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There is seemingly no shortage of method books for the beginner trumpet player available in music stores today. Many of them do a very good job of getting a student started on the trumpet, sometimes for even the first few years of playing. Once these books have been exhausted however, I have found that the next level of instruction often takes a larger step than the student is prepared for, specifically when it comes to range.
Finding etudes that do fit into a player’s developing range can sometimes be at the expense of challenging technique and musicality. The same is true for trumpet players who have been playing for years and then need to get braces. Mentally they are ready for new challenges, but physically they are temporarily limited by range and endurance. Furthermore, many intermediate level etudes fail to interest young trumpet players and stick only to one style.
It was for these reasons that I began composing my own etudes for my students. In an attempt to help fill this void in the repertoire, the etudes in this book address specific challenges I saw my own students facing while learning the instrument. Rhythm, phrasing, breath control, flexibility, agility, and musicality are all put to the test without going into a range that may not be developed yet. This is not to say that range should not continue to be developed at whatever pace is comfortable for the student, but it is not the purpose of this book.
Each etude is purposely written in a different style to reflect the demands of being a musician in today’s world. One must be flexible and comfortable in a variety of styles. The student (and teacher) should feel free to play these etudes in any order they wish, as they are meant as an addition to, not a replacement of, a well-rounded practice routine.
I hope you find these etudes interesting and challenging to play. I would like to thank my own students for being the guinea pigs during the creation of this book.
“Ted Clark’s 20 Interesting Etudes is a refreshing and welcome addition to the trumpet repertoire. Trumpet students of all ages and abilities face many challenges on the path to creating a strong foundation based on healthy sound production. Too often, repertoire can be a hindrance to building fundamental concepts. The etudes in this book are facilitators to building a strong, solid foundation due to the simple fact that they don’t get in the way. The music is pleasant with a huge variety of styles, and most importantly the bases are covered in terms of articulation, common keys, phrasing and slurring options, dynamics, time signatures, rhythmic interest, and a range that is any student’s ‘bread and butter.’ Thanks Ted, for sharing these fun etudes.”
Merrie Klazek, MMus, BMus
Assistant Professor of Trumpet, University of Victoria
“20 Interesting Etudes for the Developing Trumpet Player is a much needed resource to bridge the gap with younger students who need a slower approach to range development but then need challenges in their development of musicality, style variation, and rhythm. Highly recommended!”
Dr. Amy Gilreath
Professor of Trumpet, Illinois State University