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What makes Barbara Butler and Charles Geyer so amazing?



 
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jjtrumpet
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 9:26 am    Post subject: What makes Barbara Butler and Charles Geyer so amazing? Reply with quote

Let me start off by saying that I have the utmost respect for these two. This isn't a complaining sort of question, more of a question that stems from utter fascination.

They seem to be living legends in trumpet education land, and I was wondering if anyone could put their finger on just what makes them so good. Yes their students get jobs. Yes they're at one of the top schools in the country. But WHY!?

...and I don't mean explanations like "they're just good at teaching." There must be something more!
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Miketpt
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They get the best students.

Their program gets the students performing for each other on a biweekly basis. (studio and excerpt class).

They are excellent at finding the missing/weak parts of each individual student's playing and helping them address it/them.

They instill the fact that you need to be your own teacher.

These are just a few thoughts that come to mind.

Mike
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ltkije1966
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 10:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I think it's two pronged...

From what I saw at one of their masterclasses at NU, "They're just good at teaching" their students to identify weak spot and target their practicing effectively. But, they developed a stellar reputation early in their careers. So, yes, it must be more than that.

They consistently work at elite schools where they can select top notch trumpet players to start with. I doubt they could walk into a glorified community college and have that same success. They have the luxury that the baseline from which their students start is a lot higher than most teachers enjoy. And, they have themselves to thank for that!

Their playing, students, story, etc. are remarkable:

http://www.northbynorthwestern.com/story/trumpets/
(I know Bryant, he's a fantastic player, too)

http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20110211/entlife/702119889/
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Turkle
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read an article about them recently, I don't remember where. One of the things that makes them special, according to the article, is supporting an environment that is both collaborative and competitive, in which every player is helping the others get better while providing enough pressure to be constantly working to exceed the others. That kind of community environment means that it's not just about "are the students world-class" (which they are) or "are the teachers world-class" (which they are), but are you providing an environment in which students and teachers alike can exceed what they could do alone or without that kind of community support?

I think it's clear that they are providing precisely that kind of both supportive and competitive environment. That means a whole lot. I know from personal experience that given the right environment and community, one is driven to exceed one's abilities. (And the opposite is also true - a bad community can prevent one from realizing one's abilities.)
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jjtrumpet
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
"Students usually study primarily with either Butler or Geyer, but they receive feedback from the other at group events or critiques. The students and professors both pointed to this teaching method as part of the reason for the success of the studio."


What a simple, yet important idea. Trumpet professors who don't do this, should!


http://www.northbynorthwestern.com/story/trumpets/

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stephensontrumpet
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What Miketpt said...they actively push their students, and force them to perform mutiple times a week for the studio, and get multiple teaching opportunities a week (rep class, studio class, lessons, etc)

Both Charlie and Barbara have very different personalities and teaching styles, and they are good at reading what kind of instruction each student needs.

Also, their studios have great report with each other, and are supportive of each other.
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LaTrompeta
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simple formula

Best Teachers + Best Students = Best Results

I know many great players who were not accepted to their program. It may be the hardest program to get into anywhere.
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JayV
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 12:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Having performed with and/or studied with several trumpeters from that studio, I think the biggest difference is the professionalism they encourage in their students. It seems like every Butler/Geyer student I've played with is a good section player with stable rhythm, excellent ability to blend, good ears, and stable consistent production. I do not hear extreme virtuosity or "outside the box" playing, but deeply competent and stable playing. I think in many cases this stability and deeper competence comes with maturity, but many of the people coming out of that studio sound mature from a younger age. Of course now, yes, they get many of the most talented students who are interested in traditional trumpet careers flocking to them so the effect is compounded. Great teachers, unquestionably.
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CJceltics33
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 07, 2020 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

None of the links above works for me. Anywhere else I can find these articles?


If you haven't seen this, highly recommended! https://thatsnotspit.com/2019/08/01/barbara-butler-ep-23/
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trptcolin
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2020 4:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayback Machine to the rescue:
- http://web.archive.org/web/20190327005126/https://www.northbynorthwestern.com/story/trumpets/
- http://web.archive.org/web/20160512224926/http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20110211/entlife/702119889/
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kehaulani
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2020 7:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure you can get a balanced answer without throwing into the mix, for comparison, Jeanne Pocius, Claude Gordon, James Stamp. etc.
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LaTrompeta
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2020 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never met many of those people mentioned, but I have met Butler & Geyer. They are very demanding and have a discerning ear.
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trumpetplanet
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2020 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently read a book called The Talent Code, by Daniel Coyle.
I think you'll find all of your answers there.
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