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BRASS section

audition
packet

2008
high brass edition
Updated 10-13-07

CAROLINA CROWN BRASS PROGRAM


-Table of ContentsMusical Audition Information

Audition Recommendations

Equipment

Important Materials for Rehearsals

Get in Shape

Physical Fitness
Brass Technique Program

5
6

Posture

Moving & Playing Together

Step-outs

Air / Breathing Techniques

Embouchure Development

Singing

10

Long Tones

10

Lip Slurs / Flexibility Exercises

11

Style / Articulation

11

Volume

12

Pitch / Intonation

12

Balance and Blend

13

Bopping

14

Pedal Tones

14

Finger Technique

14

Music & Audition Comment Sheets

227A Main St. Fort Mill, SC 29715 crown@carolinacrown.org www.carolinacrown.org (803).547.2270

Dear Brass Ensemble Candidate:

Success is piece of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you


did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.
-

Jo hn Wo o den

It is with great pleasure that we welcome you to the Carolina Crown. This packet is full of important
information about the Carolina Crown Brass Technique Program and includes all of the necessary ensemble
exercises and audition materials. Read this information carefully and prepare the material to the best of your
ability before coming to camp.
We take great pride in our brass section. We look at the membership in Carolina Crown as a privilege and an
HONOR. There are many expectations and responsibilities that accompany this honor. The greatest
contribution one can make to the Crown brass ensemble is the willingness to sacrifice self-interest for the
benefit of the group. A team is only as strong as the loyalty of its members. The successful Crown member
internalizes and is accountable for some basic expectations:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

A respect for the people that surround you


A trust in both the staff and members
A dedicated effort towards everything you do
A desire to work hard
A commitment to excellence

These expectations, when rehearsed daily, can become part of a successful formula that leads towards your
membership in Carolina Crown and can be applicable to the rest of your day-to-day life.
As you look at both yourself and this upcoming drum corps season, make and keep promises and goals to both
yourself and others. Ask yourself, What do I want to get out of this experience? At the end of every
rehearsal, ask yourself, What more could I have done to move better, play better, and make a bigger
difference? Am I doing whatever it takes to become the best that I can be?
Goals should be high and attainable. Carolina Crown has a tradition of excellence, where standards grow each
year. Based on this tradition, you must take pride in who you are, and commit yourself to being a part of a
world class organization.
Once again, welcome you have no idea of the pleasure we have in teaching you every day.
Sincerely,
The Carolina Crown Brass Staff

Developing lifelong excellence in young people through a superior and challenging performing arts education experience

audition information
Here is a statement that has been heard many times:

There is no way I could be chosen for any drum corps, I am just not good enough.
Our number one rule in this brass section is to not be afraid. Many talented individuals fail to audition
every year because they dont believe themselves to be enough. Every position in every section is open
every year; past members will re-audition. The following are the requirements for becoming a member of
the Carolina Crown Brass Section:

TALENT: Your abilities on your instrument and your marching ability are very important in the
selection process. It is equally important to see your development and improvement from camp to camp.
This criterion is set and judged by our instructional staff. You will first be asked to play one or two
exercises from this packet, so be sure to familiarize yourself with all exercises in this packet. NOTE: We
would like for you to mark time as you play these exercises. Your specific audition music is included in
this packet.

ATTENDANCE: All brass members MUST bring their personal calendar to all camps.

Staff
members will go over your calendars at each camp and help sort out any conflicts or give advice to all
students during the busy times in their schedules. Attendance is required at all rehearsals and
performances. Occasionally, school and family conflicts may arise. In order for an absence to be
excused it must be communicated at least one week in advance to Matt Harloff at mhharloff@avonschools.org and Ray Linkous at ray@carolinacrown.org.
*All NO CALL NO SHOW members will be removed from the brass ensemble roster.

ATTITUDE: As with any team sport, chemistry is very important towards success: the same is true for
the Carolina Crown Brass Section. Our brass section will be full of students who will do whatever it
takes to make the brass section great. It will be incredibly fun to be a part of this brass section as long as
100% of the members work as hard as they possibly can, are extremely positive, and support both the
staff, and more importantly, each other.

HEALTH: Being healthy is very important in drum corps.

You must be physically capable of


withstanding the requirements of rehearsals, performances and travel. If you have any questions about
the physical requirements of the program, please call our office.

FEES / TUITION: You account status will have a direct impact on your membership in the corps.
Without fees and tuition, we would not be able to operate as a drum corps. In reality, fees make up just a
small portion of the total funds needed to run an organization of this size.
- It is ESSENTIAL that you keep your finances up to date if you expect to march! Always be mindful of your account, and never be afraid to call the Crown office if you have questions.
Always get problems out in the open early rather than deal with them later. To do so will allow you more
time to assess the situation and figure out a solution.

audition recommendations
BE PREPARED
Preparation is the key to all success. The more you prepare yourself, the better you will play at
your audition.
Find a practice routine that works for you and stick to it. If this habit continues throughout the
winter camps, you will be amazed with your growth as a musician.
Play for as many people as possible. Private instructors, Band Directors, and peers are all great
people to play for. Their suggestions and criticism can also be incredibly beneficial.
Your biggest and best critic will always be YOU. Record yourself and make notes; the recorder
never lies!
Your audition music does not need to be memorized, however we will always encourage you to
go above and beyond what is asked of you.

DEALING WITH NERVOUSNESS


The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience,
but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. -Martin Luther KingThe first thing you must understand is that being nervous is normal. Once you understand that, it
becomes easier to deal with your nervousness. Fighting nervousness can bring about negative
physical effects; instead, strive to embrace nervous feelings and focus that energy in a positive
way.
Breath. Let go of your emotions and begin with deep breaths.
Whenever possible, practice dealing with your nervous feelings by placing yourself in highpressure situations. Play in front of as many people as possible and record yourself frequently:
give yourself only one chance to perform for the recorder and see what kind of results you
produce.
Always visualize yourself playing at your very best ability.
It is likely that you will play something in your audition that will not go quite the way you would
have liked. The manner in which you deal with those mistakes can be just as impressive as if
you had played your piece perfectly. ALWAYS keep going, DO NOT apologize for your
audition, and NEVER give excuses.

THE AUDITION ROOM


Before you enter the audition room, be certain that: 1) your instrument is in good working
condition and 2) you have all paperwork, including your personal calendar with you
Once you enter, hand your music and papers to one of the staff members and stand where
instructed.
Face your bell off to the side of the people listening to you.
Always ask questions if you do not understand something.
Play at your highest ability.
Once you are finished playing, there will be a short conversation between you and various
members of the brass staff. If you have any further questions, please feel free to ask at this time.
Before you leave the room you will be given a rating: I = Outstanding audition your chances of
being in the brass section are very good; II = Very good audition your chances of being in the
brass section are fair; III = You will have to make significant improvements before you will be
considered as a candidate for the brass ensemble.
Finally, the brass staff would like to stress that the audition process does NOT end after the audition
camp. Final decisions for the Crown Brass Section will start being made at the February Camp.
Preparation, improvement, attitude, attendance, section ranking, marching ability, and physical condition
will be the determining factors for awarding a spot in the group.

equipment
The number of spots available in the brass section may change slightly from year to year, however, we
must be clear that every spot is open again each year. Returning members must demonstrate
improvement and continued effort to be considered for membership.
All students are required to possess a BERP and an AirMax Breather. Crown will make these items
available for purchase at a discounted price when you check-in at the camp.
BERP $15
AirMax Breather $8

TRUMPETS: Please bring your own trumpet to at least the first 2-3 camps.

Corps trumpets will never


be available for check out during the winter. You are responsible to bring your own mouthpiece to all
camps and to summer move-in.

MELLOPHONES: Whenever possible, bring an F Mellophone to at least the first 2-3 camps.

Corps
instruments will be available to you to check out after you have attended 3 camps and ONLY IF your
financial account is current. You are welcome to audition on a concert horn (you will need to bring you
own instrument), however you will be asked to perform on a marching mellophone at some point during
the audition process. You are responsible to bring your own mouthpiece to all camps and to summer
move-in.

BARITONE / EUPHONIUM: If possible, bring an marching baritone to at least the first 2-3
camps Corps instruments will be available to you to check out after you have attended 3 camps and
ONLY IF your financial account is current. You are welcome to audition on a concert euphonium or
trombone (you will need to bring you own instrument), however you will be asked to perform on a
marching baritone or euphonium at some point during the audition process. You are responsible to bring
your own mouthpiece to all camps and to summer move-in.

TUBAS: If possible, bring a marching tuba or sousaphone to the first to at least the first 2-3 camps.
Corps tubas will never be available for check out during the winter. You are welcome to audition on a
concert tuba - you will need to bring you own instrument. However, you will be asked to perform on a
marching tuba at some point during the audition process. You are responsible to bring your own
mouthpiece to all camps and to summer move-in.

mouthpieces
In order to achieve the most uniform section sounds, we have selected the following mouthpieces for the
Carolina Crown Brass Section. You are not required to purchase these mouthpieces for the audition.
However, you MUST purchase the specified mouthpiece if you are selected to be a member of the 2007
brass line. Please check with the CrownStore (www.thecrownstore.com / 803-547-2270) to make your
purchase. *subject to availability
Trumpets:

Bach 3C

Mellophones: Curry 1TF


Baritones:

Dennis Wick 5BL

Euphoniums: Dennis Wick 4 AL


Tubas:

Perantucci PT-50

IMPORTANT REHEARSAL MATERIALS


Brass Ensemble members are responsible for having the following materials at ALL
rehearsals:

THREE RING BINDER: This contains all music handouts in organized clear sheet
protectors. Any information you could possibly need should be in this binder.

PENCIL: Every brass ensemble member must have a pencil at all times. Notes should
be taken at every rehearsal, especially when rehearsing with the arrangers. Write
EVERYTHING down!

GLOVES: These must be worn when handling a Carolina Crown owned instrument.
You will go through many pairs of gloves during the season. It is important that your
gloves remain in good condition and are replaced as necessary. Gloves that are dirty or
contain holes are never acceptable.

BLACK TOWEL: Your Carolina Crown instrument is in one of three places at all
times: in your hand, placed in the line on the ground, or in its case. The black towel is
used to protect your instrument when placed on hard surfaces, especially when rehearsing
outdoors.

BASEBALL CAP: This will be worn when rehearsing outdoors. Hats are required
to shade your face, your eyes, and your chops when rehearsing indoors, hats are optional.

TENNIS SHOES / TRAINERS: Movement will occur at all rehearsals and


therefore tennis shoes are required at all times. Sandals, shower shoes, flip-flops, etc. are
never acceptable.

CLOTHING: You must wear clothing that will allow you to perform excessive
movement such as sweats, shorts, t-shirts, etc. NO JEANS!!! Again, movement will
occur at all rehearsals.

TAPE RECORDERS: Recording is encouraged at all Crown rehearsals because it


will aid in your individual progress. In addition, tapes are REQUIRED for those brass
ensemble members who miss rehearsals.

WATER BOTTLES: Each brass ensemble member is required to have a water jug
(no smaller than 1 gallon) beginning at move-in in June. These jugs must be present at
all rehearsals.

BERP: BERPS can be purchased at camps (discounted price) for $15.


AIRMAX BREATHER: A tool used with breathing exercises, this item can be
purchased at camps (discounted price) for $8.
4

GET IN SHAPE
PHYSICAL FITNESS
Carolina Crown considers all members to be professional athletes. It has been proven that drum corps
members actually perform with a physical effort equal to a professional sports athlete. Every successful
professional athlete has a very strict off-season fitness plan; you must think of yourself in the same way.
It is imperative that all of our brass members be in excellent physical health. If you have, or have had,
heart problems, asthma difficulties, knee surgery or medical issues with your knee(s); or back problems,
this activity may not be for you. All members of the Carolina Crown Brass Section must be capable of
sustaining a high level of cardiovascular activity for extended periods of time. It is recommended that
you seek out a physical trainer to assist you with creating a physical fitness plan for yourself in an effort
to be in the best physical shape possible.

Brass technique program


POSTURE
To be the most efficient when playing and marching, the body should be in the most natural and upright
position. Improper posture can cause injury and negatively affect your brass playing. While playing your
brass instrument, your weight should be evenly distributed on both feet; your upper body weight should
be lifted up from your waist (NOT leaning on the lower part of your back); your shoulders should be
relaxed; and your instrument bell angle is 10 degrees above parallel. The basic rules that apply to all hand
positions is that the hands are relaxed, finger tips are on the valves, valve casings are perpendicular to the
ground (except for the tubas), and your wrists are straight.

MOVING & PLAYING TOGETHER


Marking-time will be used in all music rehearsals where we do not march drill. In the future the marching
technicians will go into further detail regarding the proper way to mark time. Some basic rules for
marking-time are as follows:
The initiation of the mark-time will be one count or the and count (this depends on the tempo
of the exercise).
The heels of your foot will hit the ground on all down beats.
Your heal will come up to your anklebone.
Your upper body must not bounce or sway while you mark time; it should look as if you are
standing still.
The success of the brass ensemble will be determined by how well you play and move at the same
time. The sooner you start adding movement to your playing, the better you and the section will
become.

STEP-OUTS
In drum corps or marching band, you will find that nearly all timing & technique problems related to the
music or drill occur within the first two counts of a phrase or drill move. As an effort to tackle this
problem, step-outs were created. You simply take 2 steps in any direction (left foot, then right foot) at the
beginning of a musical phrase or during what would have been a drill move. You will take one step with
the left foot, and then bring your right foot to the left on the second count. On the next two counts, you
will go back to your original placement. You should vary the direction and step size taken so that you
may work on various areas of your marching technique while you play.

AIR & BREATHING TECHNIQUES


A state of relaxation is a very important aspect of great ensemble brass playing. Students enter a
rehearsal in various states-of-mind. It is imperative that we formulate a common physical and emotional
point of reference when we begin a rehearsal. Physical stretches are very important in the process of
relaxing the body. One method is to roll the head forward, left, back, right, and then in reverse. This will
help assure that the neck muscles are loose and will not impede the flow of the air in the breathing
process. A variation of this exercise would be to roll the shoulders forward and back, and then pull them
straight up (as if trying to touch the ears). Hold them in that position for approximately 3 seconds and
allow them to drop. Arm circles and upper body stretches are also excellent exercises to relax the body
before playing. After several repetitions the player should feel more relaxed and can then begin the
breathing process.

Great breath control is an important key toward playing a wind instrument well. There are many
components involved with taking a proper breath, and many books and articles have been written on this
particular subject. To achieve clarity through simplicity, we prefer to keep the following concepts in
mind while playing:
To achieve maximum breath control, breathe deeply into the lungs. As the diaphragm (a strong
doughnut shaped muscle under the ribs) pulls downward, room is created for the expansion of the
lower back, abdomen, and ribs. Lastly, the chest should expand after the capacity of the lower
torso is reached. One should inhale to the point where the body feels relaxed and full of air.
Never try to take in to much air and go towards a state where the body is at an uncomfortable.
To maintain a state of relaxation, the shoulders and the upper back must not be tense so that the
breathing passage is never constricted while inhaling or exhaling. Keep the throat open so there
is no resistance or audible friction. The only sound accompanying the inhale should be a very
soft hoe.
Air NEVER stops while playing. Air is either going in or out. Be careful not to cap the breath.
Capping occurs when the air is stopped after inhalation. Visualize the lungs as a giant bellows
that is constantly expanding and contracting.
During exhalation there should be a feeling of total release in the upper body. The air should
have a warm, engulfing sound and texture. An exhalation should never be forced. As the air is
released through the horn, it should reflect the timbre of that particular instrument. Exhale to the
point where your body reaches a state that is similar to when you are resting. Never try to
squeeze out the last bit of air in the lungs. Simply take a fresh full inhale when you feel you are
about halfway towards being out of air. Maintaining a constant in & out sensation will result in
stronger air-support that will produce a beautiful tone and stable pitch.
Releases should be approached through the initiation of a short inhalation. Using the tongue or a
contraction of the throat and jaw should never be used to release a note. Simply breathing inward
on a predetermined count will create a defined release. A uniform timing of the breath will
ensure uniform timing of the release throughout the entire ensemble.
To create a seamless sound, we utilize a technique called stagger breathing. By staggering the
points of breathing throughout the ensemble we can create an impenetrable wall of air or tone.
The basic rules of stagger breathing are:
Never breathe on a bar line
Never breathe between phrases
When you take a breath, take a full breath
When you breathe, leave notes out rather than playing a partial note value (except long
tones)
Do not breathe when the person next to you takes a breath
Sneak in and sneak out (to sneak out, get softer before you breathe and when coming
back in, start softer and crescendo back to the ensembles defined volume)
The timing of the breath is of the utmost importance. The breath will occur one count before the attack of
the note. The one count breath before the attack rule does bend when the tempo changes (sometimes 2
counts when fast). Failure to utilize this technique will result in significant timing problems.
All air exercises, technique exercises, and show music are performed with the instrument in the correct
playing position while using the correct playing embouchure. As the air is blown through the instrument,
the player should use different valve combinations. To force the performer to use more air in their
playing, many times we will have the player press the valves half way down to create more resistance. In
regards to airspeed, there SHOULD BE a difference in the air based on the range that is being played:

faster air for the higher notes, and slower air for the lower notes. There is also a difference when the
player changes volumes: more air for the lower notes and less air for the softer notes. Air exercises
should have different volume levels as well as different ranges. A key point is to always have consistent,
MOVING air.
Breathe and play. THE TIMING STARTS WITH THE BREATH! In other words, if we are to play
together on beat one, we all need to take a full breath on beat four.
Whenever an attack is early, it can usually be traced back to improper or poorly timed breathing. Late
attacks typically result from capped breaths (stopped air between in and out) or poor timing. The
performer must ALWAYS breathe and play with his or her feet to stay in time with the ensemble.
DO NOT:
Close the jaw upon the release
Choke the air with your glottis (closing your throat)
Use your tongue to stop a note (this can be detected 100 yards away!)
A clean release will ring for a moment even after the air has been released. Strive to make the note ring!
BREATHING EXERCIZES
While performing the following exercises, the player should be concerned with filling up his or her lungs
completely while maintaining relaxation. In normal everyday situations, humans use about 20-25% of
their lung capacity. In playing a wind instrument, we strive to push that towards 90%.
Proper use of the diaphragm should allow an outward expansion of the midsection of the body. This is
easiest to see in the stomach area, but the expansion should also be felt in the sides as well as the back.
Once the lung capacity is full, the focus should switch toward releasing all of the air out. It is important
to completely empty the lungs because the lungs will start to store carbon dioxide. If the air is not
released to its natural point, this carbon dioxide will build up and begin to decrease the players lung
capacity, causing unnecessary stress, tension, dizziness, and exhaustion.
When you begin these exercises, take in as much air as possible, and then release ALL of the air through
the horn (again, this is essential). You should concentrate on taking ALL of the counts to perform each
portion of the exercise. If four counts are given to take in air, the player should take all four counts to do
so, then turn the air around, moving it out. This will take away any dead time that is similar to holding
your breath. There should be no hitch in the breathing process. This will give the player the greatest
efficiency with regards to the use of air when playing.
These exercises should be done with and without the instrument. In both cases, relaxation is a key factor
towards producing a proper air-stream; the avoidance of tension will allow for a more effective use of the
air-stream. It is important with all of these exercises that you try to imitate the way you play in a
performance situation as closely as possible. Simply playing through the exercises without a thought of
application is not effective and will form bad habits.
There are many different kinds of breathing exercises and devices that we will utilize throughout
the winter and summer such as: sizzling, AirMax Breathers, and various applications with and without the
mouthpiece. All exercises will develop and improve your air support.

EMBOUCHURE DEVELOPMENT
Most professional brass musicians practice with the mouthpiece on a regular basis. The benefits of
mouthpiece buzzing include: being able to isolate embouchure and tone production problems; improved
aural skills; and less lip fatigue (the exercises are easier to produce without the brass instruments
resistance).
The first notes we will play every day will usually be on the mouthpiece. There will be much attention
placed on how you produce that sound and its overall quality. The mouthpiece, embouchure, and air
support combine to create the true instrument; the tubing of the brass instrument merely resonates your
buzz. The quality of the sound on the mouthpiece directly correlates to the players tone quality when the
mouthpiece is added to the instrument. Therefore, developing a dark and resonant sound on the
mouthpiece should be a priority for all brass players.
There are numerous articles written about embouchure development for each of the instruments. We
strongly recommend that you find and research these articles so that you may apply the information to
your specific instrument. You should also continue to reinforce the embouchure work that you may have
done with your private lesson instructor.
There are some basic embouchure rules that can be applied to all brass players:
The corners of the mouth need to be firm and strong with a comfortably set.
The mouthpiece should be placed as close to perpendicular on the lips as possible - not too
upstream or downstream.
Both lips should have enough flesh on the mouthpiece to allow for a full, robust buzz.
Always bring the mouthpiece to the same place on your lips.
The jaw should always be open - especially in the lower register.
The teeth are apart.
The mouthpiece should be held with your non-dominant hand, palm facing out, with the shank of the
mouthpiece in between your middle and ring finger. This method of holding your mouthpiece will force
you to use very little pressure against your embouchure. If the lips are buzzing freely, a full mouthpiecesound will result. Again, be certain that the corners are locked and there is always excellent breath
support. When buzzing, there should always be a dark, open Oh sound. If the sound is bright and
tinny, open your jaw more, and firm up the corners. Be sure to check that the mouthpiece is not forced
against your lips.
In addition to warm-up exercises, mouthpiece playing will help improve accuracy discrepancies in the
show music. Every player in the ensemble should be able to play any part of the show music on his or her
mouthpiece.
TO SLIDE OR NOT TO SLIDE ON THE MOUTHPIECE
When playing flexibility exercises on the mouthpiece, target the exact pitch. Sliding will cause intonation
problems as everyone jockeys for position on the correct pitch. Sliding also causes serious timing
problems because players arrive at the pitch at different times.
When practicing on your own, or even during a warm down, we DO recommend sliding as a technique to
regain true flexibility and to allow the corners of the mouth to relax. When we have 60+ players trying to
play together, we need to nail every pitch with no sliding.
Many of you may be asking yourself, How do I play large interval leaps without sliding? The answer is
easy: AIR VELOCITY and tongue elevation while buzzing in the mouthpiece.

In other words, if a players air moves at 50 mph for a middle C, it should move at 100 mph for a high
C. Every pitch should have a specific air velocity that will help you find the pitch-center rapidly and
efficiently. On the other side of this concept, do not slow down the air too much in the lower range, as
the pitch will go flat and the tone will be thin.
FOGHORN AN EXTENSION OF THE MOUTHPIECE
Foghorn is an exercise that involves removing the tuning-slide of a brass instrument and inserting only
one end of the slide back in. The difference between the foghorn and the mouthpiece is that with foghorn,
there is more resistance and there are breaks between ranges. For example, going from a lower pitch to a
middle pitch, you go through a break (similar to a slur). The following rules apply to foghorn:
Breath attacks are used
Define the pitch you will play every instrument will be different
Try to match that pitch every time you come back to it
Work to minimize any shaking in the sound
Work to minimize any air-in-the-sound with regards to your tone quality
Use as much air as possible you should play at a solid forte level at all times
No pressure should be placed on the embouchure
BERP
The Buzz Extension and Resistance Piece (BERP) is another tool used in development of tone and
embouchure. The BERP allows the brass performer to work with a high level of resistance during the
movement rehearsals.

SINGING
Singing is a wonderful tool for developing great ensemble tone quality and intonation. The brass section
will sing frequently, and we will have a very serious approach to the technique of singing. The resonance
and breath support necessary for singing are quite similar to proper brass playing. When singing, we use
the radio announcer voice, the voice that seems to project a great distance. The following are
guidelines for all singing exercises:
The throat should be open
The same approach to breathing, air support, and direction of air will be enforced in singing as in
our instrument playing
Everyone should always be listening to match the pitch
We will use different vowel sounds, including humming
We will always be checking the pitch before and after we have sung
We will work on and be able to sing everything in the technique book, chorales, and show music

LONG TONES
There are several benefits from playing long tones everyday. Along with mouthpiece work, this allows
the muscles in your face to loosen up and helps you to become comfortable with the instrument.
Primarily, this is an opportunity for the player to concentrate solely on tone quality, breath support, and
intonation. Without the distraction of rhythms and notes, the player can focus on playing in tone with
his/her section and throughout the ensemble. Long tones are essential toward establishing a solid center
of pitch for the warm-up. Balance and blend are key factors to this portion of the warm-up. Players
should be listening for intonation, blend of tone, intensity, as well as quality of sound. Our long tone
exercises consist of 9, 7, or 13 count tones going down in half steps and/or Remington studies.

10

LIP SLURS / FLEXIBILITY EXERCISES


Lip slurs play a huge part in the development of any brass players flexibility. The ability to move fluidly
from partial to partial while maintaining accurate pitch is essential. Providing a consistent air stream
throughout the musical line will allow the player to attain this fluidity. The exercise should not be
thought of merely as an exercise, rather as a musical phrase. Each musical line should have purpose,
movement, and arrive at a destination.

STYLE & ARTICULATION


Articulation should be executed with no explosion in the attack. Every note should be started with the
sound dAAh in mind (notice the lowercase d and uppercase A). Each player should strive for less
tongue in the sound and focus on providing more tone. Close to 90% of an attack is the air and only 10%
is the tongue. THE AIR STREAM SETS THE BUZZ INTO ACTION, NOT THE TONGUE!
LEGATO TONGUING
When tonguing in a legato style, the air is virtually unbroken as the tongue plays each note like a soft
paintbrush. Be mindful to keep the tongue moving fast; do not chew the notes.
STACCATO TONGUING
Remember, staccato does not always mean short!!! It means separated or detached. To produce a good
staccato, keep the air stream supported and create perfect blocks of sound: each block identically
matching the one that preceded it.
Make sure that the tongue starts every note, but does not finish it. Otherwise, a DIT articulation will
result. Remember to keep every articulation an open-ended, even staccato.
MARCATO TONGUING
This style lies between the staccato and legato articulations. It can best be explained as a sustained
staccato with only a small bit of separation between notes.
STYLE EXERCISES
By isolating a particular style, the player can maximize his or her practice time by supplementing the
music with style exercises. Rhythmic integrity is a primary focus with style exercises. The correct
interpretation of each style begins with rhythmic accuracy. From there, note duration and articulation
clarify the intent of the music.
ARTICULATION EXERCISES
Articulation exercises are an integral part of developing the relationship between the tongue and the air
stream. It is important to understand that the tongue cannot articulate properly if there is not enough air
support. These exercises are intended to develop a consistent and clear approach to the motion and speed
of the tongue and air. It is also important to know that the clarity of the articulation should not be affected
by tempo, technique, note length, volume, or range. The only time an articulation will change is when the
style being played changes.

11

VOLUME
Power and quantity of sound are trademarks of great brass ensembles. This type of playing
requires a constant monitoring of the players quality and intonation. The key to playing loud is
relaxation. An ugly, spread tone is often the result of tension and forced breathing. You must
stay open to maximize the amount of air involved during the inhalation to produce a large and
flowing fff exhale. The corners of the mouth must be kept firm to support the large volume of
air pouring through the aperture. Visualize the lips wrapping around the air stream when playing
at fuller dynamic levels. Great care should be taken through the building of volume over a given
period of time. Playing loud with a round, beautiful sound is a goal that will require great
concentration over a long period of time.

PITCH & INTONATION


It is not whether the instrument is built in tune, but if it can be played in tune.
All brass instruments have various inherent intonation deficiencies. As a brass ensemble, we
need to be aware of what deficiencies exist, and how we can correct them with our playing. We
build our system of tuning through the matching of overtones, which are by definition, never out
of tune. Overtones will ring when the pitches coming out of the horns are in tune. For example,
when the baritone section locks in on and open Bb, usually the F above can be heard quite
clearly even though there are no performers playing it.
There are also many natural intonation deficiencies when dealing with the structure of chords.
The following is a list of intervals (from the root of the chord) and the natural pitch tendencies
each interval has:
INTERVAL
Unison
Minor Second
Major Second
Minor Third
Major Third
Perfect Fourth
Tritone
Perfect Fifth
Minor Sixth
Major Sixth
Minor Seventh
Dominant Seventh
Major Seventh
Octave

HOW TO ADJUST IN CENTS


0
raise 11.73
raise 3.91
raise 15.64
lower 13.68
lower 1.95
raise 3
raise 1.95
raise 13.68
lower 15.64
Lower 3.91
lower 31.17
lower 11.73
0

As all of the voices become more in tune with each other, entire chords can be heard ringing
above the brass ensemble. In addition to working with a tuner every day, our singing,
mouthpiece, long tone, and relative pitch exercises will help you develop your ears for tuning
chords and unison notes. We strongly recommend investing in a good tuner and practicing with
it on a regularly.

12

CHORD PROGRESSIONS
Chord progressions are an integral part of every brass players daily routine. As we play through
these progressions, be aware of all of the notes changing around you. For example:
If you play the same note in two different chords, you almost always have to do something
different to the note to keep it in tune:
Recognize what part of the chord you are playing. Is it the root? Or the third?
Listen with big ears. Know all of the parts and how your part fits into the ensemble.
Crescendo the moving lines (especially the descending passages).

BALANCE & BLEND


The first criterion toward achieving great balance and blend is perfect intonation. If one note in a
chord is played out of tune, then balance cannot be achieved properly. The second criterion is
always know who has the moving line, and who has the melody. This is achieved by keeping
your ears aware of the parts being played around you. The third criterion is a combination of
balance, support, and playing in soloistically. Each part in an ensemble is unique in its own way.
We as good brass players know when to support a given line, create balance within that line, or
project an important line with a full supported sound.
When trying to achieve good balance and blend:
Ask yourself, am I in tune with the ensemble? First listen to intonation in your section, then
branch out to other sections, always keeping in mind that you should listen down to the bass
voice.
If you are supporting a moving line, ask yourself, am I playing louder than that line?
Finally, ask yourself, am I playing within the other sounds, balancing my sound against it with a
rich, supported, full bodied tone?
Balance and Blend requires the performer to listen very closely. There are 3 levels of listening
required if you are to become a greatly balanced brass section:
Level One Listening focuses on the sounds, volume, style, etc of his or herself. Selfawareness is an important key toward higher level playing.
Level Two Listening focuses on the sounds, volume, style, etc of the other members in
each respective section.
Level Three Listening focuses on the sounds, volume, style, etc of all instruments in the
ensemble.

13

BOPPING
Bopping is a technique that is used to improve timing and perfect uniform articulation and tone
production. Bopping is executed by reducing every note down to a staccato eighth note.
Additional rules to bopping are as follows:
Everything is performed at the dynamic of p (piano).
Slurred passages are played full duration to the end of the slur.
Tied notes are not to be played.
Make sure the throat is open and relaxed. No Dit articulation should be heard. Only dAAh.
Keep all notes open-ended.

PEDAL TONES
Pedal tones are an important part of our brass program and should be a part of every brass
players daily ritual. When playing pedals, listen carefully to the pitch, especially to F, E, Eb, D,
and Db. These notes do not actually exist and you need to push them down as you play them.
Once you hit pedal C and downward to F#, they will be flat. This occurs because these notes are
in the overtone series of your instrument. Make sure that your corners stay somewhat firm in the
pedal register.
The effective use of pedals in your warm-down and practice routine will:
Soothe your embouchure
Provide greater command of your instrument
Aid your attack confidence
Develop better lip vibration
Create a bigger sound in all registers
Develop endurance

FINGER TECHNIQUE
When playing fast passages, we recommend pressing the valves down with authority, while
keeping a relaxed feel in the wrists and fingers. Do not lose control of the valve on the way back
up. The fingers should be rounded and the tips should press the valve straight up and down. If a
player pushes the valves on an angle, the valves will stick and make technical passages
unplayable.

14

Carolina Crown Brass Program


9 Count

cw

7 Count

13 Count

12 Count

17 Count

21 Count


J
.

w
w

w
w

w
w

5 Count

4 Count

w

J


J
.

..
J

..
J


J
.

..

..
J

w
w

..

..
J

w
J


J
.

w
J

J

AIR

..

..
J

Important Rules in Ensemble Breathing


Deep Full Breaths

No Shallow Breaths

Air is going In or Out - One Motion

Support to the release

Use a full count to breathe

Release by taking a short breath in

Always move your feet

Expand outwards, NOT upwards

STAY RELAXED!

Carolina Crown Flexibility Exercises


High Brass

NOTES
Every double bar is a step out
All exercises go down 3 half steps and back up

G / Low C

&c w

#w

&

2 Note Lip Slur

Zorro 1

&

G / C / Low C

# #


# # #

&

4 Note Lip Slur

&

Zorro 2

b b


# #
&

#
#

3 Note Lip Slur

b
b

b
b

# # #

# # #

&

Quarter Notes Low

&

Eighth Notes Low

b
.

Eighth Notes High

&

Quarter Notes High

# # # .

# # .

b b.
b

b b

b
b.

Carolina Crown Brass Program


Trumpets

Full Ensemble Technique

&c w

F
Remington

&w

ww

&w

b www
bw

Articulation
4

w
w

b ww
b ww
w
w

b ww
b ww
w
w

w
w

w
w

ww
ww

w
U

w
w

# . . . . . . . .

ww

ww
ww

w
w

. . . . . . . .

w
w

w
w

. . . . . . . .

j
& . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

j
# . . . . . . . . . . . . . # .

j
& . . . . . . . . . . . . .

j
# . . . . . . . . . . . . # .

j
& . . . . . . . . . . . . .

j
# . . . . . . . . . . . . # .

Articulation
3

w
w

w
w

w
w

w
w

ww

ww
ww

& . . . . . . . .

w
b ww

ww
ww

& ww

Articulation
2

b ww

& ww

&w
w

Bb
Remington

Articulation
1

# ww

Wrist 1

Carolina Crown

> . . . > . . . > .


3
& 4 b . n b . n
>
>

>.
b

b
& . b . . n . . b . . n .
> >
> >
Wrist 2

>.
>
>
b .b n . . b . .b n . . .
>
>

b b .
> . . # > . . > . . # > . . >

& c
www
f

&
Stagger Breathing Exercises
Unison Exercise

&w
f

J
p

air attack

Ensemble Exercises

Members will be numbered 1, 2 or 3. You will take a breath with


the proper stagger breathing technique on or near the count shown

16 count tone

&w

24 count tone

&w

32 count tone 1

&w

Trumpet in B b

2008 Trumpet Audition

q "The Reason"
> > > > >
> b >
4
&b 4

6
b > ..
> > > b > b > >

&b
J
3
&b 4

12

> ..
4 b
4

> >
J

n > > # > >


3 # > > 4 >
&b
4
4

>

19

q "Stampede"
b
R . R .
&
F


b
R .
&
&b w
P

"Bohemian Rhapsody"

w>
j

& b n
3
F

&b

..

43

b R
.

J
b
- w-

n .
.

J .
J

q "William Tell"
.
.
>
>
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . >

&
f
&

50

55

n w>

b >
J
F
. . . . > > > >

>

> > >

> > >

b R
.

n.

40

46

30

> >
J


b
R .

27

33

>
b >J
J

>
J
F

> > >

Carolina Crown

. . . . . . . . . . . . w>

>

>

>

Carolina Crown Brass Program


Mello

Full Ensemble Technique

&c w

F
Remington

&w

ww

&w

b www
bw

Articulation
4

w
w

b ww
b ww
w
w

b ww
b ww
w
w

w
w

w
w

ww
ww

w
U

w
w

# . . . . . . . .

ww

ww
ww

w
w

. . . . . . . .

w
w

w
w

. . . . . . . .

j
& . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

j
# . . . . . . . . . . . . . # .

j
& . . . . . . . . . . . . .

j
# . . . . . . . . . . . . # .

j
& . . . . . . . . . . . . .

j
# . . . . . . . . . . . . # .

Articulation
3

w
w

w
w

w
w

w
w

ww

ww
ww

& . . . . . . . .

w
b ww

ww
ww

& ww

Articulation
2

b ww

& ww

&w
w

Bb
Remington

Articulation
1

# ww

Wrist 1

> .b . > .n . > .b . > .n . > .


3
&b 4

Carolina Crown

b > . b . > . n . b > . b . > . n . b > .


b
&
Wrist 2

>b . .b >n . . >b . .b >n . . > .

> b . . > . . > b . . > . . > .


n
n


b
c

&

w
b
&

f
Stagger Breathing Exercises
Unison Exercise

&w
f

J
p

air attack

Ensemble Exercises
Members will be numbered 1, 2 or 3. You will take a breath with
the proper stagger breathing technique on or near the count shown

16 count tone

&w

24 count tone

&w

32 count tone 1

&w

Horn in F

2008 Mellophone Audition


Carolina Crown
"Celestial Nights"

b
4
3
& 4 b b n 4
FP
P
P

>
& .
f

>
J

>
46 .

4 j
&4

17

&

>
2

&4
q

b 4
&b 4 w
p

&

>


w
P

j j .
F

42

bb

b
&b

48

"Bohemian Rhapsody"

35

b >.
&b

w>

>
43

24

29

. . # 2
44
4
f

> > > b > > > Gli~s~s.~ >


.~~ J
b

> .G~li~s~s.~>
~ J

11

>
44 J

> >
J
J

4 > . . . b . > b b > . . > >


4
P

w
P

>.
3
4

2
4

b b 44

>J .

rit.

. > > > .


J b
J J

.
w

nb

>
>
. . . . . . . . . . . . > > > >

&
. .
. .
f

51

&b

56

"William Tell"

. . . . . .

. . . . . .

w>

bb

>
b>
&b

59

b
&b

65

b
&b

77

w>

> > >

j>
b b
>

"The Reason"

>
b b

b 4 > .
b
& 4

71

Pg.2

2008 Mellophone Audition

> b >
J
3 .
4

> > >


4w
4


>
> .

> b >
J

>
J
F

>
J

> > >

>

# w>

> > w

>

j
b
>F

n
w

w>
f

w
3
4

4
4
n

Name:
Age:

________________________

_________________________

Email:

____________________________________

School:

___________________________________

(PLEASE CIRCLE YOUR INSTRUMENT)

TRUMPET

MELLOPHONE

BARITONE

Excellent

EUPHONIUM

Average

TUBA

Poor

Posture:

Embouchure:

Breathing:

Tone Quality:

Range:

Articulation & Style:

Flexibility:

Musicality:

Feet:

Overall Comments:

Member Rating:

II

III

Receiving a I or a II does not guarantee a spot in the Crown Brass Section, but serves as an invitation to attend
the camps in December and January. Final decisions will start to be made at the conclusion of the February
Camp.
We appreciate your interest in the Carolina Crown.

Name:
Age:

________________________

_________________________

Email:

____________________________________

School:

___________________________________

(PLEASE CIRCLE YOUR INSTRUMENT)

TRUMPET

MELLOPHONE

BARITONE

Excellent

EUPHONIUM

Average

TUBA

Poor

Posture:

Embouchure:

Breathing:

Tone Quality:

Range:

Articulation & Style:

Flexibility:

Musicality:

Feet:

Overall Comments:

Member Rating:

II

III

Receiving a I or a II does not guarantee a spot in the Crown Brass Section, but serves as an invitation to attend
the camps in December and January. Final decisions will start to be made at the conclusion of the February
Camp.
We appreciate your interest in the Carolina Crown.