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 New bassoonist here
Author: Alex K. 
Date:   2015-01-04 06:51

I hope you can help me. How did you learn to play the bassoon? I started playing a month or two ago and I think I'm doing good. I am doubling from clarinet. Anything I should know? Any "tricks", per se? I know it takes a long time to master it, but just need to understand the basics. Thanks!

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 Re: New bassoonist here
Author: Jaysne 
Date:   2015-04-18 00:28

I learned to play the bassoon in grad school. I was there as a saxophone player, but was also going for my teaching certificate, so I needed to learn all the band instruments. I took two-and-half months of weekly lessons with a bassoon major at the university.

There are no tricks. If you're looking for a short cut, there is only one: get a private teacher. A teacher will show you how to play correctly and how to avoid bad habits.

Without a teacher who knows what they are doing, you will spend a lot of extra time learning how to do things, and most likely you will learn how to do them wrong. The only thing similar to clarinet are a few of the fingerings. Everything else, when done correctly, is in a different universe that can only be really learned with a teacher.

Playing the basics on the bassoon is a fairly complicated process and is not anything that can be learned via emails here. You need a real bassoonist sitting by your side.

I haven't even mentioned reeds. The bassoon double reed has nothing to do with clarinet reeds. It also is a different universe. With no mouthpiece to hold in your mouth, your embouchure becomes even more crucial for keeping notes in tune. Without a teacher, you will either be incredibly sharp or incredibly flat.

I hope you get a teacher. Bassoon is a wonderfully fun instrument to play, but you need to learn how to play it correctly if you want to get anywhere with it. (And by the way, you mentioned mastering the instrument. No one ever masters an instrument.)

Post Edited (2015-10-29 16:59)

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