There is a great deal to consider when you learn how to play clarinet. Here are a few thoughts to help you on your journey.
The clarinet has a beautiful tone and a wide range of notes. It has been heard in chamber music to symphonic music, jazz, and pop. Take clarinet lessons at select schools or online from the comfort of your home. We invite you to try a free trial class.
Getting the Most Out of Your experience
Class preparation, practice time, setting reasonable goals, and having fun are all involved in getting the best out of clarinet lessons. Here are a few tips to get the most out of your sessions –
Prepare for the Class
Arrive or begin to set up about 15 minutes before your lesson so you can be ready to go as soon as your lesson time begins. This is important even if you choose online clarinet lessons. It is important to be ready to learn physically and emotionally and starting this process before your lesson will increase the chances of a succesful session.
Generally, the trickiest part of your first few classes is assembly and reed preparation. Take the time to grease your corks, which you will have to do each time for a while. This will help with assembly. Make sure your reed is wet and aligned properly on the mouthpiece. Learn more about setting the reed and clarinet assembly with “First Songs for Band.”
The most important part of your clarinet is your reed. When you blow air across the reed, the reed is vibrated to create your clarinet’s beautiful signature sound. Thus, great care must be taken to ensure that the reed is properly moistened and is protected to prevent cracking, chipping, or any other damage. If you have time, try to warm up for a few minutes before your lesson.
Assembling the Instrument
Once you learn to assemble the various clarinet pieces and put the reed in place, you are ready to go, right? Well, it’s not that simple. Unlike instruments like drums, guitar, and piano, you are not guaranteed to produce a tone by simply pressing a key or plucking a string. Many nuances go into tone production. Learning how to play clarinet can be musical and pleasing or make people run screaming from the room. What makes the difference is finding a qualified teacher. One who can take you through the proper steps of forming an embouchure and avoiding some common mistakes. Learn more about the wonderful instructors that teach our FMI students. About Our Teachers.
Proper Positioning for your chin
There are many facets to a well-formed embouchure for woodwind instruments, but one of the most common errors involves your chin. Yes, to start, clarinet players need to address the bottom lip, teeth, corners of the mouth and the tip of the reed, but the subject clarinet players often miss is the shape of the chin. A flat chin is the goal. Bunching the chin is common, creating a puffy pillow in the center of your chin. Stretching the lip across the bottom teeth and pointing your chin downward will help improve your tone immensely. Again, the goal is to play with a pleasing, conversational tone, not a harsh squeaky sound. To practice, find a mirror, and check how your mouth formation affects the sound you produce.
Practice In-Between Sessions
Practicing is an essential aspect of mastering any new concept. Unfortunately, many new musicians are misguided when it comes to practice. It is not all about how long you practice, but instead, it is important to practice consistently – even consistent short sessions. Using your practice time effectively means sessions are not too long. Using your time effectively consistently gives the most significant opportunity for success and joy.
Studies show that even five minutes of focused practice is more effective than 30 minutes of unfocused practice. However, as long as you can practice, doing so without distractions is optimal. Improving throughout the week helps you get the most from your clarinet lessons because you will not have to repeat the information you learned previously. Your classes will be full of new information that you can practice at home and implement. watch a presentation on effective practice and its effects on the brain.
Setting Goals and Having Fun
Like anything else, attitude is the difference between success and failure. Having reasonable expectations and enjoying the journey will lead to a lifelong opportunity to love and appreciate the music you can play. Be flexible throughout the process, and be realistic about what you can accomplish from your clarinet lessons. Realize there will be ups and downs along the way. There will be times when you need extra help during a session and other times when you cover multiple lessons in one sitting.
Try a free class and see if Clarinet Lessons are a good fit for you
This short advice is part of the ongoing learning you receive during lessons with a qualified clarinet teacher. My particular philosophy in teaching any musical instrument is that making a pleasing tone with musical phrasing and a strong sense of pulse is key to musicianship. All lessons ultimately enhance these skills so learning how to play clarinet on any level is rewarding, easy to listen to, and brings joy to the performer.
Fundamental Music Instruction offers music classes for a wide selection of instruments. You can choose from Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, French Horn, Drums, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Violin, Piano, Viola, Cello, and Bass. Learn more about Fundamental Music Instruction and our mission Visit FundamentalMusicInstruction.com.
Please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected], call us at 908-244-4943, or sign up for a free music lesson at select schools or try a free private clarinet lesson online HERE! We can’t wait to fill your world with music!