Saxophone Forum


by tsax_player
(76 posts)
8 years ago

Concertina da Camera

Hello, it is nice to drop in on the legit guys. I am senior in college majoring in jazz studies and I adjunct (saxophone/clarinet/flute) at a few area high/middle schools. I am teaching an eighth grader who is quite advanced for his age. He has hopes of being a jazz saxophonist (and shows much potential) but at the moment shows great strides in the classical world. We have worked through the Voxman book, and I have been giving him Ferling etudes for the past few weeks and he is eating them up! He approached me today about playing this Ibert piece and I am kind of hesitant. I have not introduced him to very much standard lit (he is only 14). Of course he has played the Bozza Aria, and movement 1, and 2 of the Creston, and Mozart Adagio & Allegro. I personally feel he should play more lit before attempting this for stylistic reasons. But I do not want to deny him attempting a great piece when he is capable of playing it. Anyway I thought I would go to the experts. I love the piece and have had the pleasure of playing on a few occasions. I was hoping to introduce him to the Tableaux or Creston before Ibert or Dubois pieces. As a jazz instructor I feel it is important to study Charlie Parker berfore John Coltrane so that you may thoroughly understand what Coltrane was doing. I feel this is a similar situation. Your input is greatly appreciated. Thanks, Tracy

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  1. by Gumptious
    (40 posts)

    8 years ago

    Re: Concertina da Camera

    I am playing the piece with an orchestra this sunday, so I have a lot of knowledge about it also. NUMBER 1: WHATEVER YOU DO...DO IT SLOWLY. NUMBER 2: TEACH HIM VIBRATO FIRST Its up to you, since no one here knows his level, to decide whether he is going to play it or not. But, along with number one, if you decide to let him play it...do it slowly with a metronome! This piece is not easily sight-read. Now, you ARE thinking yada yada yada like you know exactly what I'm talking about. Well, this is an 8th grader we're talking about. He cannot CANNOT EVER EVER go faster than he can play it cleanly. This is VERY cliche, but its more important than he will ever know until hes much older. If he plays it faster than he "musically" can (and he will try) his fingers will tense up. Even if he does it a couple times at a slower speed, when he tries to bump it up to 126 (Or on the 3rd movement, 132...O jeez!) he will not be able to play it no matter how hard he practices. For beginners, its so important not to play it faster AT ALL than he can at the moment. His fingers will tense up and he will plateau at a certain speed. If he plays it and practices with a metronome without ever rushing himself getting it up to speed...you will be able to turn that metronome up one notch day by day week by week without ever totally hitting that plataeu. More than ANYTHING on THAT song, dont ever let him practice faster than he can play it cleanly. Don't ever let him do it "just to see if he can". He may be able to, but the effects of it, like him being able to play it up to 132 BMP will be effected especially at his age. Very important ^^ Second, make sure he can play a nice pretty vibrato before he starts it. Tone and vibrato is part of this song, especially in the second movement. He should have a vibrato if he is that advanced, but if he's going to work on it...he must be too good of a player to let such little details go to waste. This could be a great development piece...let him develop in all areas musically as he learns this literature. Don't just let him learn the "notes". He can do it. Any dedicated saxophone player can do it IF THEY PRACTICE CORRECTLY. Incorrect practice is this only thing that stands in his way.

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    1. by tsax_player
      (76 posts)

      8 years ago

      Re: Concertina da Camera

      Thanks Gumptious, He is extremely teachable for his age. However any eigth grader who can out play most high school kids can be somewhat of a prima donna (he's a good kid). He hates the metronome like any kid his age. Fortunately (for him) his dad is a very accomplished percussionist and time issues do not fly in that household! I think you are right, if he is interested and dedicated he should have the opportunity to play it. Also thank you for mentioning vibrato. Of course his is non existant at this point in time. I think concept is what worries me not technique. I have played him recordings of Eugene Rousseau and others hoping style will sink in. I hope your perfomance is great this weekend. Tracy

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