Sunday, July 31, 2011

"Opera on the Clarinet": A Prelude to ClarinetFest 2011

For those of you wanting to get a heads up on ClarinetFest 2011 activities, check out tonight's radio broadcast "Opera on the Clarinet" on The KCSN Opera House radio show at at 8pm Pacific Standard Time. Show host Bill Toutant and ClarinetFest 2011 artist director Julia Heinen will present interviews and performances of artists featured in various programs during the festival. The broadcast's line up includes Corrado Gioffredi, Robert Spring, the Vendome Quartet, and other artists.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

ClarinetFest 2011, Here We Come!

It's hard to believe that it's already almost time for another ClarinetFest, this time hosted by Julia Heinen and William Powell at California State University, Northridge.  Kellie and I have been reporting on ClarinetFests for four years now here at Clarinet Cache.  Our coverage began with the 2008 festival in Kansas City, and in 2009 we had a series of guest posts from those who attended the festival in Portugal.  Last year we reported from just down the road in Austin, TX, and this year I'll be on my own covering the festival in L.A. 

I'm excited to be participating in the I.C.A. Research Competition, and I've signed up for a tour of the Rico factory in L.A., so I'll definitely be reporting on those experiences as well as all the concerts and other events I can attend!  Don't forget to follow us on Twitter (@clarinetcache) for live updates.

As always, it is impossible to get to everything, so I would like to invite festival attendees to contact us if you are interested in submitting a guest post.  We could use reports on concerts, master classes, and especially the Young Artist and Orchestra Audition Competitions. 

For more information, visit the ClarinetFest 2011 page.  See you in L.A.!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

In Memoriam: Stanley Hasty

It is hard to think of a clarinetist and teacher in the recent past who has left a greater legacy than Stanley Hasty.  He performed as principal clarinet with the National Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.  He taught at Indiana University, the Peabody Conservatory, the Cleveland Institute, the Carnegie Institute, the New England Conservatory, the Juilliard School of Music, and the Eastman School of Music.  Many of his students have already become legendary themselves, among them Larry Combs and Elsa Ludewig-Verdehr. 

Stanley Hasty passed away on June 22 at the age of 91 due to injuries related to a car accident.  A memorial service will be held on Saturday, August 6, at 11am at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Rochester.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Saint Paul's David Craighead Organ Restoration Fund.

For more information, see:
Eastman School of Music article including quotations from many of Hasty's students
Obituary from Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Wikipedia article on Hasty including partial list of students
Elisabeth Marie Gunlogson: Stanley Hasty - His Life and Teaching, A treatise submitted to the Florida State University College of Music, 2006

Friday, July 15, 2011

Alternative Keywork

Almost every clarinet player at one point or another has asked ourselves is there an easier way to finger this passage?  Although most players own only one type of instrument, there are many different makes and models of clarinets available with modified mechanisms that can facilitate certain intervals or registers. Several models containing alternative keywork have been manufactured and patented over the years; however, not all have survived in today's mainstream market.

Back in our June 2009 column we covered websites that featured equipment and we briefly mentioned the site.  For those of you who have not had the chance to delve deeper into the website's content, the page for Alternative Keywork is a great resource for information on the various improvements and keywork modifications.  Not only does it give an outline of the different models, it also contains numerous up-close photos of keywork so viewers can easily examine the differences.  The systems listed include: Mazzeo system, McIntyre, Stubbins, van Perck, Pupeschi, and Full Boehm keywork.  At the bottom of the page, links to the National Music Museum provide additional photos and information on 5-key, 6-key, Ottensteiner, and Haynes Thermo clarinets.  Pages like this one remind us that our instrument does not reside in a static environment, and maybe the next big improvement is just around the corner.