7 Ways to Improve Your Clarinet Playing This Summer!

ClarinetMike says, “Take Clarinet Lessons This Summer!”

7 Ways to Improve Your Clarinet Playing This Summer!
by Dr. Michael Dean “ClarinetMike”

  1. Take Clarinet Lessons. Make sure you have a good teacher who spends time improving your clarinet basics and teaching you how to practice.  Rote-only clarinet teachers are BAD clarinet teachers.
  2. Upgrade Embouchure.Check out my 5-C clarinet embouchure HERE and related embouchure tips HERE.
  3. Improve Tonguing. Spend quality time with your new best friend, Betty: CLICK HERE.
  4. Enhance Posture.  Check out these posture links:  Head PositionDon’t Lean OverDon’t Look Down, and Unkink Your Hose.
  5. Get Better Reeds. I strongly recommend checking out the ReedGeek – I find the ReedGeek easy to use and it really helps! Also, make sure your reed strength matches your mouthpiece. For example, if you are playing on a 2.5 reed on a more “closed” mouthpiece such as a Vandoren M13 Lyre (what I play on), you simply cannot play well or at all in the high register without biting the mouthpiece hard since the reed is not strong enough. [Biting is BAD, folks!] FYI, on my Bb clarinet, I play a Vandoren v12 3.5 reed on a Vandoren M13 Lyre mouthpiece using 5-C Clarinet Embouchure (listen).
  6. Learn New Practice Techniques. Try these out: Rhy-No PracticeFeed The Rhy-No!The Fast Way!Note Grouping, and others.
  7. Play Duets.Get together with your buddies and have FUN playing chamber music – duets, trios, quartets, etc…. Go to the local music store and buy a duet book (ALL of us must support local music stores!). Of course, there’s a lot of free music on the Internet.

BONUS: Go To A Summer Band or Clarinet Camp. For example, in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas there are several: CLICK HERE.

About ClarinetMike

American Clarinetist Michael Dean “ClarinetMike” performs and teaches internationally and across the USA to consistent praise such as, “world-class clarinetist and pedagogue,” “consummate performer,” “inspirational,” “outstanding teacher,” “super,” “brilliant performer,” and “one of the best clinicians I have ever seen.” Dr. Dean’s career is headlined by appearances at Carnegie Hall, ClarinetFest, NACWPI, Royal Northern College of Music, and Eastman School of Music, with recent recitals and master classes in Italy, Spain, Canada, Michigan, Ohio, Kansas, Iowa, Louisiana, and Texas. He recently returned for a fourth summer to the beautiful Italian Alps of Vipiteno, Italy as Clarinet Artist Faculty in Residence at the international Orfeo Music Festival. He is featured on 6 commercial CD’s including his soon-to-be-released new CD, Postcards from Silver Lake. He is also prominent on New Media, such as YouTube. He was clarinetist with the Paducah Symphony Orchestra for 11 years and he’s also performed with the Southwest Symphony, Nevada Symphony, Abilene Philharmonic, Southeast Chamber Players, Red Mesa Trio, and Duo 35. He has given more than 500 master classes, clinics and performances at universities, conservatories, conferences, festivals, high schools, junior high schools, and a diverse array of venues. As “ClarinetMike,” he writes for his noted and widely-read ClarinetMike Blog – viewed in 150 countries on 6 continents, clarinetmike.wordpress.com. His blog is the #1 clarinet blog on the Internet according to Google Search and a recent ranking on Feedspot. His articles also appear in professional journals such as the Southwestern Musician, The Bandmasters’ Review, WINDPLAYER, and NACWPI Journal. He is a past president and former officer on the National Board of the National Association of College Wind and Percussion Instructors (NACWPI). After a successful 20 years of teaching clarinet at the university level, he relocated to his native Texas due to family concerns. He is currently an active clarinet and woodwind performer, teacher, clinician, blogger, and consultant based in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas. Dr. Michael Dean studied clarinet performance at Texas Tech University, University of Texas at Austin, University of Colorado at Boulder, and University of Texas at Arlington. His teachers include Robert Walzel, Phil Aaholm, Carol Jessup, Bob Ackerman, and Jess Youngblood. He is a BG France Performing Artist and his professional website is clarinetmike.com. Mike and his family live in Hurst, Texas. His family’s new Golden Retriever, Nimbus, is a relative of Andy.
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1 Response to 7 Ways to Improve Your Clarinet Playing This Summer!

  1. Pingback: Top 10 Clarinet Things To Do On Summer Break! | ClarinetMike Blog

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