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Accessing Excerpts

Whether your teacher suggests a particular repertoire for lessons or you plan on auditioning for a school or festival, you can always expect to find excerpts on the list. The standards are, well, standard issue. The question then becomes, if it is not in the Stadio book (which only has short selections to begin with) where can you easily find these pieces?

I am fortunate to be located literally walking distance from one of the largest music resources in the USA, Sibley Library, here at Eastman School of Music. Trust me I spend hours upon hours scouring the shelves for music! However, since not everyone has this opportunity (and eventually I won't either), I'm always looking for new resources for both myself and my students.

One resource that is a must for the bassoonist's tool bag is this amazing site, The Orchestra Bassoon,

The Orchestral Bassoon is a digital resource for bassoonists that focuses on the history, performance, and pedagogy of the instrument's most prominent orchestral excerpts. YEAH!!!!

The site is the final research project of Brett Van Gansbeke, an Instructor of Bassoon at the University of St. Thomas in downtown Houston and represents the culmination of three years of research and design.

The best part, in my opinion, is not only the selections he includes (and is constantly updating), but the posting of multiple recording samples. For instance, under Berlioz's Symphony Fantastique you can find 10 recording samples, including 1990 Berliner Philharmoniker, 1982 Cleveland Orchestra, 1963 London Symphony Orchestra, and a 1961 Philadelphia Orchestra. Nothing is more intriguing than hearing the same piece professionally performed in such starkly different ways and styles.

So, when you are in need of an excerpt, CHECK IT OUT!



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