register, consider starting at your personal Heimat tone and expanding from there. That gives us the feeling of having more low tones to play, and fewer high ones to struggle for. After a couple minutes of expanding from the Heimat tone, you should be in pretty good shape to play.
The first note I usually blow is a 2nd line G. That must be my Heimat tone. Maybe I should bump it up to a concert Bb as a better center to the normal playing range...