Oboe Extravaganza – Benslow 4-6 April 2018

My oboe weekend at Benslow has now been taking place for about 14 years and for the last 8 or so years it has been in May.

This year there will be a second Oboe Extravaganza in the weekend of November 9-11. This new, autumn version has been billed as “Growing confidence”. Material for this will be concentrating on fundamentals of technique, coordination and confident tone production.

In our upcoming May course essential basics will be covered but additionally I am proposing to use specific repertoire to help focus technical “facility” as well as introducing you to 2 new study/scale books by the German oboist, Andreas Mendel. I have recently made for my students a “Mini Gillet”. This is a very abbreviated version of the first 14 famously difficult and long studies. I have abbreviated them greatly to appear less intimidating. I and my students are finding this mini book fun, helpful and even exciting!

The repertoire will include movements from Telemann’s Methodical sonatas. There are 12 of these in total and I will be concentrating on the movements in numbers 1, 11 and 12 where Telemann wrote out elaborately “ornamented” versions or his slow movements. I find these useful for “technical facility”, as the delightful ornaments require a technical freedom/facility even though the overall tempo is slow. Additionally, they are helpful in their original pedagogical aim of teaching us about how we can approach making our own baroque ornaments.

I will also bring with me the Orientale of Hamilton Harty which I find a most satisfying piece that also requires technical facility and beautiful, rich tone production.

We will have a most wonderful pianist, Karen Kingsley, to accompany your own repertoire in our informal “masterclass” that will be on Saturday evening and Sunday.

For ensembles I will bring some beautifully composed rounds by the likes of Mozart, together with ensembles for groups of oboes.

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