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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000982.txt from 2000/07

From: "David B. Niethamer" <>
Subj: Re: [kl] Bonade book
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2000 23:16:11 -0400

on 7/27/00 1:45 PM, Lacy Schroeder wrote:

>I feel as though I'm a new initiate of an elitist club now that I have this
>book...Bonade Orchestral Excerpts!! Ahhh, I love it!! I've heard that there
>are some mistakes in it, though. I know about the one measure in the
>Firebird Variation (since I played it this past fall), but are there any
>others, and where? Plus, what are some other excerpt books that you all
>(whom I so admire and look up to) would recommend? I'm trying to build up my
>solo orchestral chops this year before I go to grad school. Any help would
>be totally appreciated!

Lacy - use Bonade to pick orchestral works you want to learn. Maybe a
teacher or friend can point you to the more important ones (Brahms 3 & 4,
Beethoven 4,6 & 8, for starters). Buy a part (Kalmus will often do
nicely), a score, and several good recordings (or borrow them from a

With all due respect to Daniel Bonade (who taught most of the next
generation of American orchestral players, and designed a killer
ligature), there's a lot of editing of the excerpts in his book, and not
all of it is in accord with current American orchestral practice. Or
practice anywhere in the world for that matter. If you want to become an
orchestral player, this may at the least cause you a lot of extra work
"unlearning" Bonade's editing. Bonade was French, and in his day there
were distinct national points of view about how to play certain
repertoire, often not having much to do with good performance practice.
And I'm not just bashing the French. I can't imagine a Berlin or Vienna
"La Mer" from that era!

That said, Drucker's excerpt books for International have lots of
repertoire that is rental material. When/if they come back into print,
they would be useful, but check the scores, and hear some recordings
there too.

What Tony Pay wrote about the Mozart Concerto is applicable here as well.
Context is everything. When you know and understand the context, the
required attention to detail in even the simplest orchestral passage
begins to make sense. It gives you a new perspective on playing.

Good luck!


David Niethamer
Principal Clarinet, Richmond Symphony

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