4 Articulation Myths Busted!

Clarinet on Music which requires articulation

Let's debunk some common myths surrounding articulation!

❌Myth: To gain speed you have to move the tongue faster. For this it has more to do with efficiency of movement! Assess if you are moving your tongue with as little effort and tension as possible. Make sure that you are not making it harder than it needs to be with too many extra steps involved. And always remember to have good air support!

❌Myth: The air doesn’t stop when you articulate. Remember there is a difference between air pressure and air flow. While the air pressure won’t stop, if you are using your tongue to stop the reed to create a staccato articulation, you are stopping the air flow. Pressure remains, but flow stops.

❌Myth: You have to have the tip of the tongue go to the tip of the reed only. Everyone is different so what works for one person, might not work for you. Experiment and find what works best for you to create the articulation the music is asking for. It might mean there is a little variation here, within reason. Remember, it is about ease and creating the best sound you can!

❌Myth: You can fix articulation quickly. Building and maintaining your articulation foundation takes time and patience. Work slowly to fix anything that might be causing you problems and realize it is a lifelong, ever-evolving process! You may fall into bad habits, so just be conscientious when you are practicing and give yourself compassion if you are making mistakes.

So what's next? Download the Articulation Builder or 4 Exercises for  Better Articulation at these links and try them out to improve your articulation practice today!

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Co-directed by us, professional clarinetists Ixi Chen and Dr. Tiffany Valvo, the Digital Clarinet Academy has become the most trusted place to take your clarinet skills to the next level with world-class digital content and virtual training. Welcome to our virtual home!