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 Playing an A with RH fingers down
Author: Nomenclature 
Date:   2019-06-28 21:50

Looking through a clarinet tutor book this morning, I discovered an exercise dealing with going over the break. The exercise was an A to a B in minims repeated for a few bars. It said to keep the right hand fingers down throughout the exercise. Is this correct? I was never taught to do this. Should you do this in pieces? Doesn't it affect the tuning of the A? I didn't have my clarinet at hand to check re tuning.

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 Re: Playing an A with RH fingers down
Author: bmcgar 2017
Date:   2019-06-28 22:05

It's correct as long as it doesn't throw the tuning off too bad (which it rarely does). Actually, it's likely to improve it an make the note resonate better.

No reason to take the RH fingers off if it doesn't cause a problem, and leaving them down can help a lot going to the clarion and above.

Forget what's "correct." Try it yourself and decide on your own.


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 Re: Playing an A with RH fingers down
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2019-06-29 00:00

Do this on any intervals from open G to throat Bb to any upper register note by keeping the relevant RH fingers held down to both make things smoother and also adding resonance to the open G and throat notes.

Around ten or so years back I had someone complain their clarinet wasn't playing well when they went from throat Bb to B - only they didn't hold any RH fingers down to aid the jump. I told them to keep their RH fingers down and showed them using both mine and on their clarinet (with my mouthpiece) to check if it was their clarinet at fault and it was fine. Only they absolutely refused to believe what I was showing them as they pretty much said "I've been playing clarinet since the 1950s and I'm not having you tell me what to do as you're just a repairer and not a teacher." I spoke to their teacher about this and he too said it was like talking to a brick wall when it came to trying to teach him.


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