• Uhl Boot Camp

    It’s been exactly one year since I launched my first boot camp on Jenny Clarinet! After the success of my Baermann Boot Camp from last October, I made my Kroepsch Boot Camp this past summer, and I even created a year-long boot camp for all you hard-core clarinetists out there! This time around, we’ll be tackling the notoriously difficult 48 Studies by Alfred Uhl. Treacherously technical and tonically tedious, these studies will be completed over the course of two months, focusing on one etude a day. I’ve never worked on the Uhl studies before, and a lot of my readers told me that they were planning to start working on them, so it looks…

  • International Day of Baermann

    📣Calling all clarinetists!📣 Last October, I created the Baermann Boot Camp, a practice plan which allows you to complete Carl Baermann’s eponymous scale book in one month. Clarinetists from around the world bonded over torturous key signatures and those dreadful octaves, and we emerged stronger and more technically proficient after an intensive month of scales. A lot of people probably thought I was crazy for cramming so much music into just 31 days. Well, I’m about to share an even more ambitious idea. I’d like to introduce the inaugural International Day of Baermann on October 24, in honor of the 208th birthday of our patron saint of scales. To celebrate, we’ll be…

  • The Beginner’s Guide to Orchestral Excerpts

    If you’re a musician, you’ve probably crossed paths with a few orchestral excerpts throughout the years. For such short snippets of symphonic literature, you’d think excerpts would be more manageable and less stressful…but unfortunately, that’s not the case. For the uninitiated, what are orchestral excerpts and what’s the big deal? I remember my first experience with an orchestral excerpt. I was asked to record an excerpt from the Brahms 3rd Symphony for an audition in early high school. Having been raised as your typical band geek, I was well-versed in the ways of marching band tunes, patriotic pep songs, and other school band toe-tappers, but I had had little knowledge…

  • Quick Fix Friday: No More Peekaboo Pinky

    Today’s Quick Fix Friday concerns a fingering issue I see all the time with beginner clarinet players – the dreaded peekaboo pinky! Most clarinet and band method books begin clarinet students with easy fingerings involving only the left hand, such as bottom line E or open G. This is practical for ease of technique and response, but many beginning clarinet students are often unsure what to do with the right hand. As a result, they develop bad finger and hand position habits as they devise ways to hold the clarinet more comfortably. The most common offense I see is holding the pinky (especially on the right hand) behind the clarinet,…