After lots of troubleshooting and frustration, I think that I’ve finally gotten my wind production and support under control. I just spent a few evenings on my bed and practicing long tones as what I call breathing tones, just allowing the air to free-flow. It felt different, and I applied it to my music, and I finally feel as though I’m getting my air forward toward the reed and focused, supporting it fully with my diaphragm. It’s been a quite difficult process to figure it all out.
I’ve also begun to up my practice game. I developed a table, which I might turn into a spreadsheet, to track my daily practice routines. After lessons each Friday, I modify it to reflect the coming week’s focus – for example this week with concentrate on Eb and Ab Major scales. And I share it with my teacher as a bit of positive reinforcement and accountability. It’s paid off in that my practicing the “Wooden Shoe Dance” has been productive last week, and I may play it this Thursday at an adult recital and gathering of CCM Prep, my school.
I also got the news this week that I’ve been selected to be a volunteer for the International Double Reed Society’s Annual Conference in June. Held this year at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin, this will be the first IDRS event that I attend. I’m excited to be going, and hope to meet many new oboists and others. I also hope to attend a number of recitals and master classes, and to also get some solid practice time away from distractions of home.