Learn to Play the Greatest Wind Instrument!

Are you a beginner?

I have started players of all ages. Correct techniques at the beginning will result in pleasing results and confidence. Learn how to develop a great sound as well as read music. I can help with the selection of an instrument. Many former students have careers as players and educators. I have worked with elementary and high school students at the National Music Camp of Canada every summer since 1987.

Experienced player?

I can help correct counterproductive habits and improve sound and technique. Learn advanced techniques including vibrato, overtones, altissimo, circular breathing and more. I teach on two university music faculties and can prepare you for auditions. Current students include music teachers and professionals in other areas. Play with confidence and enjoyment any music you wish to play.

  • My students play in school and community bands.
  • Prepare for Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM) exams and Kiwanis competitions.
  • Music written for and recorded by me is on the RCM exam list.

Teaching Philosophy

To develop a flexible and controllable embouchure one should first produce a consistent and generic tone with an efficient mouthpiece/reed setup.

An efficient setup should allow the production of tone at ppp with no wasted air and the resulting hissing or air noise.

All other tonal colour options that are accessed by embouchure and breath can then be added to the palette. The player must always be able to return to the generic tone.

I spend time playing E2 and regulate embouchure tension and cushion as well as air support and flow; listening and modifying on long tones as well as through the dynamic range from ppp to fff and back.

Four priorities

  1. Tone; do not play with sound that is poor or inappropriate.
  2. Rhythm; produce the sound at the right time – rhythm is determined by when a sound starts.
  3. Notes; produce the correct pitch – not only must a ‘pitch’ be correct (the right note) but it must be intonated correctly.
  4. Articulation; start, connect and finish the sounds as required – There are many ways to start and finish a tone, according to the way it is used in the music. The better players of any instrument have the ability to utilize most of the possible options for that instrument.