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Advice to new musicians - choose less popular instruments!

(15 Posts)
Helenluvsrob Sat 05-Sep-15 21:31:21

Or possibly a less able cohort at school!

Dd2 year 12. Comfortable grade 7 clarinet with merit working towards grade 8 ( spring? Depending on A levels) is stuck in school concert band not symphony orchestra as there are 3 year 13 clarinettists of a goid standard. She's very pissed off haging been where she is for a few years !

DS ( French horn ) had a much easier time getting to " play with the big boys" in multiple orchestras / bands/ ensembles !

winchester1 Sat 05-Sep-15 21:49:16

It why I switched to baritone sax and tuba - could yours switch to something else?

Wafflenose Sat 05-Sep-15 21:55:08

Yep, agree it is good advice, except that some instruments are less popular for good reason... they are huge and expensive. When DD1 demanded to learn the flute 3 years ago (and wouldn't stop going on about it until she got one), my first thought was, "Please don't do that! You'll never get selected for anything!"

I know there are a fair few cellists around, but DD2 is the only one at her primary school, and there was only one other playing in the concert they were involved in at the secondary school they will go to.

MrsLeighHalfpenny Sat 05-Sep-15 21:57:20

Has she thought about bass clarinet, or one of the less popular saxophones as an alternative? Easy to pick up if you play clarinet.

raspberryrippleicecream Sat 05-Sep-15 22:21:25

DS2 went straight into orchestra and brass group last year in Y7, because they needed a trombone. If there had been older trombones available they would have been given the opportunity first.

DD certainly went up to Senior Band faster on bari sax too.

But cohorts definitely make a difference too, there is quite a gap in clarinets for instance at present in school.

Helenluvsrob Sun 06-Sep-15 13:23:05

Fortunately shes not that bothered. It's her 3rd ( or 4th!) instrument . She would consider recorder or voice her 1st study and plays piano too. She is going to borrow a sax to see if she likes that as her aunt and uncle have offered to buy one if she does smile

She's plenty busy now bring deputy head chorister !

Helenluvsrob Sun 06-Sep-15 13:23:58

Raspberry I'd love to see her try Bari sax. She's only a dot, it would be so funny!

clary Sun 06-Sep-15 13:25:55

Yes I have always said this, play oboe as you'll always get a gig!

They cost ££££ tho as do the reeds so maybe that's why so few people play them.

raspberryrippleicecream Sun 06-Sep-15 21:45:20

DD is tall now at 15, but started in Y7, it was nearly as big as her! I did make sure we got a good shoulder harness.

The other school bari player was still a dot in Y13. It was funny at sax group seeing these huge lads with their altos and these 2 girls with their baris.

Well done to DD to be deputy head chorister by the way.

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 07-Sep-15 08:36:57

It varies from school to school though there are very few clarinet players at DD's school and mostly sax players as the teacher is really passionate about sax and very dogmatic about clarinet. (DD now learns out of school). So she is much in demand, but the school has had to create a huge range of jazz bands to accommodate the people playing every type of sax including the bass.
There are twice as many Oboe players as clarinet!
I think the most important thing is that they love their instrument.

LooseAtTheSeams Mon 07-Sep-15 08:48:41

Amused by reference to French horns in OP. Our borough music service used to do a series of instrumental group lessons for endangered instruments. The French horn was one of them. Only thing is, all the kids who took part fell in love with the instrument and carried on. As a result the junior orchestra must have more French horn players than anything else!

CheekyMaleekey Mon 07-Sep-15 08:51:00

Violin - every orchestra needs squillions of them. Easy, good choice.

dodobookends Mon 07-Sep-15 21:08:45

I got chatting to someone once whose dd played the bassoon and was in high demand.

Mistigri Tue 08-Sep-15 07:30:01

Doesn't this depend what your child wants to get out of music?

DD plays popular instruments, but because she has a decent level on several of them it's always easy for her to slot into jazz or contemporary music groups.

Helenluvsrob Tue 08-Sep-15 16:32:48

Agree misti but it's a reasonable assumption that if you taking grade 7 this year at age 16 you might be allowed to " play with the big kids" . I guess we are just lucky that the quality of music at school is so good!

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