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 breathing problem
Author: Stephanie 
Date:   2001-10-30 22:06

Ok, I was working on one of our all state pieces from the Klose book. I think is was page 222, start at beginning and end on line 6, measure 3 beat 1. The actual playing is not that hard, but I have trouble getting a breath in, especially in such short periods of time. I keep having to breathe every 2 measures or so. I have always had trouble breathing properly. Can someone tell me how to take in a large breath so quickly or how to make a small one last longer? I would appreciate it. Oh, and while I'm thinking of it, does anyone know where I can get an AL all state practice tape? The director here said she would record one for me, but that was months ago. I reminded her, but I guess she's just too busy with marching season. I need one soon if I can get one. I just do a lot better if I can hear what it's supposed to sound like. Thanks in advance.

Stephanie

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 RE: breathing problem
Author: GBK 
Date:   2001-10-31 01:37

Stephanie...In this particular exercise there are no written rests, therefore some of the note values will have to be slightly shortened to accomodate your places to breathe. As a general rule, try not to break up running passages of notes to breathe, as this will disrupt the flow of the music.
The suggested breath marks in the exercise are fine. If you need additional places to breathe, follow the pattern already established by taking breaths after the first eighth note on beat 1 of any measure where you feel you are running short of air.
The eighth note can be slightly shorter to leave you room to breathe. Do not break up the triplet patterns - breathe either before or after them....GBK

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 RE: breathing problem
Author: sarah 
Date:   2001-10-31 02:38

My friend used to type her audition music into a notation program, like finale and play it back. I think she would either hold a tape recorder up to the speakers or burn a cd so she could listen to it on the way to auditions. I know it's not the same as hearing someone play it, but I think doing this helped her with rhythms and partials (she played euphonium).
sarah

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 RE: breathing problem
Author: Sue 
Date:   2001-10-31 08:12

Are you breathing in the right way? Do you breathe to fill your lungs or do you breathe shallowly, filling only the top part of your lungs? You should practise standing up to increase the volume in your lungs.

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 RE: breathing problem
Author: Gordon (NZ) 
Date:   2001-10-31 10:57

If you have any tendency to asthma or allergy-type problems your bronchial tubes may be constrictin, meaning you simply cannot get a lot of air in quickly. A doctor may be able to help. Plenty exercise (that works the lungs hard) may help with deeper, faster breathing.

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 RE: breathing problem
Author: Ken Shaw 
Date:   2001-10-31 17:11

Stephanie -

Here's what I posted almost two years ago:

For me, what works is inhaling starting from the bottom -- from my hips -- and continuing until my chest rises by itself, pushed up from beneath.

Two exercises are good for this.

The first was taught to me by the great teacher Keith Stein many years ago. Suck your belly, and then let it drop down and out, making a "pot belly." An instant later, breath all the way down to the bottom, filling your lungs up from bottom to top.

When you're full of air, relax and let it flow out. You don't blow -- you let the weight of your chest and of the air do the work. If you push at all, it should be down, not up. You want the feeling of your air stream connecting directly with the reed and the sound, so that the sound almost becomes part of your body -- so that you can "taste" it. Listen to the live recital recordings of Harold Wright, where this is very audible.

A second exercise to get the air in is to open your mouth and inhale saying "Hulp!" (without voicing it). This opens up your throat and fills your lungs from bottom to top.

You'll probably get a little dizzy from hyperventilation the first few times you do this. Don't worry. Once you get used to it, everything will be fine.

For more, it's worthwhile to read about the great master of breath exercises, Arnold Jacobs, the legendary tuba player in the Chicago Symphony. There is a site devoted to him at http://www.windsongpress.com. Look under Breathing Devices to see the things he developed. I don't think the prices are too high. Then go to the notes on his master classes. They're a revalation. You can find them at http://euph.pair.com/jacobs.html , http://www.windsongpress.com/tributes/NYCBS.htm http://web.missouri.edu/~cceric/mclass/index.html and http://www.windsongpress.com/tributes/scarlett.htm

Finally, once you learn to get a lot of air in, you need to start thinking about phrasing -- making breaks even when you don't need to breathe. Nothing is more uncomfortable than listening to a player who goes on forever without breathing making you feel suffocated and turn blue in the face because they keep on going and never take a breath and you feel that they ought to be uncomfortable because you are and you're about to die for going on and not taking a breath even though you need to sometime only there's never any stop (see what I mean).

Best regards.

Ken Shaw

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 RE: breathing problem
Author: Uwe 
Date:   2001-11-01 06:28

I have a book about breathing, but it is in german:

Robert Kreutzer: Stütze - Atemtechnik für Bläser (Ait support- breathing technique for windplayers) It is very good. If you understand some german, give it a try.

-- Uwe

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