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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000821.txt from 1997/12

From: "John Gates" <>
Subj: Re: $5,000 for double tongue teacher
Date: Wed, 17 Dec 1997 12:19:48 -0500

Thanks for your reply. Here's what happens with me. I can double tongue
just find as long as I
don't have the clarinet in my mouth. But when I begin to play my double
tongue, for the majority of time, seems to slow down to about the speed of
my single tongue, or maybe even slower. That's when I practice just double
tonguing (say on an open G). The good news is that if I actually work on a
piece (and about a year 1/2 ago I played the Bizet symphony and about a
month ago I played Prokofiev "Classical Symphony") I was able to get some
better results, however still not as consistent or as good as I would have
It seems that sometimes I have to "trick myself" by double tonguing without
the clarinet in my face and then put the instrument in sort of psyching my
throat and tongue muscles not to accept their usual position. Sometimes
that works, but not for long.
Another negative is that I'm probably a good deal older than you, 55, and
although not impossible it is a bit more difficult to change at my age.
I do have the money I am a professional clarinetist so it is very important
to me. It wasn't such an issue 30 years ago but I'll be damned if I am
going to embarrass the rest of the section with slow tonguing. At any rate
thank you for your thoughtful letter.
Oh, I didn't mention that I do have Robt. Spring's article. However I don't
double make the forward tongue stroke on the reed, it goes to the roof of
the mouth, similar to a recorder. When I try to go directly to the reed It
seems to slow down and become less even. Any comments on this?????

-----Original Message-----
From: Lou and Ruth Polcari <>
Date: Friday, December 12, 1997 12:13 PM
Subject: Re: $5,000 for double tongue teacher

>You should talk to my husband, Lou .... he is a profound teacher and
>excellent clarinetist. We live in Santa Maria, Ca. He is the principal
>clarinet with the Coastal Valley Symphony. As a flute player I have learned
>a great deal from him ....
>-----Original Message-----
>From: John Gates <>
>To: Klarinet <>
>Date: Friday, December 12, 1997 9:58 AM
>Subject: $5,000 for double tongue teacher
>>I've played clarinet for all my life and like to think that I do a good
>>of it well. My problem has always been tonguing quickly. Its been
>>constantly depressing and has, I believe that with age, getting even
>>I guess I'm just one of those that just doesn't have a quick single
>>So it seems that double tonguing is probably the answer.
>>Well, I messed around with double tonguing for about 4 years now and
>>sometimes it seems that I can get the tongue to go fast but not for long.
>>Usually the speed is about as fast as my single tongue however every now
>>then I can get it fast but only in short spurts. So here's the deal.
>>For any of you in cyberspace that think you can teach double tonguing I
>>give you $5,000 if you can teach me. I don't mean incredibly fast just
>>enough so I am not embarrassed by my other woodwind colleagues in the
>>orchestra. I want to be able to play the last movt. of Beethoven 4 at 144
>>to the quarter (forget the grace note) and the Mendelssohn Scherzo at 92
>>the dotted quarter. With 90% consistency.
>>There's no time constraints but I would like to aim for 6 months. Its an
>>all or nothing deal. If you live in the Southern California area all that
>>much better. If I have to fly I'll spend no more than an additional $500
>>plane fare, anything more than that will have to come off the top of the
>>please e mail me at cadenza@-----.

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