The Lesson

Today was my first clarinet lesson and it went absolutely great…..if great means that I had a desert dry mouth, fumble fingers and too many words with too little content!  It did feel a bit like a disaster; I was almost too nervous to get any sound out!  But she assumed I was coming back next week so at least she didn’t give up on me!

She checked out and played my horn which was much appreciated.  I’ve never been sure if the horn is sharp or if I’m so tense when I play that I create the sharpness in my horn.  But she seemed to feel my embouchure was fine.  That is a relief because at this point, it would be difficult to change that part of my playing.  Although I want to point out that I could change it; it would just be difficult!  She showed me an alternate fingering for F# which is pretty helpful in one passage that I play.  She gave me a few other tips as well to be sure the reed is ready (we did a seal test to be sure the reed seals properly to the mouthpiece) and that the reed is placed on the mouthpiece properly.  You would think after all these years I would know how to place a reed on the mouthpiece but it never occurred to me to make sure it was on the mouthpiece straight.  I am always particular about the tip of the reed but never considered that it would help if the bottom of the reed lined up properly.

Oh, I don’t need to get into everything she said; seems like that might be boring for those of you that are not as crazy about clarinet as I am!  What’s that you say?  No one is as crazy about clarinet as me?  You are probably right!  My kids think I’m obsessed; especially with the number of groups I perform with!  I’ll just end with the fact that I wish I had done better, I wish I wasn’t so self conscious about playing and I can’t wait for the next lesson……

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