What are the duties of the Principal Trumpet Chair?

Discussion in 'Orchestra / Solo / Chamber Music' started by wiseone2, Jan 13, 2005.

  1. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    3,418
    375
    Nov 19, 2003
    Brooklyn,NY
    Manny,
    Over at TH they are clueless.
    Please clarify what happens in a major professional orchestra.

    Wilmer
     
  2. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

    5,917
    24
    Sep 29, 2004
    USA
    Senor Wilmer,

    I gotta get on stage but be assured, I'll address it en toto when I'm on break.

    Freakin' cold out here in the frozen north, bro.

    ML
     
  3. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

    5,917
    24
    Sep 29, 2004
    USA
    Okay, back...

    My career has been an interesting study in exactly that, Wilmer: What do I do now?!

    The principal trumpet job is a shape shifter that depends somewhat on the level of orchestra you play in but ultimately you have to bea leader with a clear idea.

    You have to be authoritative enough to compel people to follow you by example but giving enough to know when you have to bend to the will of another.

    You have to have brains enough to know when to use to your heart. Or, you have to be tough enough to know when you should be sensitive.

    The more you know about the repertoire you're playing, the better leader you'll be. If you micro-manage and forget the big picture you're screwed. You have to be able to fix intonation problems within the section and you have to know what your intonation problems are within your own playing.

    If you think that playing Bruckner, Mahler, and Richard Strauss are basically the same kind of playing move over to another chair and let someone else play first.

    If a conductor asks you for a different color for a passage and you're thinking of the old joke "Maestro, do you want it softer or louder?" move over and let someone else play first.

    Leading comes with the responsibility of listening to what's around you. Leading comes with the responsibilty of practicing not only for maintenance but for constant mprovement.

    Don't be a jerk. Be nice to people when they ask an innocent question. Check your ego at the door, you have a job to do and it's not always about you, it's about the music. If someone says "Your momma!"in the rehearsal, take him outside and kick his butt. Otherwise, be civil and do your job.

    Get to work early when there's new music and have your act together so you can lead. Make people glad you're there to with. You are the simutaneous translator for the conductor and your section.

    Well, folks... that's not all of it but it's a start.


    ML
     
  4. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    3,418
    375
    Nov 19, 2003
    Brooklyn,NY
    Thanks, Manny.
    There are books about every aspect of trumpet playing except for my question to you. You provided a look into the real world of playing Principal Trumpet in the Big Leagues.
    Wilmer
     

Share This Page