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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000187.txt from 2001/05

From: "Doug Benoit" <>
Subj: [kl] Revelli Lives
Date: Sun, 6 May 2001 18:32:49 -0400

I've got one!

I was playing in the National Honors Band, in Knoxville, TN,
in the 1980-81 school year, while in High School. We played
the Nabucco Overture transcribed/arranged for Band. In one
of the rehearsals, rather early in the three or four day
duration of "positve torture," Dr Revelli victimized a
trumpeter (poor soul). He made the trumpeter stand up, turn
his music around, then proceeded to yell at him while he was
playing. The trumpeter, out of respect, stopped playing to
listen to the thundering voice. Dr. Revelli then began
screaming at him for stopping. So, the trumpeter was told
by the Doc to start over. The trumpeter cracked a note, and
the Doc went off on him, yelling and screaming, and told him
to start over. The trumpeter played it without a flaw.
Revelli smiled, and asked him if he thought he did well.
The trumpeter replied - without missing a beat: "Nope."

The Doc then asked him why he said no. The trumpeter said:
"Because I know that's what you were going to say."

Dr. Revelli, then returned with: "Okay smart guy, play it 20
consecutive times flawlessly!"

The trumpeter then began his journey - trumpet in hand -
which lasted for 45 minutes. Throughout this - seemingly
endless - cycle of reaching about 15 times or more, and
having to start over, the trumpeter finished his 20
consecutive times with a big grin on his face.

The band cheered relentlessly and wouldn't stop. Revelli
then said: "Play it one more time." The trumpeter began,
and after a few notes, the Doc deliberately walked up to a
music stand in the flute section, and kicked it over onto
the floor, making a very loud crash. The trumpeter stopped
playing the solo, which he'd suffered through learning for
nearly an hour prior to this moment, because he was startled
from the noise. Revelli began the screaming again. His
lessons that he taught that trumpeter, I'm sure, were
remembered by all of us. Concentration, confidence built by
"perfect practice" - as opposed to...practice.

The Doc then turned to me, for my alto saxophone solo, after
his psychological demoralization of character on behalf of
the trumpeter. The hair on my back began to stand on end,
and the rest of the afternoon followed the trump card, laid
down by the trumpeter. After an hour, I was very proud of
my solo, and sang it like Luciano. I didn't let him
demoralize my character, however. I smiled, and remained
serious, making no remarks whatsoever...not a peep. I
followed his every nuance of the baton, and I got the same
cheer. I did my 20 in under 20 minutes.

I was ready for that Nabucco nightmare. The Doc did it to
me years earlier, when he guest conducted my High School
Band, at a concert at the University of Massachusetts. I
was the principal victim alto player there, three years
prior to my National Honors Band experience. I was a

The world of Music Education is not the same anymore; it's
changed - some say for the better. I believe the musical
discipline is greatly diminished as a whole....and more
students are allowed to perform in lessons, etc, with less
than their absolute best. Revelli extracted the best
musicianship out of many players who never thought they
could do it.

I adopted the same concepts to my clarinet playing, and as a
private teacher, however, I do so without the yelling and
belittling. I take Revelli's screaming, and convert it in
my heart to positive energy when I teach now. My students
think I am a SPAZ, but all of them love me, and look forward
to their lessons.

Thank you Dr. Revelli, for teaching me what to do, and what
not to do....

Doug Benoit

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Hausmann []
Subject: Re: [kl] Revelli (Last One)

At 11:34 AM 5/4/2001 -0400, JMarioneau wrote:
>When Revelli was directin the Texas All-State Band in 1976,
he was mad
>because a chime player was not playing the chimes at the
right time. Revelli
>worked with the player and told him to set the mallet on
the chime, then
>don't look at the chime when he stikes it, look at the
conductor. The
>student would set the mallet on the chime, then just as
Revelli cued him, he
>would glance at the chime before pulling the mallet off the
chime to strike
>it. Of course that was not what Revelli wanted, so he
worked over and over
>with the student until he finally did it. He said "mallet
on," the student
>would put the mallet on then Revelli cued silently and the
student played.
>He did this over and over then he said "You can even do it
with your eyes
>closed, try it. Mallet on," then he conducted in the same
rhythm he had been
>doin and the student played exactly on cue. Then Revelli
said with a smile
>on his face "If you had your eyes closed, how did you know
I cued you?"
>Brought down the house.

Thanks for sharing a relatively NICE Revelli story. I was
sure he couldn't
have been mean ALL the time!

Bill Hausmann
451 Old Orchard Drive
Essexville, MI 48732 ICQ UIN

If you have to mic a saxophone, the rest of the band is TOO

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