Archive for April, 2002

World Class Brass Band Joins Getzen

Friday, April 12th, 2002

Doc Severinsen
Göteborg Brass Band with their new 3850 Custom Series Cornets
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When the Göteborg Brass Band stepped off the bus in Eau Claire, Wisconsin for their Midwest USA Tour, they were attempting something that many groups would not think of trying. They were receiving an entire new set of Getzen Cornets. This in itself is not so daring but deciding to leave their old cornets back in Sweden was. After spending time testing the instrument, principal cornetist Victor Kisnitchenko decided that the Getzen cornet significantly outperformed their current cornets and wanted the band to play them as soon as possible. Göteborg’s Brass Band Director, Bengt Eklund, also believed “the quality of sound in the new Getzen would greatly improve the concept of sound for the entire ensemble.”

The Göteborg Brass Band recently won the 2001 Swedish National Championship. Mostly made up of professional musicians and very highly skilled amateurs, the brass band has been in existence since 1982. Founded by its director Bengt Eklund, the brass band quickly gained an international reputation by participating in orchestral festivals and contests. These successes paved the way for new concert tours, which have encompassed four continents. Göteborg Brass Band has held the position as Swedish Champions for many years (as recently as 2001) but the band’s greatest success came in 1988 when it won the World Brass Band Championship and Entertainment Titles in Australia.

Doc Severinsen
Bengt Eklund

With a wide variety of musical genres (from Mozart’s Magic Flute to Thelonious Monk’s ‘Round Midnight) the brass band dazzles all who listens. Their Midwest tour took them through most of the state of Wisconsin and Minnesota. They were one of the spotlight performances at the Wisconsin Music Educators Convention in Madison where they amazed the audience. There were countless comments about their performance during the remainder of the conference. Most felt it was the highlight of the conference. Getzen is proud to be associated with such a world class organization. In Summer of 2002 the brass band will be receiving a set of Custom Series Trombones which they are awaiting anxiously.

Bengt Eklund, former trumpeter of the Göteborg Orchestra, and currently Professor at the School of Music and Musicology, Göteborg University and Professor of Trumpet at the Norwegian State Academy of Music in Oslo. He held the position of President of the European International Trumpet Guild from 1994-2000. His inspiration has lead the brass band to four CD’s – World Champions, The Magic Flute, Versatile Reality, and Ambassadors of Brass.

The Trumpet and Its Bore Size – How Critical is It?

Friday, April 12th, 2002

by Andrew Naumann

There are many choices when faced with buying a professional quality trumpet. One of the first decisions most players encounter is which bore size should I choose? Many players assume that a larger or smaller bore size will create the type of “feel” or blow they need (i.e. more open or a more resistant air stream). This article will help you understand the concept of bore and help you realize its importance when choosing a new trumpet.

Getzen 3051First, the design of the bore is not the size of the hole in the piston but rather it is determined by the size of the inside slide tubes of each of the valve slides (1st, 2nd and 3rd valve slides) and the tuning slide. The leadpipe and bell are conical. The general bore sizes offered on Bb trumpets range from .459″ to .468″.

I would like to first say that the differences in bell size and leadpipe design will change the resistance of the instrument, tonal production and rate of air flow much more significantly than the overall bore size. For these reasons, you should not concern yourself with bore size more than understanding the different leadpipes and bells for each trumpet you sample. Many professional trumpets manufacturers describe the shape of the bell as well as the leadpipe in detail along with giving a bore size. The significance of leadpipe design and bell design has a larger overall effect on the quality of sound and blow than bore size. With that in mind, when looking for your new trumpet, pay attention to the detailed descriptions of the bell and leadpipe and how they effect your playing and overall concept of sound you are trying to achieve.

Generally, the rate of taper in a leadpipe defines the quality of blow (open or resistant). A slower taper creates a more stable, resistant air stream and a fast taper creates an open free blowing air stream. As for bell design, larger bells produce a dark, free blowing feel and medium large bells offer a more controlled, brilliant tone. For example, if your concept of sound involves a darker tone, it would be best to begin with a trumpet that offers a larger bell in conjunction with a slower tapered leadpipe to help balance air flow. My experience has lead me to believe that the best playing instruments are balanced within themselves. Large bells with medium leadpipes or large leadpipes with medium large bells. This balance usually creates the optimum air flow you are looking for.

Where does bore fit into all of this? Basically, it puts it last on the priority list. Balance is what you are looking for. A balanced trumpet will offer a higher quality of sound with more stability and endurance for your embouchure. The ease of playability will encourage your development and ultimately produce higher quality performances.

A Night of 1000 Trumpets

Friday, April 12th, 2002

Doc Severinsen
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Doc SeverinsenDoc has done it again! The night of 1000 trumpets was held at Southern Mississippi University on October 9th 2001. The challenge was to assemble 1000 trumpeters in one arena for a spectacular performance that involved all. This idea was turned into an event complete with masterclasses and exhibitors along with a performance by the Southern Mississippi University Symphony Orchestra. Doc Severinsen was not only the featured artist at this great event but was the master of the ceremonies.

The event, sponsored by the University, achieved a total of more than 700 trumpeters playing at one time during the concert. Players from all over the USA and at least four other countries around the world attended. The event was scheduled to have well over 1000 players attend but the September 11th tragedy had a large effect on the turnout. All that did attend enjoyed a wonderful day of entertainment from Doc. The concert opened with a fanfare written especially for the mass trumpet ensemble.

Doc last visited Hattiesburg, MS in 1996 with the USM Symphony orchestra. According to the USM news report “prior to Doc’s long-running gig with the Tonight Show, Severinsen performed in the then-small college town of Hattiesburg in 1969. In his return in 1996, Doc pledged he would return every 30 years!” For our sake, it was great he returned in 2001.