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Where are all the Oboists..

A resurrection thread

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#16 A.U.K

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 16:14

Thanks Andrew ...

I am struggling with finding reeds that make my oboe sing. I have moved to Howarth Dragon reeds - I dont think they are too soft and often find they are closed up.I get tantalising snatches of the 'sweet spot' but it doesnt seem to last for long. I think I am battling against them rather than with them if you know what i mean. I am working with my teacher on the long notes and oohhs etc. She often mentions about changing embouchure for higher notes and dropping my jaw etc but I am not consciously aware that I am doing this (I dont think I am!) - I need to start practising infront of a mirror.

 

 

I have just adopted a very timid cat so have refrained from practising this week week in case I send him up the curtains!

 

 

Reeds Reeds Reeds, they can be the bane of our lives, you are not alone, I have been tweaking and searching through my reeds as I have a lesson on thursday and want one that doesn't require me to battle with it but plays the game nicely..out of twenty I have narrowed it down to five with three in the running for the top spot but it could all change by the morning..The Dragon reeds are similar I think the former Howarth "Academy" reeds and had a nice reputation..flexibility is what we all need..and your teacher is quite right about relaxing the embouchure..I still consciously relax mine when climbing up through the scale especially in the 3rd octave and by dropping your jaw you will increase the air chamber and in turn the sound will fill out if there is any justice..but relaxing the embouchure is a real must, so fight on.

 

I do sympathise about your new cat, one of my dogs hates the Oboe and howls like the devil has him in his fiery grasp and has to be sent next door..don't let the cat put you off playing for too long..

 

Andrew

 


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#17 A.U.K

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 16:17

We havent heard from Katica for a while.  Lovely oboe player whom I have had the privilege to accompany.

  Aww yes she was a lovely lady..I am sure she still is and I hope still playing..I think she lives in Costa Rica which would explain why she may not be able to post as often as she used to..hopefully she will emerge and pop in and say hello.


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#18 fsharpminor

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Posted 18 April 2017 - 17:41

 

We havent heard from Katica for a while.  Lovely oboe player whom I have had the privilege to accompany.

  Aww yes she was a lovely lady..I am sure she still is and I hope still playing..I think she lives in Costa Rica which would explain why she may not be able to post as often as she used to..hopefully she will emerge and pop in and say hello.

 

She came to one of Sbhoa's Stalybridge events when I accompanied her playing Marcello (C Minor I think, 1st movement). She was in UK for a few months at the time.


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#19 A.U.K

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 18:29

It seems many of the old faces and voices have gone..interestingly this thread is marked "Hot" which slightly tickles me...I would hope we can get it even Hotter..

 

I have noticed how much slower the whole forum has become, it used to be a hive of industry, maybe the new layout put some people off..We used to have pages of threads but are now very much reduced which means a lot of old Archive has gone..that's a shame.

 

Not a very interesting Oboe day for me, just trying to establish which reeds are useable for my lesson and what they heck I need to play..I haven't been very good this past ten days, I've been away and that always throws a spanner in the works, my lip goes, my fingers feel alien and my stamina seems to vanish..Oh well nowt to be done about it now, lesson tomorrow so I will go and see what happens

 

Hope everyone has had a good day

 

Andrew


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#20 flobiano

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 10:05

Hi Andrew,

I still lurk occasionally but, like Roseau, life has been a bit complicated so haven't really had time to post.  I've found forums in general are much quieter than they used to be - most of the forums I used to post on have actually closed down now from lack of activity so it is good that this one is still going.

 

I am still playing the oboe in my local orchestra (now on the committee as well), a quintet, occasionally for another local orchestra when they need an extra player and various other things that come in.

 

This is what I have coming up playing wise -

Saturday - my quintet is playing as a quartet as flautist otherwise engaged, 3 Lute songs, one of them will require Cor.

week on Sunday - I've been invited to support a local string day. They are doing 2 Haydn Symphonies, in addition to all the strings they needed 2 oboes and 2 French horns so I'll be going to play 1st oboe. I did one earlier in the year and it was lots of fun.

4 weeks time - orchestra concert. As the strings are doing a Bach Violin concerto we have been given a wind piece to do - Old Wine in New bottles by Gordon Jacob.  :-)

6 weeks time - I've been asked to play the cor part for Scheherazade for concert at end of local music course.  The 2nd oboist isn't able to play cor for the moment. I'll do some doubling on the 2nd oboe part in the loud bits too.

8 weeks time - playing 4th oboe/CA for Mahler 2 for another local orchestra.

Also 8 weeks time - quintet will be playing "Happy Handel" arrangement of some movements of Handel's flute sonatas for wind quintet.

 

Still having lessons and thinking about putting together a program for ARSM...something to work towards maybe.

 

All the above probably explains why I haven't really had much time to post - but I will try to be more active!

Not done any reed making for nearly 4 years.  Will hopefully pick it up again soon!

 

Hope you have a good day! :-)


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#21 dumdidum

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 10:23

Nice to hear form you Flobiano - you sound very busy! Interested to hear you haven't been making your own reeds - I always thought once you started you didn't go back to shop bought ones!

 

Well Mr Cat doesn't seem too bothered about the oboe so back practising. Had an enjoyable lesson yesterday - scales back on the agenda after deciding to go for Grade 6 later this year ... I have the joy of melodic minors to conquer. Actually felt in quite good shape/sound so maybe the enforced break has helped!


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#22 flobiano

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 10:52

Hi dumdidum

I should probably have explained better.  I had previously started to learn to make reeds but never managed to get as far as playing on my own reeds in public - though I managed a couple which were good enough for practice sessions.  I had quite a few discussions on here about them when I was trying to learn which is why I mentioned it.

 

My teacher makes my reeds so I don't really class them as "shop bought", I really should learn to make them before she decides to retire though!

 

Good luck with Grade 6 prep.  personally I quite like melodic minors....and they do fall under the fingers quite well if you've got your majors sussed as it should all be stuff you've played before.


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#23 dumdidum

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 10:57

yes I like the minor sound on the way up and the major on the way down ....


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#24 Wai Kit Leung

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 11:37

I am still around. Not visiting the forum as much as before after the arrival of my son though.

Regarding reeds, I have stop making them 15 years ago. In my humble opinion, it is better to spend the time practising than making reeds. The end result could be that your embouchure control is so good that you can play on any reeds, good or bad, and regardless of styles. I told my students if they don't have time to practise for more than an hour a day, they shouldn't sacrifice their practising time for reed making.
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#25 fsharpminor

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 15:57

Hi dumdidum

I should probably have explained better.  I had previously started to learn to make reeds but never managed to get as far as playing on my own reeds in public - though I managed a couple which were good enough for practice sessions.  I had quite a few discussions on here about them when I was trying to learn which is why I mentioned it.

 

My teacher makes my reeds so I don't really class them as "shop bought", I really should learn to make them before she decides to retire though!

 

Good luck with Grade 6 prep.  personally I quite like melodic minors....and they do fall under the fingers quite well if you've got your majors sussed as it should all be stuff you've played before.

Hi Flobiano, hope you are still dabbling on the organ too !


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#26 flobiano

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Posted 22 April 2017 - 13:25

 

 

Hi Flobiano, hope you are still dabbling on the organ too !

 

Not really I'm afraid...I've barely managed to play the piano recently.  Life has been a bit too chaotic.  Still playing at church a couple of times a quarter but that's about it.  Hopefully will get back to it at some point.


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#27 A.U.K

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Posted 23 April 2017 - 13:44

Hi Andrew,

I still lurk occasionally but, like Roseau, life has been a bit complicated so haven't really had time to post.  I've found forums in general are much quieter than they used to be - most of the forums I used to post on have actually closed down now from lack of activity so it is good that this one is still going.

 

I am still playing the oboe in my local orchestra (now on the committee as well), a quintet, occasionally for another local orchestra when they need an extra player and various other things that come in.

 

This is what I have coming up playing wise -

Saturday - my quintet is playing as a quartet as flautist otherwise engaged, 3 Lute songs, one of them will require Cor.

week on Sunday - I've been invited to support a local string day. They are doing 2 Haydn Symphonies, in addition to all the strings they needed 2 oboes and 2 French horns so I'll be going to play 1st oboe. I did one earlier in the year and it was lots of fun.

4 weeks time - orchestra concert. As the strings are doing a Bach Violin concerto we have been given a wind piece to do - Old Wine in New bottles by Gordon Jacob.  :-)

6 weeks time - I've been asked to play the cor part for Scheherazade for concert at end of local music course.  The 2nd oboist isn't able to play cor for the moment. I'll do some doubling on the 2nd oboe part in the loud bits too.

8 weeks time - playing 4th oboe/CA for Mahler 2 for another local orchestra.

Also 8 weeks time - quintet will be playing "Happy Handel" arrangement of some movements of Handel's flute sonatas for wind quintet.

 

Still having lessons and thinking about putting together a program for ARSM...something to work towards maybe.

 

All the above probably explains why I haven't really had much time to post - but I will try to be more active!

Not done any reed making for nearly 4 years.  Will hopefully pick it up again soon!

 

Hope you have a good day! :-)

  Hi Flobiano,

 

My goodness you are busy, you must be going through reeds "Wholesale" It seems you have a stack of very interesting music to play and are seemingly very much in demand..it all sounds fun and I am sure you are benefiting from the experience. The Mahler will be fun and Scheherazade is lovely..I'm quite envious.

 

I dropped my chair at the Orchestra due to family issues, I just couldn't focus or commit that I would not have to up sticks and run as my father was terribly ill and sadly passed away so there was no way I could just up and run so I felt it best to hand in my notice and leave..Also the orchestra in my opinion had become way too grand and was delving into the symphonic program on a level I didn't feel comfortable with..this happens a lot with Amateur groups who get too big for their boots program wise..it has in their case proved successful but it's a very fine line between puling it off and having a near disaster.That aside I am quite happy to be just working away at home and hopefully improving..I must say that I am being very lucky with reeds at the moment and they are all behaving nicely, either its the reeds or I have improved sufficiently to be able to make a better job of a dodgy one..

 

I am currently changing over from one Oboe to another and the keywork layout is slightly different so I am having to re educate my fingers a bit..at first I was almost beaten by it but it is improving and things are generally headed in the right direction which is great as the new Oboe is exceptional, a real gem..The tuning is vastly improved and the overall experience is a much happier one. I won't be selling my Loree though well not for awhile but I suspect in time it will come up for sale..I still have a fondness for it but it is not quite what I was after from a sound and tonal viewpoint. Practicing is a much more pleasurable than ever before so I am looking forward to some serious improvments..

 

So another successful morning and it's nice to see you about Flobiano

 

Have fun

 

Andrew


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#28 flobiano

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Posted 25 April 2017 - 11:07

Hi Andrew,

Sorry to hear about your father - and that you felt you had to resign from the Orchestra.  Though it can be no fun if you are not enjoying the repertoire they are playing.  I was fortunate that my orchestra kept my seat open for me when I took a break to look after my partner before he died.  I had a summer and autumn term off but then found it very helpful to go back - not least for being a night out of the house to see people without being expected to actually talk to them!

 

Congratulations on your new oboe - what make/ model have you bought?  I am sure a new oboe will help the incentive to practice. 

 

I had a good lesson last night - beginning to think about a potential programme for doing ARSM.  I've just ordered some new music - Hurd -  Concerto da Camera, Ranki - Don Quixote and Dulcinea and the Gregson Sonata.  I listened to the Hurd and Ranki on Youtube and they both seem nice. I'll let you know how I get on.

 

All the best


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#29 katica

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Posted 25 April 2017 - 17:58

Thank you fsharpminor for your totally undeserved kind words!!! Thank you AUK for a much-needed boost to the thread!! I have missed you too, roseau, flobiano, hardying. ..

I've been checking in very sporadically but life has got in the way, as for other people.

Got to rush right now (last minute practice before oboe lesson - ver naughty! :() but I PROMISE to come back on here within a couple of days, read the new posts properly and report in.
:)
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#30 fsharpminor

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Posted 25 April 2017 - 20:48

Thank you fsharpminor for your totally undeserved kind words!!! Thank you AUK for a much-needed boost to the thread!! I have missed you too, roseau, flobiano, hardying. ..

I've been checking in very sporadically but life has got in the way, as for other people.

Got to rush right now (last minute practice before oboe lesson - ver naughty! :() but I PROMISE to come back on here within a couple of days, read the new posts properly and report in.
:)

Good to hear from you !  :)


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