62 - Embouchure Reminder
|Hoofdstuk 62 - Paragraaf 7
62. Embouchure Reminder/>
Prof. Dr. Matthias Bertsch, head of the department Musikwissenschaften von Universität Wien says about The Embouchure Reminder nr. 3 .:
"This diagnostic overview Poster about lips, mouthpiece and embouchure is : “Absolutely Fantastic Professional”.
Matthias Bertsch is one of the greatest music scientists of our era."
______________________________________________________________ Vaesrade 3-10-2013
Embouchure Reminder 3
Naast mijn baan als professioneel trompettist ben ik heel actief in het doceren van klein koper.
Dit is een speciaal vakgebied dat op veel vlakken mijn interesse heeft.
De kunst van goed lesgeven is dat je in een momentopname meteen kunt analyseren wat een leerling goed of fout doet. Deze analyse beslaat een groot aantal aspecten die ik nader wil specifiëren.
1) De theoretische aspecten zoals notennamen, toonhoogte, ritme, voortekens, maatsoorten, dynamiek, articulatie, muziekstijlen…
2) De lichamelijke aspecten zoals embouchure, vingerzetting, aanzet, ademhaling, ademsteun, tongpositie, pivoteren
3) Controle leerhulpmiddelen, instrument, juiste mondstuk, juiste methode
Veel van deze aspecten zijn meteen en snel te analyseren.
Maar een aantal lichamelijke aspecten hebben onderdelen die erg abstract zijn. Deze abstracte onderdelen maken snel analyseren ingewikkelder.
Je kunt niet door een mondstuk heen kijken om te zien wat een leerling met zijn tong of lipopening doet. Je kunt niet meteen zien wat een leerling wel of niet met zijn ademsteun doet.
Of probeer deze punten eens aan een volenthousiaste 8 jarige leerling begrijpend uit te leggen……..
Hans Boschma heeft met zijn Embouchure reminder 1 en 2 het ons als docent een stuk gemakkelijker gemaakt.
Bovenstaande abstracte onderdelen worden door middel van duidelijke tekeningen meteen een stuk concreter gemaakt. Visualiseren is het middel!
De leerlingen kunnen zien wat ze met hun tong moeten doen als ze van toonhoogte veranderen. Ze zien wat er gebeurd met hun middenrif. Ze zien de lipopening veranderen….
Daardoor wordt alles ineens veel makkelijker bespreekbaar en kun je snel goede resultaten boeken.
Deze poster gebruik ik al vele jaren met veel succes.
Erg blij was ik dan ook toen ik van Hans Boschma hoorde dat er een embouchure reminder nr 3 in de maak was.
Samen met Kees Hein Woldendorp heeft hij het voor elkaar gekregen om wederom een duidelijke poster op de markt te brengen waar problemen die koperblazers kunnen ondervinden visueel in kaart worden gebracht.
Doctor Donald S. Reinhardt heeft in 1973 met zijn Encyclopedia of the pivot system een overzicht gegeven van de vele problemen die koperblazers kunnen ondervinden. Dit is een dik boek dat erg onoverzichtelijk is en erg theoretisch.
Problemen hierin opzoeken kost veel tijd.
Dit past geenszins in mijn onderwijspraktijk waar snelanalyse voor mij een must is.
Embouchure reminder 3 is naar mijn mening de eerste duidelijke poster waar
door middel van een poster met duidelijke afbeeldingen ons een overzicht wordt gegeven van de meest voorkomende mondstanden. Wat doet onze lipopening en hoe staat het mondstuk ten opzicht van onze lipopening.
Ook wordt ons een goed overzicht gegeven van afwijkende mondstanden en de daaruit voortvloeiende eventuele lichamelijke en/of muzikale consequenties.
Dit kun je de leerling nu laten zien. Mijn ervaring is dat dit erg duidelijk is en daardoor snel werkt.
Wat ik heel belangrijk vind is dat er een goede weergave wordt gemaakt van het pivoteren.
En dan met name de stand van het mondstuk, de lipopening en de luchtstroom met hun richting in het mondstuk. Dit is normaal erg moeilijk uit te leggen maar deze poster visualiseert dit perfect.
Deze poster hangt in mijn studio naast embouchure reminder 1 en 2 en ik zal deze dan ook veelvuldig gaan gebruiken in het oplossen van problemen bij mijn leerlingen.
Alle lof aan de makers van deze poster, Hans Boschma en Drs. Kees Hein Woldendorp want deze poster is een waardevolle aanvulling als leerhulpmiddel in ons onderwijs.
Trompettist orkest André Rieu en docent klein koper.
Dirigent, Trompettist, Docent.
De eerste stappen op muzikaal gebied heb ik op 9-jarige leeftijd gezet bij de Koninklijk Erkende Fanfare St. Cecilia Bocholtz. Na een korte theorie opleiding bij Dhr. Jeu Weijers begon ik les te volgen op Bugel bij Dhr. Klinkers. Later heb ik mijn diploma’s gehaald aan muziekschool te Kerkrade bij Dhr. Jacobs. Rond mijn 13e levensjaar kwam daar ook de trompet bij.
In 1990 ben ik begonnen op het Jeanne d’Arc College te Maastricht, waar ik de HaCo (havo-conservatorium) heb gevolgd. Mijn trompetdocent was Dhr. Guido Segers (1e trompettist van de Münchner Philharmoniker).
In 1992 ben ik aan het Conservatorium te Maastricht gaan studeren. Mijn diploma Docerend Musicus heb ik behaald in 1997, mijn docent was toen Dhr. Raymond Vievermanns (1e trompettist van Het Brabants Orkest).
Vervolgens heb ik mijn studie voortgezet bij Dhr. Theo Wolters (trompettist bij Het Koninklijk Concertgebouw Orkest) en heb mijn diploma Uitvoerend Musicus behaald in 1999. Hiernaast heb ik lessen gehad van Prof. Reinhold Friedrich en Prof. Anna Freemann.
In 2001 begon ik aan de opleiding voor HaFaBra-Directie aan de Artez hogeschool voor de kunsten, bij Dhr. Alex Schillings. Het examen heb ik met goed gevolg afgesloten in 2005 met medewerking van de Douane Harmonie Nederland. Ik heb veel ervaring mogen opdoen middels het spelen en het volgen van masterclasses bij grote dirigenten. Denk hierbij aan Jan Cober, Heinz Friezen, Alex Schillings, Sef Pijpers Sr., Frenk Rouschop, Fried Dobbelstein, Eugene Corporon, Marc Soustrot, Marc Wigglesworth, Reinbert de leeuw, Ed Spanjaard enzovoorts.
Vanaf 1992 heb ik regelmatig geremplaceerd als trompettist bij Het Brabants Orkest, De Radio Orkesten, Het Orkest van het Oosten, Het Gelders Orkest en het Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest. Het Johann Strauss Orkest van André Rieu.
Tijdens mijn studie ben ik trompettist geweest bij diverse Jeugdorkesten zoals Het Nationaal Jeugd Orkest, Jeugd orkest Nederland en het Nationaal Jeugd Harmonie Orkest.
Van 2000 tot 2003 heb ik als 1e trompettist gewerkt bij het Fanfare Korps Koninklijke Landmacht.
In december 2002 heb ik mijn eerste stappen op directie gebied gezet bij Harmonie Inter Nos te Epen en Fanfare St. Antonius Genhout.
Momenteel ben ik 1e trompettist en 2e dirigent bij de Douane Harmonie Nederland. Verder speel ik als freelance muzikant bij diverse orkesten in ons land. Op het gebied van de kamermuziek ben ik actief bij ensemble Southern Brass.
Als Docent ben ik werkzaam voor de Fanfare St.Cecilia Bocholtz en Fanfare Les Amis Reunis Ransdaal.
Als Dirigent ben ik momenteel verbonden aan de Fanfare Onze Lieve Vrouw Kapel in ’t Zand Roermond, Fanfare St. Jozef Buchten en Brassband Merum.
Als actief trompettist ben ik uiteraard zeer geïnteresseerd in alles wat met embouchure te maken heeft. De laatste tijd heb ik mezelf verdiept in diverse methodieken en zo veel over mijn eigen embouchure geleerd. Dit werkt ook weer zeer goed voor mijn leerlingen. Met name methodes als THE balanced embouchure en de Cat Anderson methode naast Clarke en Stamp werkt voor mij zeer goed.
Hopelijk zijn jullie hiermee gediend. Anders hoor ik het graag.
Since I've gotten a few different emails from you folks, essentially from the same conversation, I thought I'd consolidate my replies into one longer email, especially since some of my thoughts concerning different messages may be of interest or relevant to all of you.
First, thanks for your interest in my studies of brass embouchures. I really appreciate the collaborative effort you all are making, particularly since you all are conversing in a foreign language with me. The second language I studied in school was Spanish and since I don't have much opportunity to practice it I've forgotten much of it. I'm always impressed by how so many Europeans speak many different languages so well and am embarrassed at how poor my second language is. Google translate helps me, but it does a pretty poor job in many cases.
Hans, regarding the drawings you sent me, thanks for taking the time to do that. It appears that you are trying to describe Doug Elliott's observations, however that is not accurate to what he taught me nor does it represent what I find when I observe brass players. This is the main disagreement I have with your descriptions of how a brass embouchure functions. You appear to believe that players will direct the air stream upwards in the cup for the upper register (above the throat) to ascend and blow downstream (below the throat) for the lower register (although if I recall correctly you stated that some players may do the reverse). This is not accurate according to what I've studied. Drawings aside, I think the video or photographic evidence that is available falsifies your hypothesis. If you have some photographic or video evidence you can show me that supports your argument I'm curious to see it and would need to modify my thoughts then.
I know you state you're already familiar with these principles, but it doesn't appear that you fully understand the embouchure models that Doug Elliott describes (which are my preferred ones, Doug's former teacher, Donald Reinhardt had much more detailed ones). There are essentially two different embouchure characteristics that can be used to classify embouchures into three basic types, the general direction of the air stream, and the use of what Doug has termed the "embouchure motion."
The embouchure's air stream direction is determined not by horn angle, jaw position, or tongue position inside the oral cavity, but by the ratio of upper to lower lip inside the mouthpiece. When the player places the mouthpiece with more upper lip inside (more common) the upper lip predominates inside the mouthpiece and the air stream is blown down. When the player places the mouthpiece with more lower lip inside (less common, I haven't run stats but my best guess is maybe around 10-15% of the population) the air stream is blown upward. If the player places with more or less equal amounts of lips inside the mouthpiece one lip or another predominates and the air goes either up or down, sometimes flipping direction at a certain point in the range (similar to what you seem to believe happens with all or most players, Hans, but more on this phenomena later).
For downstream embouchures the air stream will typically be blown closer to going straight down the shank the lower in the register. When downstream players ascend the air will pass the lips at an even lower angle and strike closer to the lower rim of the mouthpiece. Here is a photo of a downstream trombonist playing a Bb in the bottom of the bass clef staff.
It's much easier to observe where the air is striking inside the cup on video or, better still, in person, but you can get a general idea where it appears the air is striking by looking at the position of the lips and aperture. In person you can actually see the moisture inside the cup get disturbed by the air where it is directed inside the cup in many cases. Here is a photo of the same player playing a Bb two octaves above that one.
Notice that the position of the lips and aperture suggest that this player is directing the air stream even lower inside the mouthpiece cup. Now compare those two photos to an upstream trombonist playing a low Bb.
And a high Bb two octaves above.
Again, it's much easier to observe where the air is striking inside the mouthpiece in person, but you can probably get an idea that as this player plays higher the air stream gets blown even further upward. These two players are typical for almost all brass players in that their basic blowing category (upstream or downstream) do not change directions, but the specific angle that they are blowing does change to striking closer to the shank the lower the pitch and closer to the rim the higher they play. The majority of players do not blow upstream for one register and downstream for another.
However, there are some players who flip the direction of the air stream as you suggest, Hans, but these players typically have a noticeable change that you can both see and hear when they flip the air stream direction. At the point where they flip air stream direction their lips fight for predominance inside the mouthpiece and there is usually a tendency to crack the notes right there. The tone will also usually be noticeably different when they change directions. In Lloyd Leno's film, Lip Vibration of Trombone Embouchures he shows one player who does this. Doug Elliott put together a film called The Brass Player's Embouchure where he showed a tubist who switched back and forth between upstream and downstream a couple of different times in his range. I've worked with a couple of students who had these issues and documented one tubist, including putting together a video presentation of our initial embouchure consultation here.
As I mentioned earlier, I don't find these situations of flipping the direction of the air stream to be typical and even though some players get pretty good at disguising their air stream direction change (sometimes even from themselves), there are almost always flaws in their playing at these points and they seem to do better if they can move their placement higher or lower on the lips to more completely adopt either an upstream or downstream embouchure for their entire range. These players almost always are placing the mouthpiece too close to half and half on the lips and because of this I believe need to move their placement so one lip predominates always.
The other embouchure characteristic that I feel is important to understand is the phenomena that Reinhardt called a "pivot" and Doug Elliott calls an "embouchure motion." Both terms refer to the tendency for players to push their mouthpiece and lips together as a single unit up and down along the teeth and gums to change registers. The actual placement of the mouthpiece on the lips doesn't change, just the relationship of the mouthpiece and lips to their position on the teeth and gums underneath. Some players will push up to ascend while other players will pull down to ascend. If you look closely at the photographs above you'll see that the downstream player has pushed his mouthpiece and lips up closer to the nose for the high B flat. In contrast, the upstream player has pulled his mouthpiece and lips down along towards the chin for the high Bb.
While the general direction of a player's embouchure motion is always up or down, many players have a "track" of their embouchure motion that has some side to side motion as well. So a player might push up and to the right to ascend and pull down and to the left to descend. Some players will also reverse the direction of their embouchure motion at a certain point in their range. Much like flipping the direction of the air stream, this typically results in some issues and most players appear to do better if they can keep their embouchure motion moving in a straight line and consistent. I've put together a video presentation on this phenomena here. It's much easier to understand what I'm referring to by watching the video there.
Jaw position and horn angle work in conjunction with the embouchure motion, but are not necessarily going to be the same for all players. Some players tend to work better if they bring their bell up to ascend while others do better if they bring their bell down. Much like the embouchure motion, there are plenty of examples of side to side jaw motion and horn angle changes while changing registers as well.
While upstream players will almost always pull down to ascend and push up to descend, downstream players may do the same or the reverse. Whether a downstream player pushes up to ascend or pulls down to ascend correlates with how much upper lip is placed inside the mouthpiece. Players who push up to ascend will typically place the mouthpiece in such a way that there is around 75% to 90% upper lip inside to lower lip. In contrast, downstream players who pull down to ascend typically place with just over 50% to 75% upper lip inside the mouthpiece.
Using these two characteristics (air stream direction and direction of the embouchure motion) it's possible to classify embouchures into three basic types. Donald Reinhardt went into even more detail, defining embouchure types also according to the player's jaw position while playing and while at rest, but Doug Elliott simplified them into the three basic types I prefer to use. The type that is correct for the individual is, I believe, based on the player's anatomy and not something that they choose to adopt or can practice to make work. One type will usually work best for a given player and I recommend that players try to discover which type is correct and use that type for their whole range.
Very High Placement Type - These players tend to place the mouthpiece with about 75% to 90% upper lip inside and are downstream. They push their mouthpiece and lips together up to ascend and pull down to descend. These players usually have a jaw position where the teeth are more or less aligned and a horn angle that is close to straight out.
Medium High Placement Type - There players tend to place the mouthpiece with just over 50% to 75% upper lip inside and are downstream. They pull their mouthpiece and lips together down to ascend and push up to descend. These players usually have a jaw position where the teeth are slightly receded and a horn angle where the bell is pointed slightly down. Exceptions to this jaw position and horn angle do exist. Because mouthpiece placement alone isn't sufficient to tell if a player is a "Very High Placement" type or "Medium High Placement" type, the player's embouchure type is determined by the direction of the embouchure motion if the player is downstream.
Low Placement Type - This type is less common than the other types. They place the mouthpiece with less than 50% upper lip inside. Because the lower lip predominates, these players are upstream. They will pull the mouthpiece and lips down to ascend and push up to descend. Horn angle is most commonly straight out with teeth aligned, but some have a receded jaw position and lowered horn angle.
I've put together a simple summary of these basic embouchure types here and a more detailed discussion of them here.
While the basic embouchure characteristics I've described above have been independently confirmed by a number of teachers and researchers, very few people tend to put them together and consider them when determining pedagogy, research questions, or treatment programs for brass players who have injured themselves or having serious playing issues. Assuming that you feel my above descriptions are accurate (and I always recommend that everyone take the time to confirm that for themselves, don't take my word for it), then I think these basic embouchure types are important variables to consider.
For example, if you're studying brass embouchures using stroboscopic video, how does the pattern of lip vibrations differ between the three basic types? Lloyd Leno's film shows that both lips don't vibrate with equal intensity, the predominant lip vibrates more than the other lip. For downstream players the upper lip is more active while the lower lip is less so while the reverse is true for upstream players. It would be interesting to see if there is any major difference between the "Very High Placement" and "Medium High Placement" types, for example. Do players of different types use their embouchure muscles differently or do they all essentially do the muscular work in the same area? Are players who flip the direction of the air stream or change direction of their embouchure motion more prone to embouchure problems and injury than players who don't?
If you're studying embouchure injury and dysfunction I would think that it is important to consider how these brass embouchure types differ in function, which are prone to specific injuries or issues, and how they tend to respond to particular treatment programs and practice approaches. Since many players and teachers are ignorant of embouchure function and embouchure types, many teachers (at least here in the U.S.) tend to teach all their students to play the same way they do. Imagine an upstream student (a less common embouchure type) who is instructed to place the mouthpiece like a downstream player. This describes my own situation through most of my music study and I had a lot of technique issues until I took my first lesson with Doug Elliott, who pointed out that I should have been playing upstream the whole time. This is a fairly common situation for upstream players. A lot of them are told their embouchure is wrong because their teachers happen to be downstream players and find that when the teacher tries to adopt an upstream embouchure it just won't work. The teacher then makes the erroneous assumption that because it doesn't work for them it must be wrong for everyone.
Regarding injuries and serious embouchure dysfunction, I am not a medical professional and not qualified to offer medical advice. One of my pet peeves is the number of musicians who purport to diagnose and treat "embouchure dystonia" or "embouchure overuse syndrome." They may actually be providing some sound advice, but I think us musicians should leave the medical diagnosis and treatment to the medical professionals and speak purely with regards to embouchure form and function.
Speaking of embouchure form and function/dysfunction, one thing I've observed is that for players who feel they have embouchure dystonia or embouchure overuse syndrome there is almost always some sort of type switching or other deviation in their basic embouchure formation going on. For example, it's very common for players who have an incontrollable tremor to be either changing the direction of their embouchure motion or have an embouchure formation that is too loose or too open in general. I studied one player who had been diagnosed (by a musician, so I take that diagnosis with a grain of salt) with embouchure dystonia who was probably an upstream player who had been instructed to play as a downstream player before he began to develop problems. Players I've observed either in person or on video who have recovered from serious embouchure dysfunction always have made corrections in their embouchure formation and/or adopted a single embouchure type, whether or not they were conscious of those changes. I've put together a presentation of this here.
Regarding some other resources that address these things, I'm afraid that in the U.S. at least there still isn't a large amount of people who take an interest in studying brass embouchures, largely thanks to the pedagogical approach of Arnold Jacobs. Jacobs was a very charismatic and influential brass teacher who played tuba with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. His approach is sometimes called "song and wind" because he felt that musical expression (the song) was paramount and after that the breathing (wind). His idea was that if a student learned to play through expression and with good breathing that all other issues, including the embouchure, would work themselves out. As an aside, I've noticed that many of the players who get diagnosed with serious embouchure dysfunction or have injuries learned with this approach and because they are ignorant of their embouchure form and function aren't able to figure out how to fix minor issues that then become major down the road.
Of those authors who do take an interest in brass embouchures and have written extensively about them, most largely are speculating and describing how they think they play and assume that that must be correct for all players. As a rule, us musicians don't have much of a background in research methodology and how to conduct good science, so many of the books that purport to be scientific really aren't. That said, there are a number of things out there that may be of interest to you. Here's an annotated list of some things I'm familiar with, in no particular order.
The Encyclopedia of the Pivot System by Donald S. Reinhardt - This is Reinhardt's question/answer book that includes extensive information about brass embouchure types. Reinhardt was the first brass teacher I'm aware of to make note of the differences between brass embouchure types and make them an important consideration of his pedagogy. The book is not well written for learning about his approach on your own, he intended it to be something that students of his would use in conjunction with lessons, not as a text where one could learn on your own about it.
Broken Embouchures by Lucinda Lewis - I don't endorse this book or her methods because I feel her "research" consists entirely of collecting anecdotes from players who happen to contact her with troubles and so she has a self-selecting biased sample. She coined the term "embouchure overuse syndrome" and feels that over 90% of all embouchure problems can be traced to this condition (which she defines as virtually any embouchure issue you might come across). She is a horn player, not a medical professional. All that said, some of her advice is sound and I've heard from some players who felt reading this book was valuable. I include it here because she is someone that might be of interest to you and she seems to be willing to answer questions if you contact her. Here web site is here. Make your own judgements after reading up on her ideas. She doesn't consider embouchure types at all.
A photographic study of 40 virtuoso horn players' embouchures by Philip Farkas. Farkas wrote a book about 10 years before this one where he described brass embouchures in an inaccurate manner. Later, he published this book where he shows photographs of horn players buzzing into a rim visualizer and notes upstream and downstream embouchures. Rim visualizers aren't as accurate a look as a transparent mouthpiece, but it does offer an independent confirmation of the basic categories of air stream direction.
A stroboscopic study of lip vibrations in a trombone by Copley, D.C. & Strong, W.J. - This was published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America in 1996. If I recall correctly they only studied a single player, who happened to be a downstream trombonist. They noted the lip that was more active with this player was the upper lip.
The mouthpiece forces used during trombone performances by J. Froelich - He wrote this article, published in the International Trombone Association Journal, I think based on his dissertation research. He noted that players used both shear (horizontal) forces and direct (vertical) forces during playing. From what I can tell, the horizontal force he found were players using more pressure to play louder and/or higher and the vertical forces confirm the up and down embouchure motion is used.
A scientific characterization of trumpet mouthpiece forces in the context of pedagogical brass literature by J. Ford - This is Ford's dissertation where he looked at the amount of force a trumpet player used with the mouthpiece on the lips.
Anterior superior alveolar neuropathy: An occupational neuropathy of the embouchure by Steven Frucht - Frucht is a doctor who is noted for helping brass players with embouchure injuries.
A photographic study of twelve professional trumpet embouchures while playing from the low to the extreme upper register by D. R. Gibson - This is Gibson's dissertation. He has photographs of trumpet players buzzing into a rim visualizer. Another independent confirmation of brass embouchure air stream direction.
Orbicularis oris muscle injury in brass players by Papsin, Maaske, and McGrail - An article published in the journal Laryngoscope about brass player's injuries to the orbicularis oris.
An analysis, clarification, and revaluation of Donald Reinhardt’s pivot system for brass instruments by D. R. Turnbull - This is Turnbull's dissertation which describes Reinhardt's embouchure types and shows photographs with examples of them. It's a good resource for learning about Reinhardt's embouchure types and would help make reading The Encyclopedia of the Pivot System easier to follow.
A stroboscopic analysis of lip function by Robert Weast - Another study that appears to have only looked at downstream embouchures. He notes the upper lip being more active than the lower lip.
Embouchure Dystonia: Portait of a Task-Specific Cranial Dystonia by Steven Frucht - This one is from the journal Movement Disorders. A discussion of case studies.
Error monitoring is altered in musician's dystonia: evidence from ERP-based studies by Strübing, Ruiz, Jabushc, and Alternüller - From the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. The paper covers their experiment which suggests that musicians with dystonia have degraded neural activity in the specific executive functions that are used to monitor sensorimotor performance.
The Effect of Focal Task-Specific Embouchure Dystonia upon Brass Musicians: A Literature Review and Case Study by Dennis AsKew - This is Askew's dissertation. It's mostly a review of the literature and really doesn't discuss embouchure form and function much, but is mostly a musician's interpretation of the medical literature on the topic. If I recall correctly AsKew suffered from what was diagnosed as dystonia and returned to playing with the help of Jan Kagarice (more on her below).
The natural history of embouchure dystonia by Frucht, Fahn, Greene, et al. - In the journal Movement Disorders. Discussion of the patterns of players who develop embouchure dystonia.
Specific orofacial problems experienced by musicians by Yeo, Pham, Baker, and Porter - From the Australian Dental Journal, this article covers woodwinds and brass musician injuries and problems.
The Role of Massage Therapy in the Treatment of Musicians with Task-Specific Focal Dystonia by Jackson and Jackson - A paper written by some massage therapy students and later published in the Journal of Soft Tissue Manipulations.
One thing that I notice in the above literature is that medical professionals and researchers are too unfamiliar with embouchure form and function to put the players they're studying into the context of embouchure types. Most musicians also don't seem to be very aware of the details either and I suspect that many of the issues that get diagnosed as embouchure dystonia or embouchure overuse syndrome are players who are just switching between types. Like lifting heavy objects with your back instead of your legs, you can get away with it for a while but it eventually catches up to you. That's my hypothesis, at least, but since I haven't subjected that to an honest test I can't state objectively that this is the case. It's possible that the type switching I see is a symptom, not the cause, of a neurological condition or physical issue.
Two other individuals that you may have heard about that have reputations for helping players with embouchure dystonia are Jan Kagarice at University of North Texas and Joaquin Fabra, who lives in Spain I think. I can't comment on the medical validity of their approach, and I don't necessarily agree with what I've heard of their approach with regards to how embouchures actually function. Still, I think it's important to consider other approaches, particularly ones that contradict my own idea, and see if there's something worth exploring.
I highly recommend both Doug Elliott, who can be contacted through his mouthpiece website here, and Dave Sheetz, who's web site is here. Both understand brass embouchure types very well and make use of them in their teaching. Both also have a history of working with players who are having problems and helping them fix their issues.
Again, thank you for your interest in my studies of brass embouchures and for your willingness to share your own work. I'm always willing to explore different approaches and ideas on this topic and am constantly trying to learn more when I can. Please do keep in touch and keep me informed when you have work that I can post about on my web site. It's not an incredibly popular site, but if I can help get more people interested in studying brass embouchures and help people get in touch with others of similar interest I would like to do so.
Reactions on the embouchure reminder 3(lipposter).Via David Wilking
Read in Online Trombone Journal at june 16th 2013
WITH THE DRAWING FROM HANS A AS THE ANSWER )
PLAY HIGH DOWNSTREAMING
Doug Elliot says about this subject :
Use embouchure motion to place the mouthpiece most on the upper lip.
Hans answer is: Thats not logical because of automaticly :
1.LOWER JAW FALLS DOWN AND RETRACTS
4.TONGUE MOVES BACKWARD
5.LESS TENSE OF IMPORTANT MUSCLES LIKE Orbicularis oris, buccinator, risorius, mentalis,depressors of the lower lip a.s.o.
But: for playing high you need more pressure in lungs, throat, mouth and mouthpiece.
The consequences of downstreaming are opposite your goals..to get more pressure.
DRAWING B UPSTREAMING
Doug Elliot says about this subject :
Use embouchure motion to place the mouthpiece on the lower lip mostly.
Hans answers with drawing B : Thats not logical because of:
1.LOWER JAW RISES AND MOVES FORWARD( caused by Masseter, Temporalis, Mm.Pterygoïdeï)
2.MOUTHCAVITY GETS NARROWER
3.THROATCAVITY NARROWS TOO
4.TONGUE MOVES FORWARD AND FLATTENS(like speaking ii,aa,ee etc)
5.MORE TENSE OF THE EMBOUCHURE MUSCLES, MORE BEATH SUPPORT A.S.O.
All measures which happens automaticly along the neurophysiological patterns.
The consequences of upstreaming are opposite your goals… to get less pressure.
My conclusion is: There are many many fantastic players who use Doug Elliot /Wilkin methode but it is a combination of artificial movements.They have to combine the different streammethods with the automaticly occurring movements to get the right airpressure.
And thats what I mean with my upstreaming etc etc.B 6,7 and 8. - Hans Boschma
Upstreamen benadrukt en activeert de embouchurestructuren die het hoger spelen en hoog spelen verzorgen.
In de tekening staan er dan Up straight- en downstreamillustraties bij. Dat kan verwarrend werken, daarom even een kleine aanwijzing voor jou, mocht men jou daarmee confronteren, ik heb het Wilkin bv uitgelegd omdat ik nu begrijp dat zij de functionele neuroanatomie niet begrijpen,dat het omhoog richten van d eluchtstraal in het mondstuk veelal gepaard gaat met een zeer gering neerwaartse pivotering.."horn angle with the floor is getting something less)"
Omgekeerd zal het downstreamen van de luchtstraal, vaak nodig bij het lager gaan spelen of een sprong maken naar de laagte vaak gepaard gaan aan het opwaarts pivoteren van het instrument :"Horn angle with the groundis often getting bigger". Zie ook F.
Dus upstreamen geeft geringe pivotering downward
Downstreamen geeft een lichte pivotering upward.
Zie hier de Prezi presentatie
Shifting is in ons jargon het glijdend verplaatsen /verschuiven van het mondstuk over de embouchure,
:omhoog richting neus bij het lager spelen, om onder andere de bovenlip langer te maken
Op zich is dat niet voldoende omdat alle andere maatregelen om de druk op te voeren, worden ingeschakeld.
:omlaag om de bovenlip korter te maken voor het hoger spelen.
Op zich is dat niet voldoende omdat alle maatregelen om met lagere drukken te spelen moeten worden ingeschakeld.
In de Amerikaanse brass slang noemt men shifting embouchure motion.
Hun theorie is dan niet hetzelfde omdat zij aannemen dat het mondstuk zich samen met de onderliggende lipstructuren over de tanden, tandvlees en lippen bewegen.
Op de keper beschouwd: de lippen en hun spanning en vorm passen zich aan bij elke verandering van toonhoogte en dynamiek.
Ik ga even uit van jou als brass teacher..dirigent en zelf prof player.
A en B is het gemiddelde embouchure, zoals het er ideaal gezien, eruit zou moeten zien.In jouw praktijk kun je met een rim(euphonium model naast TP model ,het embouchure van je pupil vergelijken. De mond moet open bij het blazen en veel leerlingen spelen met bv C2 en/of C5.
Verder zie je in B ook nog wat de mond doet als de blazer op een te wijd of te nauw mondstuk speelt.Dus wat doen de lippen, hoe groot is het gat etc.
Op B 6,7 en 8 staat wat er kan gebeuren als iemand blaast met upstreamen, straight streamen of downstreamen.Ik bedoel daarmee :hoe richt de blazer de luchtstroom in het mondstuk:omhoog, recht naar voren of omlaag. Als hij/zij prima speelt hoef je niks te doen.
Overigens bij upstreamen zal de leadpipe iets omlaag wijzen, en bij downstreamen omhoog.O.a. om de bovenlip vaster te zetten of juist langer te maken zoals bij laag spel.
Upstreamen kun je gebruiken om de stemming op te drijven of als hulpmiddel om een sprong te maken omhoog en bij downsstreamen idem omlaag.Buj straightstreamen, wat ikzelf gebruik verandert er niks.
C:meest voorkomende afwijkingen van het gemiddelde en dat geldt ook voor D.Je kunt dan zien waarom bv iemand pijn krijgt, doof gevoel, slechte toon, de hoogte of laagte niet in kan etc.De rim bevestigt je verhaal en een goed werkende stroboscoop helemaal.
E= de inclinatiehoek van je snijtanden die een rol speelt bij de toonvorming.Dit staat in nauwe relatie met de lipspanning.
Hoe sterker de mondkringspier hoe minder invloed van de snijtanden op de toon.
F=Pivoteren of niet , dat is een heel persoonlijk iets. Gaat dan vooral om het lage blazen waarbij de beker omhoog wordt gericht of liever de leadpipe.
Onmisbaar in de muziekschool.
- Hans Boschma
thank you very much for the information.
Now I'm beginning to understand the poster. But I will need some time more of meditation to completely understand it and many days of musicians observation to incorporate to my approach to musician's medical problems.
I must confess that, at first look, it has been impossible for me to understand it. Know I see the poster is great. It is not a poster, it is a complete manual. Congratulations!!!
I know you are an impresive (unique) multi-brass player. I never have seen you playing but I've heard your recordings. They are incredible. Your web site also demonstrates your interest and huge knowledge about brass playing and its physical and physiological implications.
This is why your conclusions must be taken strongly in consideration.
But I have some questions:
This embouchure mechanics is based mainly on your personal expertise or also checking other brass players with the stroboscope? How many players you have tested?
You have told me in a past e-mail when we discussed the embouchure shifting:
"Their can be variations with some players. Some of them use te reversed mode, they use the upper lip as the lower lip a.s.o.That's perhaps 50 %??"
5 % PERHAPS. jAUME SORRY
About 50% of people doing the reverse is not just "some players". How you can make a "rule" when near half of the players do not follow the rule?
I'm not questioning your work, I'm just trying to understand it and learn about this topic. And, unfortunately, it is not easy to find people like you from which one can learn.
And last, how your stroboscopic device finally works? How have you solved the problem of the open mouthpiece?
Thank you very much,
Jaume Rosset i Llobet
Institut de Fisiologia i Medicina de l'Art
thank you very much for sending me this magnific poster. What a great job!!! Congratulations.
Is this poster for clinical uses or for teaching?
I've tried to completely understand the info but there are many codes or abbreviations that I cannot understand. Some of them are obvious but others not.
Can you give me the meaning of all the abbreviations or acronyms used in the poster, please?
Jaume Rosset i Llobet
Institut de Fisiologia i Medicina de l'Art