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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001325.txt from 1998/04

From: Roger Garrett <>
Subj: Re: auditions
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 1998 19:28:46 -0400

On Thu, 23 Apr 1998, Hat NYC 62 wrote:
> As to why schools are putting out clarinetists with performance degrees who
> have no understanding of these details. . .I can only guess that is is that
> peculiar American obsession with having an enormous symphonic band and needing
> warm bodies to fill the clarinet chairs. They are 'tuition fodder' in the
> worst and most exploitive sense of the word.

You have really pinpointed the problem. Band directors need
players....good ones.....and they often treat their performance faculty as
though they are working for the band director - as a recruiting tool - so
that the band director can take his group to CBDNA and impress everyone.

Ok - so that is a bit cynical.....but it happens in some places. In most
places, the band director is not that bad......but he still needs players.
The university will tell a student almost anything to get them to come to
their school......and if the player doesn't measure up, the band director
points the finger at the studio teacher.......very common!

At IWU, I simply do not admit anyone to clarinet performance unless they
qualify in the audition process. They have another shot when they enter
upper division study, but rarely do I encourage it. For those who do it
anyway, the study is tough......and if they don't practice in a way to
accomodate a career choice in performance and their lessons don't show a
steady progress toward the end goal, their grades reflect
it....which doesn't always make for the best student-teacher relationship.
Therefore, it is best to counsel them out unless they prove their interest
and motivation.

Roger Garrett

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