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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000133.txt from 1996/04

From: "Lorne G. Buick" <mcheramy@-----.CA>
Subj: Re: Buffet plastic clarinet
Date: Fri, 5 Apr 1996 20:21:11 -0500

>A few years ago when I was at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, I had
>a friend who played on a plastic clarinet made by Buffet. I never got the
>serial number or anything, but I had never seen such a thing. He is, of course,
>at a tremendous advantage to the rest of us, because the action on most makes
>of plastic clarinets is radically different from Buffets. Therefore, when he
>goes out to buy a wood clarinet, he will already be fully accustomed to the

Tremendous advantage? Radically different? This seems like a bit of an
exaggeration - maybe I'm biased because I play basset horn, bass, E flat,
and Rossi clarinets (with non-matching A and B flat because I bought them
years apart with a major redesign of the mechanism in between), but
personally I would call this a trivial difference and not necessarily any
advantage at all. Of course it depends on the situation - the clarinet prof
here (at Memorial University) had a problem getting his clarinets back
after sending them to France for a factory overhaul, and had to practise
Bartok's _Contrasts_ on a Yamaha plastic B flat for six weeks, and got his
own horns back three days before the performance. He did fine, but that was
definitely stressful.

What takes a lot more getting used to is the peculiarities of intonation
when switching clarinets, and I don't think Buffet student clarinets are
close enough to the R-13's in this regard for it to be any advantage.
>Therefore, my question is this: How rare are these Buffet plastic clarinets?
>Also, who carries them? The plastic clarinet I have now is a Conn, which is a
>fine instrument, but the action on it is too different from my Buffets. Anyone
>have any input? It would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
>Greg Baker

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