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 Tremolo assistance
Author: fernpod 
Date:   2018-03-06 17:38

Dear Experts and Forum Readers:

What might be a workable strategy to execute a tremolo between middle line Bb and top line Eb? Any shortcuts beyond right hand down throughout and a frantic left hand?

I shall welcome insights. Thanks!

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: Ken Lagace 
Date:   2018-03-06 17:49

Top space Eb?
Play on an A clarinet B-E?

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: fernpod 
Date:   2018-03-06 19:12

Thank you very much Mr. Lagace for your lightning quick reply. As a mere community band player/clarinet hobbyist, I own no A clarinet to employ in this situation.

Best wishes to you and yours.

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2018-03-06 19:37

That is bad writing on the composer's or arranger's behalf - it can be done by sliding just your left thumb and index finger from the thumb tube and LH1 tonehole to the speaker and throat A keys whilst keeping all your other fingers down for the Eb.


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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: Philip Caron 
Date:   2018-03-06 19:41

Move only the LH index and thumb. The Bb will sound ok with all those other fingers left in place.

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: fernpod 
Date:   2018-03-06 19:54

Thank you for the tip of maintaining all fingers on the instrument but the LH thumb and LH index finger to sound the Bb. I'm sure I would never have come upon this suggestion without your help.

Either the piece's arranger requiring this technically challenging workaround was either insufficiently familiar with Bb clarinet fingerings, or like you fine folks, an absolute master player who figured everybody knows how to do this.

Cheers to you!

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: Philip Caron 
Date:   2018-03-06 22:14

Depending on your equipment, the Bb played that way may actually sound better than the standard "all open" fingering. It's common to close some of those holes to improve sound and tuning of throat tones; those are sometimes called resonance fingerings, and they apply to sustained pitches as well as occasionally facilitating intervals like the tremolo described. The specific fingerings can vary from instrument to instrument and player to player.

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: ClarinetRobt 
Date:   2018-03-06 23:27

Thinking kinda outside of the box. You might check the score and see if the flutes are doing something similar. Perhaps you can take it down an octave and use 1+1 Eb for the tremelo. Or take it up an octave and use 1+1 for the Bb.

This is rewriting the piece and certainly changes the composer’s intention. But it might be fun to investigate it.

~Robert L Schwebel
Mthpc: Behn Vintage, Lig: Ishimori, Reed: Aria 4, Legere Euro Signature 3.75, Horns: Uebel Superior, Ridenour Lyrique

Post Edited (2018-03-07 02:16)

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2018-03-07 01:33

I'm curious about what the piece is. Is it a transcription of something that was originally orchestral? Who is the composer (or the arranger if it's a transcription)?


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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: zhangray4 
Date:   2018-03-07 03:16

I remember when I played Eric Whitacre's "Lux Aurumque" (transcribed for band by the composer himself), the clarinets had to tremolo from throat Bb to the D right above it. So I guess some composers don't really check to see if what they composed is actually playable.

-- Ray Zhang

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: fernpod 
Date:   2018-03-07 03:36

Thanks everyone for your interest and suggestions! I'll give each strategy a try when I practice the piece.

-K.E. Kays

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 Re: Tremolo assistance
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2018-03-07 06:50

Something else to consider, though it depends on the musical context and the conductor's concern for the level of polish in the performance:

If all three (four?) clarinet parts have tremolos using different notes of the chord, it might be possible for the conductor to do a little re-arranging and reassign the notes involved so everyone’s tremolos are playable. The shimmering effect could be preserved and even improved if the clarinetists don’t have to use kludgy fingerings to play the notes.


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