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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000036.txt from 1997/09

From: Bill Hausmann <>
Subj: Re: A student's multiple questions
Date: Mon, 1 Sep 1997 19:11:06 -0400

At 01:17 PM 9/1/97 -0500, you wrote:
>You'll hear differing statements on this. Most band directors like the
>Vandoren 5RV Lyre (you'll see it abbreviated 5RVL a lot), because it's
>supposedly easy to control. I've never played on one, so I really
>couldn't tell you from experience. My teacher started me out on a
>professional mouthpiece, the Gigliotti P34, from the beginning (5th
>grade), and I still play on a Gigliotti P34 today. She never liked the
>5RVL very much.
>The 5RVL has a very closed facing (probably the most closed-faced
>mouthpiece on the market), and the Gigliotti is probably the most open (of
>the classical mouthpieces--the Vandoren 5JB Jazz mouthpiece is more open
>than the P34). So they're two completely opposite ends of the spectrum.
>I don't know a whole lot about the differences between closed and open
>mouthpieces, but I do know that the closed ones are supposed to be easier
>to control. I think the open ones are louder and have a brighter sound.
>(at least mine is louder and brighter) The B45 is an open mouthpiece
>(not quite as open as the P34, though)
>I would definitely invest in a good mouthpiece, though. When I bought my
>Gigliotti years ago it made a huge difference over the mouthpiece that
>came with my first clarinet (a Selmer HS*)....

The standard Vandoren 5RV is the most closed in their range (1.065 mm) but
the 5RVL is next (1.09 mm). The B45 at 1.195 is nearer the other end of
the scale, and has a very long facing besides. According to their own
literature, the long facing calls for a stiff reed, but the large opening
calls for a soft one, so it works out to middle of the road.

Closed mouthpieces like the 5RV and HS* are easier to control, making them
popular choices for band directors. (I've never heard of anyone around here
touting the 5RV, but the HS* (even more closed) is almost universal. Note:
I am a school services rep for a music store.) But more volume and
flexibility come with more open mouthpieces.

And by the way, according to the chart I have the P34 is actually MORE
closed that the 5RV! The difference must be in the chamber.

Bill Hausmann
451 Old Orchard Drive
Essexville, MI 48732

If you have to mic a saxophone, the rest of the band is too loud.

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