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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000477.txt from 2010/11

From: "Keith Bowen" <keith.bowen@-----.com>
Subj: Re: [kl] RES: Orchestral Pitch
Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2010 05:31:30 -0500

Jennifer

3 Hz difference is quite a lot in instrument design, when you play in the
comfortable centre of each note. You would tell it quite easily. That sort
of variation, however, can also be achieved by barrel length or pull out
plus mid-joint pull out plus embouchure control (as you discovered) plus
fingering variations or shading/half holing. E.g. if clarion G is sharp,
bring RH1 down to hover above the tone hole but not touching it. You can do
quarter tones this way also, by half-holing notes as on a recorder (tough to
do when it's a hole closed by a key pad of course).

The above is the mechanism by which we play 'locally just intonation'.

Keith

-----Original Message-----
From: Jennifer Jones [mailto:helen.jennifer@-----.com]
Sent: 28 November 2010 05:31
To: The Klarinet Mailing List
Subject: Re: [kl] RES: Orchestral Pitch

On Fri, Nov 12, 2010 at 4:07 PM, Tony Pay <tony.p@-----.org> wrote:
> These threads from the BBoard might be of interest:
>
> http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=303206&t=302700
>
> http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=304014&t=304014

This second thread, addresses tuning in general, rather than
instrument design. However, it fits with my thoughts on the
difficulty of designing one wind instrument to center precisely 3 Hz
from another wind instrument. The particular part that fits with my
sense of this difficulty, states that it is easier to be in tune if
one can adjust the pitch of a given note, such as in wind instruments,
as opposed to fixed pitch instruments like the piano or harpsichord.
That a given note on the clarinet is variable by lipping up or down
leads to the thought that a tight embouchure or high temperature would
sharpen the clarinet overall, as opposed to low temperatures and a
loose embouchure that flattens the clarinet's overall pitch.

This, of course, is a very basic level that I am thinking at. I can't
say how accomplished instrument designers manipulate such tonal
centering in wind instruments because I don't know enough about design
of instruments such as clarinets. I maintain that, if I were to
discuss clarinets designed to center on 440 as opposed to 443 Hz, it
could easily be analogous to being in my trance-like state, or what I
understand to be cloud-cuckoo land. Others who know more, may be
quite well grounded in the technical realities of the instrument when
discussing such distinctions.

The pitch creep links sound interesting, but, alas, as Peter Gentry
comments, I haven't developed the ear to distinguish the pitch at one
end compared to the other.

I got my tuner out to see if I could find a center to my clarinet.
With the quick attempts I made, I am able to play the three octaves of
A (concert pitch = clarinet B) in tune with either A=440 or A=443.
This is with a Selmer CL210 size 3.5 vandoren reed. My embouchure is
definitely tighter with A=443. I tried lipping each octave up or
down. High A (thumb forefinger and register key), I ranged from a 25
cent sharp G# to a 25 cent sharp A. Clarion A (all closed with
speaker key open), I ranged from a 45 cent sharp G# to a 15 cent sharp
A. And with chalumeau A, I ranged from 30 cent flat to 25 cents
sharp.

In band when the tuner went around, I was frequently sharp, so it
comes as no surprise to me that I am able to play A=443 through three
octaves without much difficulty.

-Jennifer
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