Teaching the clarinet is hardly just a matter of air support instruction, or playing the right notes. Although these are important aspects of playing any wind instrument, we clarinet players are very fortunate to have one of the most extremely versatile instrument in the orchestra. Its vast register span as well as its almost unparalleled capacity to capture the lyricism of a singer, is truly unmatched. No wonder in its early days, it used to be referred to as “Vox Humana” - the Human Voice.
As a teacher I find it imperative and so very important that my students will “sing” through the clarinet and will depart from the mere notes on the page. As my great teacher and clarinetist, the late Avrahm Galper use to say to me in my lessons at his home in Toronto: ”You have to learn to wear your heart on your sleeve in every phrase and in any note you make…” (coupled with milk and cookies he used to give me after every lesson…) I feel it is one of my duties to pass this great tradition of clarinet playing and great humanity I was fortunate to learn from masters such as Abe Galper, James Campbell, Eli Eban, Yitzhak Katsap and many more to my own students. Keeping this wonderful tradition of clarinet and music through the generations.
For more information, please contact me at Michigan State University College of Music.