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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000306.txt from 2001/07

From: (Anne Lenoir)
Subj: [kl] Preparation of Material, up to tempo
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2001 09:56:07 -0400

This letter is not intended for "experts" in clarinet playing. It is
some thoughts that I have had recently after finally getting Rose # 26
up to 116 (sometimes) without having to take any extra breaths. I really
did not think that I could get it that fast. I started on June 22 at an
eighth note @-----.
For some misguided reason, I had seriously believed that I had to
start at the beginning of the etude and play it till the end with no
mistakes, before moving up the metronome. I went and had a short lesson
with Jon Manasse while he was here for the Colorado College annual music
festival, and he showed me some very logical ways to work on the etude,
other than playing it at "Grave" and taking forever to move up on the
metronome. We worked on the etude in very short, 2-bar sections, and
repeated them over and over, much faster than 50, maybe 76 or so. Then
we played these same sections with different rhythms than straight
16ths. My favorite was subdividing into an "eighth, tri-pa-let" (all the
way through a given section) then "tri-pa-let, eighth". Another was
double dotted eighths followed by a 32nd (sounds like dum de-dum
de-dum). Anyhow, I found that I needed to isolate every passage that
gave me "problems" and play it slowly, hundreds of times, and also play
it in the context of going from one section to the next. I have not been
able to play an etude from start to finish without breaking down, in
many years. Part of the reason why is because I was beating myself up by
requiring myself to play it perfectly from beginning to end at the
slowest immaginable tempo. It never occurred to me to work out each
problem and then play small sections, then larger sections, up to tempo.

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