What is the course about?
This course covers the technique and musicianship relevant to the pieces taught. Associated techniques such as finger dexterity and tone projection are taught through the use of studies and exercises. It is an enjoyable course, and it must be emphasised that you are not expected to produce perfect results every week.
What will we cover?
- Two or three pieces are studied each term covering musical and technical aspects
- Weekly technical exercises are set to work on breathing, tone, articulation, intonation, or the altissimo register
- There is always discussion in class to which all the students contribute
- Ensemble pieces are studied, or presented as sight reading exercises.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Be more familiar with clarinet repertoire from musical and technical perspectives
- Play and perform with greater technical ability
- Demonstrate an awareness of elements of good performance (musicianship/sensitivity)
- Apply knowledge of new and existing techniques to clarinet playing
- Perform with confidence in solo and group playing
- Participate in a successful end-of-term performance.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
The repertoire is grade 5 standard and upwards, including Classical, Romantic and modern composers. We will work through appropriate studies and other technical work as well as duos/trios etc. to warm up. Students should have an appropriate level of technique before enrolling: a good basic sound, ability to play comfortably and fluently in the middle and chalumeau registers, with some experience of the altissimo register.
You will need to follow written and verbal instructions in English and engage in class discussions.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Learning as a group, but playing in various combinations from the entire group to individuals. The tutor tries to hear each student play on their own at least once each week.
You will need to practise regularly outside class time to make progress in this course, but it is not expected that you will produce perfect results in class every week.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Students need their own Bb clarinet and supply of reeds. Music will be supplied and recommended by the tutor, usually one or two printed books (approx. cost £10 each). You may also be able to borrow music from public libraries or download it from IMSLP.
Have you read our guide to local music shops and choosing instruments? Where to buy music and instruments This blog post lists some of our local music shops and gives specific advice on clarinets, pianos and more.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You may continue in ‘Clarinet: advanced workshop and ensembles’ for as many terms as you wish.
You may also be interested in Clarinet choir (occasional short course), City Lit wind ensemble,
Chamber music ensembles, or one of City Lit's many Musicianship or Music Appreciation courses.
General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details