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Showing posts from February, 2019

Orchestral Excerpts

Orchestral Excerpts
Orchestral excerpts are short selections of music taken from actual horn parts that have been chosen based on their difficulty and particular skills they can highlight from a person’s playing. These excerpts cover each of the four standard horn positions and can range from exposed solos to section playing and even sometimes to sections that are not heard over an orchestra. This is the music that most professional ensembles use for auditions. You will see these excerpts popping up your entire career from being a student and taking ensemble auditions through when you are trying to find employment. As horn players, we are extremely luck to have an online resource that highlights the most common excerpts asked on auditions. Daren Robbins surveyed horn auditions from across the world and created a website that has the music for each of these excerpts, along with several recording for reference. This is an amazing place to start when learning excerpts. You can find it at

Unaccompanied Works

Unaccompanied Works
For my lecture recital at UMKC, I decided to do a survey of unaccompanied works for horn. Each work includes a brief bio of the composer and a video clip of the piece being performed. My focus was on the extended techniques required throughout each work. I wanted to highlight the different influences composers draw from in their lives and how they come out through their writing for unaccompanied horn.
https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1qSeJJstnVYhYk7x6ks6vFE5x-oPju0HA8K2Ezyj7fqE

Etudes

Etudes
Etudes are short studies that are built to make you a more well-rounded horn player and musician. They come in a variety of construction types with many different outcomes. Some are progressive and cover all types of issues, while some are collections that target specific problems head on. If you are just starting to dive into etudes, the following are a great place to begin:
Maxime Alphonse - 200 Progressive Studies Alphonse created a set of 200 etudes over the course of 6 books. They start simple with a focus on detail and begin to progress and expand in range and difficulty over time. You can find them online for free at: https://imslp.org/wiki/200_%C3%89tudes_nouvelles_m%C3%A9lodiques_et_progressives_pour_cor_(Alphonse,_Maxime)
Max P Pottag - Preparatory Melodies to Solo Work for French Horn Pottag’s books are also progressive, but move at a quicker pace. His studies are created around challenges faced in our solo and orchestra repertoire. These are great for a more advanced stu…

Warm Ups

Warm Ups
Creating a daily warm up, or routine, is a necessity. This can cover a wide range of exercises and you can use this time to incorporate your fundamental practice as well. Most teachers have their own ideas and their own version of a warm up. What I recommend is trying out everything that you can find. A lot of teachers have published their versions and they are available for free or for purchase online. A simple google search will get you to more warm ups than you could ever want. Take parts from each that you like and slowly build your own routine. I like to have one that lasts around an hour to really cover everything that gets me prepared for the day, but I also have a short 15-20 minute routine for days when I just do not have the luxary time. Here are some tips for building your own warm up:
1 - start with something slow. Find some simple buzzing exercises, both with and without the mouthpiece, and cover a limited range and get your face to start waking up
2 - breathing. It…