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Clarke's Technical Studies (SA)



 
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trjeam
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2002 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know that the first time threw with the Clarke's technical studies I am working for accuracy. I was just wondering if when doing these exercises is it necessary to take all the repeats?
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_PhilPicc
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2002 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

trjeam,

In my book it tells you what to do at the top of the page. I'm playing out of H. L. Clark Technical Studies for the Cornet. (Carl Fischer 1984). I do the repeats but not the sixteen times on the first.

HTH,
Phil
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We cannot expect you to be with us all the time, but perhaps you could be good enough to keep in touch now and again."
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Blue Devil
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Joined: 04 Jan 2002
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2002 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trjeam,

I'm up to Lesson 8 in the SA book, and from everything that I have seen and read about the program (a lot of which has been from this forum), you are not only trying to learn the Clarke exercises the first time through, but also still trying to develop some wind control and endurance at the same time. I would think that won't happen if you just play each repeat only once. Believe me, I know it would be a lot less time consuming to do only one repeat (especially when you are up to doing three of the Clarke exercises each week, each with a different tonguing style), but I think you wouldn't gain the extra intended benefits by shortening the exercises.
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trjeam
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2002 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the responses. I just read threw my Brass Playing is no Harder Than Deep Breathing book and Claude Gordon does say to play it the way that it is written.

Blue Devils I was just wondering how long does it take you a day to do a lesson?
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Blue Devil
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2002 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trjeam,

It probably takes me between 2 1/2 - 3 hours total each day - but not in one session. I do the Part I exercises and then rest at least an hour like the book says. When I come back, I then do the slur exercise, with several repeats for each fingering. When Claude says "review" the other slur exercises from previous weeks, I usually repeat each fingering once, going through all of the previous exercises that way. I figure I'm still "reviewing", by going through each fingering of each exercise once, and yet it doesn't take me hours and hours on this part.

I then usually rest for an hour or more, depending on what else I have going on that day, and then come back and do the three Clarke exercises in one sitting if I have to, with short (5 minute or so) rests in between each exercise.

You bring up a good point with your question - to do this program, you really have to be dedicated and willing to put the time in (then again, I don't think there is any program that can get you to an advanced level of playing without requiring a lot of practice). I do all of what I mentioned above, every day, while still maintaing my full time job, and going to 3 or more full ensemble rehearsals in the evenings each week. There are times when I'm playing for a musical or something that it is even more hectic than that. I have worked these practice sessions into my schedule pretty creatively though (i.e. usually doing the Part I exercises in my car in some parking lot while I am on my lunch hour, etc.).

I know what you mean when you say that it is a lot of work, but I think that if you can figure out the best way to fit the lessons into your day in shorter groupings, it won't seem like a lot all at once.

If you want success that badly, once you start seeing results, it starts to really become worth it.

Mike Trzesniak
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trjeam
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2002 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for saying that. I thought I was alone. It takes me about 4 hours a day to do my lesson including the rest time. I use to think that I was doing something wrong and thats why I was taking so long to do each lesson.
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John Mohan
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Joined: 13 Nov 2001
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2002 3:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I am reading some confusion here.

Trjeam, you wrote that you read through Claude's "Brass Playing Is No Harder Than Deep Breathing" book, and that it says to do the Clarkes "as written" when going though it the first time. I hope you (and anybody reading this thread) understand that Claude meant to do only ONE repeat on each exercise when going through the first time. In other words, not "what is written" in Clarke's text in the book, but simply what is written in the actual exercises.

And I want to add that one should not try to play the exercises softly the first time through the book. You should play in an easy comfortable volume, getting louder as you go up and slightly softer as you go lower.

The first time through the book (with the various articulations that Claude assigns) serves several purposes:

1) Learning the Exercises

2) Developing the Fingers

3) Developing all the muscles involved in playing (face, breathing muscles, etc.)

4) Learning to think "tee" on higher notes and "tah" on lower notes ("watching the tongue")


Later, as you develop and when you have thoroughly mastered all the exercises is when you go back to the beginning and start playing softer (without "pinching-off" the sound) and adding repeats.

By the way, this is not only the way Claude assigned the exercises in the book - this is the actual way Herbert L. Clarke assigned the exercises to his many students, including Earl D. Irons and of course, Claude Gordon.

One last note: Be aware that in the latest addition of the book, some un-named reviser has re-written Clarke's own words in some of the text in the book!!!!

The text for the Ninth Study should read:

"Each of the following chromatic scales advances one step higher and each one is to be played four or more times in one breath. No strain is necessary if played correctly."

Those are Clarke's original words, which appear in all but the current edition of the book. Now his "words" read:

"Each of the following exercises should be played four or more times in one breath. You will not need to strain on the high notes if you keep your lips flexible and avoid playing too loudly."

I can't begin to imagine what Clarke would do to the jerk that changed his own words, but I'm sure it would be quite violent and leave a rather unpleasent mess to be cleaned up.

Sincerely,

John Mohan
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Blue Devil
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2002 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John -

Thanks for your clarification. I see where some of the confusion came in. I went back and re-read my response, and realized what I meant to say. I think I was confusing the phrase "one repeat" with "one time through". From past postings, I did know (and have been doing) the Clarke exercises the first time through them as written with one repeat.

Thanks too, for all of the valuable information that you contribute to this forum. I stumbled upon the SA book in a local music store and decided to buy it, only for the reason that I thought it was organized very well - 52 lessons to spend a week each on (from this forum I know two weeks each now). At the time I had no idea of the significance of the book at the time. Then after I found this website, I realized just how much of a place the SA book and Claude Gordon have in brass education. Your comments here have greatly extended and clarified information from the book.

I have been playing out of the book in a very dedicated manner for about the last four months, and the results have been great. I do a lot of playing in pit orchestras for local community theater, so I really respect your playing resume.

Please keep up the great work and feedback in this forum!!

Mike Trzesniak
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