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Jean Moorehead Libs Hit The Books! Methodology Recommendations
for University Curricula: An Interview with Richard Burkart,
Keith Johnson, and Gordon Mathie (Dec95)
42 ITG Journal / December, 1995 1995 International Trumpet Guild
Hit The Books!
Methodology Recommendations
for University Curricula
An Interview with Richard Burkart, Keith Johnson, and Gordon Mathie
This article focuses on the implementation of
method books and etude material in both the under-
graduate and graduate curriculum. The subject is ap-
proached by problem rather than title, similar to the
rationale behind Gordon Mathies book, The Trumpet
Teachers Guide: A Problem-Based Bibliography of
Selected & Graded Etudes & Duets (PP Music: Port-
land, ME, 1993). Naturally, the level of talent you
are dealing with depends on the age of the students
and the type of musical institution at which you
teach. However, basic pedagogical problems are often
the same regardless of the above situation. It is with
this thought that I have posed ten questions to three
master teachers: Richard Burkart, Professor Emeri-
tus, Ohio State University; Keith Johnson, Regents
Professor and Coordinator of Brass Instruction, Uni-
versity of North Texas; and Gordon Mathie, Profes-
sor Emeritus, Crane School of Music.
JML: Do you have a group of books that you
use regularly with graduate and undergradu-
ate students?
KJ: Yes, I do for three reasons. First, there is a
certain pedagogical repertory that any trumpeter should
know and be able to play in order to be generally well
prepared. Second, I do not always know what my stu-
dents may or may not have covered with previous
teachers, so I like to be sure they are familiar with
those materials I consider essential. Third, I have cer-
tain very basic ideas about good trumpet playing, and I
believe I can convey these ideas more efficiently by
using materials with which I am well acquainted.
I have developed a rather extensive curriculum
(which I would be happy to send to interested ITG
members) for my students at North Texas that goes far
beyond these basic methods, but the essential methods
are all well known and include Stamp, Clarke Techni-
cal Studies, Getchell, Arban, Irons, Williams Tech-
nique Preservation, Sachse, Bordogni, and Charlier.
In addition, of course, I insist my students know at
the very least the basic solo and orchestral repertory.
GM: These are the method or etude books I always
have on my music stand, for long range work and
browsing (for me) and to approach on a play through
basis or as a source of individual problem solving (for
students): the Arban Complete Method and the
Schlossberg Daily Drills and Techniques. My use of
the Arban book is mostly for basic techniques (tongu-
ing, slurring, scales, etc.), the songs in The Art of Phras-
ing and, of course, the Characteristic Studies. I use the
songs for musicianship and transposition study. The
Schlossberg book, although one of our most basic re-
sources, is a logistical nightmare. I give students a
reordering and relabeling sheet, which they transfer
to their own book. The publishers of the Schlossberg
were magnificently uninterested in my suggestions, so
if any teacher is interested I would be glad to send
them a copy. The other book on my music stand is the
Allan Vizzutti Method. I use this book constantly.
I think every young student should have a solid
background in various styles, with a chance to con-
sider basic chord progressions in nontechnical etudes.
Many good books serve this purpose, but my favor-
ites are the Robert Getchell Second Book of Practical
Studies and Everett Gatess Odd Meter Etudes. Al-
though the Getchell book is organized by rhythmic
patterns, I prefer going through the book in numeri-
cal order (one of the very few books I use in this
manner), discussing the phrasing problems encoun-
tered, with emphasis upon the harmonic progres-
sions. I also use the Getchell books as an introduction
to transposition. I use the Gates book as an introduc-
tion to contemporary idioms, and I find it a great
reference book for easier contemporary rhythms and
tonalities. The Lacour 100 Dechiffrages Manuscripts
(two books) contain very short etudes with a helpful
index to the devices used, and is a very painless way to
get very young students into the twentieth century.
RB: I regularly use the Arban, Schlossberg, Colin
Lip Flexibilities; various Concone and Bordogni
vocalise transcriptions, J. Ed. Arnold books, 99 Se-
lected Studies Bks. 1 and 2, and Masterworks for the
Trumpet, Davidson Trumpet Techniques, Besancon
15 Etudes Eclectiques, Brandt/Vacchiano 34 Studies
and 24 Last Studies, Harbison Technical Studies,
Laurent Etudes Practiques Bk. 1, Plog 16 Contempo-
rary Etudes, Pietzsch 22 Virtuosity Studies, E.F.
Goldman Practical Studies, Clarke Characteristic
December, 1995 / ITG Journal 43 1995 International Trumpet Guild
Studies, Bousquet 36 Studies, Vannetelbosch 20 Me-
lodic and Technical Etudes, plus various orchestral
excerpt literature and orchestral trumpet parts with
my undergraduate students.
With my graduate students I use much of the
above literature and add to that particularly the
Charlier, Bitsch, Chaynes, Reynolds, Petit, Sachse,
Longinotti Studies in Classical and Modern Style,
Sabarich Dix Etudes, Bodet 16 Etudes de Virtuosite
After Bach, Arban/Maire Methode, Vol. 3; Broiles
Transposition for Orchestral Trumpet and Trumpet
Baroque, Books 1 and 2; and Dubois 12 Etudes, along
with more orchestral trumpet excerpts.
JML: What about warm-up and scale books?
RB: In addition to the warm-up and scale books
listed above, I supply my students with a copy of a
condensed routine of exercises in manuscript that I
have culled from various sources.
KJ: For warm-ups I usually use the Stamp and
those warm-ups that Vincent Cichowicz developed. I
prefer these to extended, solitary long tones because
they are quite musical and implicitly suggest the
importance of phrasing and connection rather than
isolated pitches.
For scale work I find the Arban and Ernest Williamss
Secret of Technique Preservation to be useful. It is vital
to stress to the student the importance of playing scales
in the most musical ways possible! Good sound, smooth,
flowing connections, appropriate and consistent articu-
lation rather than mindless, unmusical technical drills.
The reason many players find playing scales to be
boring is because those players practice scales in a
boring fashion. Scales are simply prescribed musical
lines in various keys. To practice them successfully is
to practice them musically.
GM: Most of what I do with students and the
warm-up is out of the Schlossberg, in some form or
other. Warm-up is such an individual thing that I
simply give students an outline of what I do and
encourage them to adapt it for their own needs. If
there is a problem, I have the student warm up as I
listen and make suggestions. Although I require my
students to play scales, arpeggios, etc., from memory,
everyone needs a reference book of scales and I rec-
ommend that they own the Ernest Williams Method
of Scales as a reference and the James Stamp Warm
Ups + Studies as a source of approaching scales in a
different fashion. The Vizzutti books also are useful
for scale and arpeggio work.
JML: It seems that many students have
trouble in their formative years with flexibil-
ity. What methods have you had success with
for flexibility development?
RB: Its not so much the methods as it is the
manner in which one produces the sound that affects
flexibility development. Numerous excellent flexibil-
ity exercise materials exist by Charles Colin,
Schlossberg, Walter Smith, Earl Irons, just to name
a few, not to mention the many editions of vocalises
and other legato studies available. Flexibility im-
plies the ability to play lip slurs efficiently, as well
as the ability to play around the full range of the
instrument with facility whether slurring or tongu-
ing. This ability involves control of embouchure move-
ment and air velocity. It involves developing minimal
embouchure movement controlled by firm corner
muscles of the lips and preferably a flat, pointed
chin, and it involves a controlled intensity of continu-
ous lip vibration generated by constant air speed.
KJ: I define flexibility as the ability to move effi-
ciently from one note to another, either slurred or
tongued. Perhaps flexibility is more commonly thought
of as just lip slurs. In any event, certain fundamental
skills are the same. They are primarily two: first to
produce a full, beautiful sound and second, to connect
smoothly from note to note. I believe this is best
accomplished by an emphasis on full, free-flowing air
and musical lines. Much too much is made of speed.
Speed should be the last factor added to the mix. I
encourage my students to repeatedly play the line or
exercise with as beautiful a sound as possible, always
listening for the quality of the sound and the quality
of the connections. If done well coordination inevita-
bly develops and greater speed can be achieved.
I am a rather aggressive advocate of playing the
mouthpiece, and certainly no aspect of trumpet play-
ing can benefit more from mouthpiece playing than
flexibility since the mouthpiece played alone reveals
so much about sound (air) and connections.
JML: How do you work to increase a students
RB: As a student I came upon a booklet entitled Lip
Science by DeLamarter. The booklet espoused the de-
velopment of controlled vibration of the lips by placing
the index finger above the upper lip and the thumb
below the lower lip while buzzing the lips in the formed
position of the embouchure. Though he uses the mouth-
piece instead of the fingers to practice buzzing, the
concepts of James Stamps teaching are much the same.
I think of the lips as the generator, the mouthpiece as
the alternator, and the instrument as the machine all
set in motion by the air, which is the current.
The principal of lip flexibility is simple. The lips
must vibrate continually from one pitch to another
whether in lip slurs or in legato slurs involving chang-
ing fingerings. In other words, blow through the note
changes. Lip slurring is nothing more than glissing
quickly from one pitch to another on the mouthpiece.
A favorite demonstration of mine is to loosen the
mouthpiece in the leadpipe slightly so that the in-
strument can be moved away from it while playing.
Hold the mouthpiece to the lips with the right hand
44 ITG Journal / December, 1995 1995 International Trumpet Guild
while playing lip slurs. Gradually move the trumpet
away while revealing more of the buzz of the mouth-
piece, and still click from one harmonic to the other.
As the trumpet is further slowly removed, the click
between harmonics converts to a glissando on the
mouthpiece. Reversing the procedure while continu-
ing to gliss on the mouthpiece begins to affect the
click of the lip slur again.
KJ: Specifically, in the case of lip slurs, I have
students play in a comfortable middle range at first. A
book of exercises I like for this is Embouchure Builder
by Lowell Little. The studies are mostly simple and
excellent, although the instructional text that accom-
panies the studies is absolutely dreadful. As students
progress we move on to the Irons and Colin books on
slurring. I also consider such works as the third, sev-
enth and eighth groups in Clarkes Technical Studies
to be very helpful. I cannot overemphasize, however,
the importance of slow, beautiful playing in all stages
of development, allowing speed to come gradually and
without causing any compromise in other qualities.
GM: For flexibility and range I encourage stu-
dents to not only learn the basic patterns but also to
experiment with their own patterns. As a source of
reference I recommend they use Charles Colins Ad-
vanced Lip Flexibilities. The Vizzutti books offer some
new and refreshing approaches to flexibility. In teach-
ing flexibility I work with students on maintaining a
steady stream of air, with lots of emphasis on syl-
lables. I also encourage students to anticipate the
surge of air for ascending intervals, so that the inter-
val changes are preceded by air and embouchure
movement. I try to get students to remember that if
they try to move everything (air, tongue, embou-
chure) at the exact point of an interval change, they
will always be late. (I hope this makes some sense; it
is difficult to verbalize this anticipating of slurs
without actual demonstration.)
JML: What methods do you use to develop
articulation skills?
RB: Many young players have marching band
and stage band tonguing techniques short notes,
tongue-cut-offs, and essentially a closed glottis. To
reverse this I have students work a great deal on
sostenuto and legato articulation using d strokes
and t strokes with no space between notes, that is,
attached rather than detached, with a sustained air
flow. Beginning Arban scale and arpeggio exercises
are excellent to start with, as well as simple re-
peated note exercises. Emphasis is placed upon con-
tinued air flow, stressing that for most tonguing the
air flow is identical to slurring except that the tongue
is articulating d or t on the flow. I stress that
very legato and staccato styles are on opposite ends
of the d and t middle ground articulation and
there are important considerations to be dealt with
in developing both efficiently. Without going into
great detail about staccato tonguing I refer the
reader to the chapter in Fay Hansons book Brass
Playing dealing with the larynx. The same attached
(connected) style of articulation should be applied to
multiple tonguing, that is using d and g for smooth-
ness and t and k for more staccato-like effect. An-
other suggestion proven successful in many cases is
lowering the stroke of the tongue so that the tip is
actually brushing the back of the bottom teeth simi-
lar to pronouncing the word the but instead articulat-
ing t or d in that position.
KJ: Allow me to say at the outset that I believe
those qualities which are most fundamental to devel-
oping good articulation are a good concept of sound
(which includes articulation) and good air. Remem-
ber that the tongue articulates the sound (air) and
the quality of the articulation will not be any better
than the quality of the sound (air) itself. As a muscle,
the tongue reacts sympathetically to other muscles,
and if the air is relaxed and free flowing the tongue
will operate in a more relaxed and responsive way.
Most problems that people might call poor articula-
tion are, in my experience, really an inevitable re-
sponse to tight, shallow air.
As to specific method books, I use Arban, Shuebruk,
Brandt, and a few others. For multiple tonguing I
particularly like the last three pages in Bodets La
Semaine du Virtuose. I must say, however, that the
particular method book is of slight importance com-
pared to the players concept of sound/articulation and
the quality of production. I tell my students to remem-
ber that articulation is for us what diction is for the
singer. It is the consonant that defines and gives char-
acter to the vowel. I strongly urge my students to listen
to lots of fine singers. I have learned far more about
articulation/diction from listening to the recordings of
such great artists as Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and
Jussi Bjoerling than from any trumpet player.
GM: Good articulation should be an important
consideration in all the students playing, but for
particular emphasis on styles of articulation I use
the Arban Characteristic Studies and page 125 of the
Arban. The students daily workbook in this area
could be the Shuebruk Graded Tongue Trainers (three
books). In all their routines I encourage students to
alternate slur and tongue, so that their sound is
uniform, despite articulation.
JML: What about transposition etudes or
RB: I use Cafferelli 100 Melodious Studies, Sache
100 Etudes, vocalises, orchestral trumpet excerpts
and complete parts, along with anything else the
student can get through.
KJ: Everything I use is very standard: Bordogni,
Brandt, Williams, etc. For beginners I use the won-
December, 1995 / ITG Journal 45 1995 International Trumpet Guild
derful First Book of Practical Studies by Robert
Getchell, and I also like to use the Rochut trombone
etudes (three volumes of vocalises by Bordogni), which
require reading bass clef. (I use these more because
they are wonderful melodic etudes than because I
attach any great importance to reading bass clef.)
They also make wonderful studies for solfege and
mouthpiece practice.
GM: My approach to transposition is to teach it as
early as possible (playing well known tunes by ear in
lots of keys is a form of transposition) and emphasize
it constantly (refer to my earlier statements about
Arban and Getchell). If I am teaching a student who
will become an orchestral player or a high school
band/orchestra director then a systematic approach
to transposition is vital. (You may wonder about the
grouping of an orchestral trumpet player and a high
school band/orchestra director, but think about it.) In
these cases I use the Ernest Williams Method of Trans-
position as a reference book, followed by the Bordogni
Vocalises and the Caffarelli 100 Melodious Studies. I
dont use orchestra excerpts books unless the student
is preparing for an orchestral audition; I prefer to use
actual orchestral parts, asking the student to first hear
a recording of the piece, with part in hand, then prac-
tice the part. In the case of the student who will be-
come an orchestral player, I think the Rob Roy
McGregor books, A Preparation for Trumpet Orches-
tral Literature, are terrific. In studying orchestral play-
ing, Herings 23 Orchestra Etudes is very valuable,
though it does not contain transposition as such.
JML: Do you use any methods that focus
strictly on rhythmic development?
RB: My favorites are Pasquale Bona Rhythmical
Articulation and Dufresne-Voisin Develope Sight
KJ: Generally no, with the occasional exceptions
of the Odd Meter Etudes by Gates and Develope Sight
Reading by Roger Voisin. Rhythmic development
should be a part of every piece being played.
GM: Not usually. I teach rhythmic concepts
through duets, which are a part of every lesson I give.
If I find a rhythmic problem, we apply that rhythm to
scales and I look for duets that deal with that par-
ticular rhythm. For students with rhythm and/or
sight-reading problems, I tape one part of duet collec-
tions for the student to play with at home.
JML: What do you recommend for range ex-
tension development?
RB: I use James Stamp drills, Colin Lip Flexibilities,
long tone drills, air flow studies, and scales.
KJ: I would be less than truthful if I did not tell
you that I recommend a volume I wrote called Devel-
oping the Upper Register. I also like to use Clarkes
Technical Studies, simply extending the exercises to
ranges higher than what are printed.
It is important to emphasize, however, that no
method book will truly help a player develop range
unless the players approach is good. Playing well in
the upper register depends upon developing a beauti-
ful, efficient, and musical approach to the middle
register and gradually, I repeat, gradually extending
it. No method book, mouthpiece, or gimmick can com-
pensate for poor production. The important thing is
to impose the same musical standards on ones play-
ing in all registers. (Poor playing requires hard physi-
cal effort. Good, beautiful playing is much easier.)
GM: Range is a part of every scale and every
arpeggio. We do not acquire good upper register by
playing high notes, just as a runner does not learn to
run the mile by starting out at the distance. If a G
above the staff is not played with ease and a good
sound there is no point in trying to get to G-sharp,
much less high C. I recommend that students prac-
tice chromatic scales (two octaves if possible) every
day, going only as high as can be played with a good
sound. The student is encouraged not to think about
how high he or she can play but how high he or she
can play well. As students play notes in the upper
register (whatever that might be for the individual
student) I try to get them to match the sound and
feeling they have playing the pitch an octave lower.
In other words, to paraphrase Stamp, as you go up
think and stay down. As a player of chromatic scales
every day of my life I feel that when I add a half-step
to my upper register correctly through chromatic
scales that is a note that has been added to my
permanent upper range, not just for that day.
JML: Do you use any particular method of
piccolo trumpet technique?
RB: The Mel Broiles books are nice, Trumpet Ba-
roque, Books 1 and 2. I also use Clarke Technical
Studies, baroque sonatas, concertos, trumpet tunes
and melodies, baroque orchestral literature, and lim-
ited-range vocalises.
KJ: Not really, although I am working on an intro-
ductory method for piccolo trumpet playing, which I
hope will be published within the next year or so. At
present I simply have my students play basic mate-
rial (Clarke, Getchell) to become familiar with the
vicissitudes of the instrument, and then we begin
playing easy solos and progress from there.
GM: At an ITG master class given by Roger Voisin,
I was struck by the strong message he gave to a
student playing the piccolo much too early in her
career: you must pay your dues on the B-flat trumpet
before playing the piccolo. I am very concerned about
the number of young students being seduced by the
glamour and excitement of the piccolo and interrupt-
ing (not forever, I hope) their normal stages of devel-
opment on the B-flat. Students starting to learn the
piccolo should go through a very careful and gradual
46 ITG Journal / December, 1995 1995 International Trumpet Guild
process of learning to control an entirely new ap-
proach to air on the piccolo. I recommend a lot of
slurred scales, chromatic and diatonic, in the middle
and low registers before playing in the upper regis-
ter. I am very frightened by students starting to
learn the piccolo by learning the Torelli Concerto. In
the words of one of my first teachers, we must crawl
before we walk and walk before we run.
JML: What do you use for advanced etude
RB: I use the following books for advanced etude
studies: Charlier, Chavanne 25 Virtuosity Studies,
Petit Grande Etudes, Bitsch, Chaynes, Verne Reynolds
48 Etudes, Walter Smith Top Tones, Aaron Harris
Advanced Studies, Dubois 12 Etudes, Longinotti Stud-
ies in Classical and Modern Style, Sabarich Dix
Etudes, Bodet 16 Etudes de Virtuosite after Bach,
Arban/Maire Method, Vol. 3, Broiles Transposition
for Orchestral Trumpet.
KJ: I am not entirely certain how you would de-
fine advanced material, but I look for etudes that are
both demanding and musically interesting and re-
warding. I find people practice more and better if the
material is musically satisfying.
My favorite books are the studies based on the
music of J.S. Bach by Bodet and Gisondi, Charlier,
Sabarichs Dix Etudes, the etudes of Bitsch, and the
Top Tones of Walter Smith. I am amazed at how
much I still enjoy these books after more than three
decades of playing and teaching them.
GM: I use the following books among many others:
Longinotti Studies in Classical and Modern Style for
twelve-tone and cadenza-style etudes, Decker Inter-
mediate Serial Studies for obvious reasons, Hering
Etudes in All Keys for keeping in touch with all to-
nalities, Nagel Studies in Contemporary Music for
playable contemporary etudes and a helpful index of
devices and notation, Reynolds 48 Etudes for endur-
ance and contemporary forms. My French Progres-
sion consists of the Etudes for Modern Style in part
III of the Arban-Maire, Charlier 36 Etudes Transcen-
dantes (have the student buy the David Baldwin
recordings), and the Bitsch 20 Etudes.
Arban, Complete Conservatory Method (Fischer)
Arban/Maire, Method Vol. 1,2,3 (Leduc)
Arnold, 99 Selected Studies, 2 Bks
(Ashley Publications)
Besancon, 15 Etudes Eclectiques (Editions Billaudot)
Bitsch, 20 Etudes (Leduc)
Bodet, 16 Etudes de Virtuosite dApres J.S. Bach
Bodet, La Semaine du Virtuose (Leduc)
Bona, Rhythmical Articulation (Fischer)
Bordogni, 24 Vocalises (Leduc)
Bousquet, 36 Celebrated Studies (Fischer)
Brandt, 34 Orchestral Studies (International)
Brandt/Vacchiano, 24 Last Studies (Hal Leonard)
Brandt/Vacchiano, 34 Studies (Hal Leonard)
Broiles, Transposition for Orchestral Trumpet
(McGinnis & Marks)
Broiles, Trumpet Baroque Bk 1 & 2 (Queen)
Caffarelli, 100 Melodious Studies (Ricordi)
Charlier, 36 Etudes Transcendantes (Leduc)
Chavanne, 25 Characteristic Etudes (Leduc)
Chaynes, 15 Etudes (Leduc)
Clarke, Characteristic Studies (Fischer)
Clarke, Technical Studies (Fischer)
Colin, Advanced Lip Flexibilities (Colin)
Davidson, Trumpet Techniques (Dav)
Decker, Intermediate Serial Studies (Kendor)
DeLamarter, Lip Science (publisher unknown)
Dubois, 12 Etudes (Leduc)
Dufresne/Voisin, Develop Sight Reading (Colin)
Gates, Odd Meter Etudes (Fox)
Getchell, First & Second Book of Practical Studies
Goldman, Practical Studies (Fischer)
Harris, Advanced Studies (Colin)
Hering, 23 Orchestral Etudes (Fischer)
Hering, Etudes in All Keys (Fischer)
Harbison, Technical Studies (Aebersold)
Irons, 27 Groups of Exercises (Southern)
Johnson, Developing the Upper Register (Gore)
Lacour, 100 Dechiffrages Manuscript (2 bks.) (Bill)
Laurent, Etudes Practiques Vol. 1 & 2 (Leduc)
Little, Embouchure Builder (Pro Art Publications)
Longinotti, Studies in Classical and Modern Style
McGregor, Audition and Performance Preparation
for Trumpet Orchestra Literature (Balquhidder)
Nagel, Trumpet Studies in Contemporary Music
Petit, 15 Etudes (Leduc)
Petit, Grande Etudes (Leduc)
Pietzsch, 22 Virtuosity Studies (Southern)
Plog, 16 Contemporary Studies (Tromba)
Reynolds, 48 Etudes (Schirmer)
Rochut, Vocalises for Trombone (Fetter)
Sabarich, Dix Etudes (Selmer)
Sachse, 100 Etudes (International)
Schlossberg, Daily Drills and Technical Studies
Shuebruk, Graded Tongue Trainers (3 Bks.) (Fischer)
Smith, Top Tones (Fischer)
Stamp, Warmup Plus Studies (BIM)
Vannetelbosch, 20 Melodic & Technical Etudes (Leduc)
Williams, Method for Transposition (Colin)
Williams, Method of Scales (Colin)
Williams, Secret of Technique Preservation (Colin)