In German we say „Sometimes there is something in the air“ or „The time is ripe for something“ when a new development happens in a similar way in different places. When I started to write my clarinet method „Claritop“ (www.hug-musikverlage.ch) I heard from a student that Reiner Wehle is writing a method as well. His three volumes of Clarinet Fundamentals (www.schott-musik.de ) appeared at the same time as mine. When I saw his method I realized that it is based on the same philosophy. Reiner Wehle visited my masterclass in Switzerland this week and comfirmed that he had the same impression. At ClarinetFest in Austin I met Larry Guy and he gave me his books „Intonation Training/Embouchure Building/Hand and Finger Development“: Incredible, he did in USA a similar thing that we did in Europe at the same time!
What is this similar idea about:
· Good exercises are the basis for the development of technique.
· Technique means not only fast fingers. Technique is breathing, posture, sound, intonation & articulation etc.
· We can give important explanations about clarinet technique and they can be very helpful.
· Basics are important. If they are not good, all the rest cannot work really good.
· Important is precision and thoroughness.
· They are based on the work of our excellent teachers: Daniel Bonade, Hans Rudolf Stalder and Hans Deinzer.
This is not new but it was hardly applied to the Clarinet in the 19th century. There was a certain activity in the 20th century but it was as a whole quite poor. Everything based on the 19th century. Bärmann, Kröppsch are not bad, but there are now better methods.
It is so important that we are always aware why we practise and what is our aim and the way to achieve it. We have to start with the easy things and go step by step to the more difficult ones. Never jump a step. If you play too difficult things you get cramped. Try always to feel free and relaxed. And don’t forget: Good practising is fun! The succes will make you happy.
If you have any questions don’t hesitate and contact me.
All the best