Bassoon topics of study and practice. 
 
 
Bassooner or later you'll need to study this.
 
~ Points of interest for the serious bassoon student.
 
Let me get you started with a quote from Frank Zappa about the bassoon.
 
Frank said ; "The bassoon is one of my favorite instruments. It has the medieval aroma, like the days when everything used to sound like that. Some people crave baseball . . . . I find this unfathomable, but I can easily understand why a person could get excited about playing the bassoon."

 
How much do you practice?
Preparation for an important performance requires planning months in advance. Only a fool will try to take time to throw together a piece a week or two before the performance. The bassoon will NOT be your friend if you disrespect it like this! Here are some ideas for the bassoonist. Assuming that you are spending your practice time as efficiently as possible, depending on your level of accomplishment and the degree of difficulty of your music, you may need to schedule more than an hour of practice each day. The amount of time you practice is not only important for preparing your music, but also to help you stay in good mental and physical condition--to be strong enough to perform your piece. Ok then , in order to make sufficient progress, students playing the Weissenborn Advanced Studies or the Galliard sonatas need one hour of practice each day; students playing Milde Concert Studies, the Hindemith Sonata, or the Mozart Concerto in B-flat need 90 minutes of practice each day; and students playing Jancourt, Gambaro, or Bozza etudes and solo works by Tansman, Vivaldi, von Weber, or Hummel need at least two hours of practice each day.

 Your master plan to creativity

Choose a practice time appointment that you can keep every day. Maybe it's just before or just after your evening meal. Maybe it's right after or right before school. The routine of daily practice is very important.  Map out how you will spend your practice time. Here's a great schedule :

bullet 15 minutes of scales and arpeggios (major and melodic minor)

bullet 15 minutes of the weekly etude

bullet 30 minutes of the solo piece (or pieces)

Until you get used to the routine, watch the clock. Be sure to do scales for the full 15 minutes. As you become more adept and the speed of your major and minor scales and arpeggios increases, add whole tone scales and diminished seventh arpeggios.Above all, don't miss a day. You will never make up for a day of practice missed.

Setting Goals

You'll want to set goals for yourself along the way so that the preparation for the important performance is not too tedious. Work with your bassoon teacher to decide on appropriate goals. Here are some possibilities:

bullet You should be able to play your weekly etude "note perfectly" at your lesson.
bullet You should time yourself on the scales; try to play them faster WITHOUT MISTAKES!
bullet You should decide how much of the solo you must perfect per week in order to be ready for the performance. Tape record yourself each week to document your progress. Listen critically (not during your practice time!) and mark your music to help avoid recurring mistakes.

A basic assumption that most students learn how to practice primarily from their teachers. Most students fare adequately well in these circumstances; they learn to become self- motivating, creative in their approach to solving problems, and cognizant of the importance of organizing  time. Also, they have the freedom to discover for themselves what practicing techniques work best for them.   .

The term "practice" will refer only to the activity in which a musician spends time alone working to improve his instrumental skills. Furthermore, a student may find certain techniques more useful for him than others, regardless of the results of research experiments, which can only reflect the norm.

Getting the best tone on bassoon....

Formation of the bassoon embouchure involves five basic steps:
(1) Cover the upper and lower teeth with the lips. Some of the red part of the lips should be left showing.
(2) Insert about three-quarters of the blade's length into the center of the mouth.
(3) The jaws should form an overbite.
(4) The embouchure musicles should be focused toward the reed, i.e., draw the corners of the mouth inward.
(5) The chin should not bunch upward. Common embouchure problems include too little reed in the mouth (often caused by playing on a reed that is too hard), lips not covering the teeth enough (usually caused by embouchure tiredness), and biting. Embouchure and tone production problems can also be caused by an improper seating position.  When playing bassoon, the mouth and throat should be open and relaxed, as in singing. The proper pitch is achieved through support with the air, not by biting the reed. Relax and play out! DO NOT play timidly. The bassoon needs to be heard.

bullet Suggested.. " Etudes" for study :
bullet Weissenborn, Julius, Method for Bassoon,** vols. I and II.
bullet Milde, L. Concert Studies,** vol I.
bullet Concert Studies,* vol II.
bullet Studies in All Keys**
bullet Jancourt, Eugene, 26 Melodic Studies, (International).
bullet Bozza, Eugene, Quinze Etudes Journalieres, (Ledue).
bullet Orefici, Alberto, Melodic Studies, (International)
bullet Bravura Studies, (International).
bullet Rode, Pierre, 15 Caprices, (International).
bullet Bianchi, Virginio, Twelve Etudes for Bassoon, (G. Schirmer).

bullet Orchestral excerpt books:
bullet Stadio, Difficult Passages and Solos,* (Ricordi).
bullet Schoenbach, 20th Century Orchestry Studies, (G. Schirmer).
bullet Righini, Il Fagotto in Orchestra, (Ricordi).

bullet Solos with accompaniment:
bullet Mozart, W.A., Concerto,** K. 191 (Garfield ed. Edition Musicus).
bullet Hindemith, Paul., Sonata,* (Schott).
bullet Telemann, G.P., Sonata in F Minor,* (International).
bullet Saint-Saens, C.,Sonata,* (Leduc)
bullet Vivaldi, A., Ten Bassoon Concerti, vols. I and II, *(G. Schirmer).
bullet Concerto in A Minor, (Ricordi)
bullet Concerto in Bb Major (La Notte), (International).
bullet Galliard, J. E., Six Sonatas, vols. I and II,* (International).
bullet Weber, C. M. von, Concerto in F,* (International).
bullet Ungarische Fantasie
bullet Phillips, Burrill, Concert Piece, (Carl Fischer).
bullet Etler, Alvin, Sonata, (Associated).
bullet Hummel, J.N., Concerto, (International).
bullet Tansman, Alexander, Sonatine, (Max Eschig).
bullet Suit, (Max Eschig).
Devienne/ Mozart, Concerto in Bb Major, (Peters).
bullet Bozza, Eugene, Recit, Sicilienne, et Rondo, (Leduc).
bullet Fantasie, (Leduc).
bullet Concertino, (Leduc).
bullet Jacob, Gordon, Concerto for Bassoon and Strings, (Joseph Williams).
bullet Stamitz, Karl, Concerto in F Major, (Sikorski).
bullet Bordeau, E., Premiere Solo, (Rubank).
bullet Pierne, Gabriel, Solo de Concert, (Leduc).
bullet Senaille, J.B., Allegro Spiritoso, (Southern).
bullet Besozzi, Jerome, Sonata, (Oxford).
          

bullet Bassoon solo ;
bullet Persichetti, Vincent, Parable for Solo Bassoon, (Elkan-Vogel).
bullet Jacob, Gordon, Partita for Solo Bassoon, (Oxford University Press).
bullet Arnold, Malcolm, Fantasy for Bassoon, (Faber Music).
bullet Osborne, Willson, Rhapsody for Bassoon Alone, (Peters).
bullet Bach , J.S., Six Suites for Violoncello Solo, (International). This is vital for all!!

bullet Books for further study ;
bullet The Art of Bassoon Playing by William Spencer
bullet Bassoon Reed Making by Mark Popkin/Lorin Glickman
bullet Bassoon Reed-Making: A basic Technique by Christopher Weat
bullet Bassoon Performance Practices and Teaching in the United States and Canada by Ronald Klimko
bullet The Bassoon and Contrabassoon by Lyndesay Langwill
bullet The Bassoon and Doublebassoon: A Short Illustrated History... by Lyndesay Langwill
bullet The Bassoon by Heckel/Langwill/Waples
bullet Bassoon Technique by Archie Camden
bullet The Bassoon Reed Profile and Measurement by Thomas Palmer
bullet The Contrabassoon by Cornelia Biggers
bullet The Art of Wind Playing by Arther Weisberg