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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000637.txt from 2004/10

From: Adam Michlin <>
Subj: Re: [kl] RE: klarinet Digest 22 Oct 2004 08:14:59 -0000 Issue 5597
Date: Fri, 22 Oct 2004 13:52:25 -0400


It is my pleasure.

It is very difficult to explain these concepts in either text or through a
video. Why? Not necessarily just because of the media, but because of the
one way nature of the media.

If you and I are in the same physical room, working out a concept relating
to the clarinet, we can efficiently communicate (we may not agree, an
entirely different point). It is more difficult to do so through this list
because text is inherently inefficient in explaining certain things
(especially sound) which are easily demonstrated in person. In either case,
we tend to be more successful because of the two way nature of our

A video or recording can be very useful. A book can be very useful. But we
can learn the most through interactive discussion. I should add that the
more informed the participants are (through reading books, watching videos,
and listening to recordings) the more productive the discussion tends to
be. Socrates knew this.

The Socratic method can be emulated in text or video, but it requires the
author be extraordinarily well informed to begin with. Now add the
complexities of video production and distribution and it starts to become
clear that making such a video is a rather serious undertaking.

The cliche' regarding giving a man a fish is very true. The books and
videos (I will be the first to admit there are some major exceptions) I
have seen on the market tend to be the kind which give the student a fish.
But consider how difficult it would be to teach someone how to fish with
only a video or book. Probably not possible, but I do think it is possible
to write a book that explains how to make fishing easier. Such a book needs
to explain cause and effect in simple terms rather than enumerating the
opinions of famous fisherman. None of which, I might add, precludes us
from additionally learning about fishing from the opinions of famous fisherman.

Hm. Talk about stretching a metaphor, I just gave myself a headache. Sorry!


At 08:18 AM 10/22/2004 -0700, Warren Rosenberg wrote:
>Thanks for trying. I appreciate your efforts to make things simple to
>understand. It seems that words are inadequate to express just about
>everything including clarinet sound.
>I am very curious why someone with a need for money doesn't create a set of
>video training expressing their thoughts and demonstrations as what to do
>and what not to do, how are reeds prepared, creating the "correct"
>embouchure, etc., etc. This must be a business idea for someone. It really
>makes no sense to me as we've been living in the age of video and now CD's
>for a long time. Yet all this erudition is keeping book publishers in
>business which is fine. Can someone tell me why classes on video or CD
>aren't being done? How many students of clarinet have been suffering "bad"
>instruction when for the price of a lesson or a few, they could purchase a
>set of videos by Tony Pay or whoever. This should be a whole industry, no?

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