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Major Edition English Version

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Minor Edition English Version

The Technical Basics of
Oboe Playing

Major and Minor editions
Author: Andreas Mendel

“Effective and Systematic Exercises for Technical Improvement.”

These two books are a collection of tried and tested exercises some designed to improve fluency and consistency, alternating with those that train mechanical aspects that encourage precise finger movements.
They are in two well-presented volumes, one for major keys and one for minor.
The scale exercises are similar to those found in many “Method” and Technique” books from the past including those by Albert Andraud, Louis Bleuzet, Fernand Gillet, A. M. R. Barrett and Evelyn Barbirolli.

There are warm up exercises, finger co-ordination both right and left hand, exercises for intonation legato and airflow. Also exercises by named artists. There is for example a lovely one by Albrecht Mayer for sound and legato; another is a pure staccato fingering exercise from Maurice Bourgue. This has been handed down verbally at the Paris Conservatoire and never written down before and ostensibly from Louis Bleuzet.

These books are a treasure trove of helpful hints and articles. I particularly like the article on vibrato by Matthias Baecker with a hint of controversy built in - depending on your point of view.

I would certainly recommend these volumes for players who really want to improve the technical and tonal aspects of their playing. Working at these rudiments with even a small degree of diligence will make an enormous improvement for the time spent. They are a concentrated form of workout that will reap huge dividends efficiently and interestingly.
My only real criticism is that the binding may not last as well as a modern ring-bound system. I have loved working with them and really feel the benefits. I should have done this years ago!

The exercises are listed as follows:

1 Scales: possible variations, 5-note scale, scale with auxiliary note
2 Thirds: repeated, flowing, with an auxiliary note
3 Fourths: repeated, flowing, with an auxiliary note
4 Staccato
5 Arpeggios: arpeggios with variations

There are also several specific exercises:
1 Warm up
2 Exercises for a clean and controlled response (by Andrea Glaser)
3 Staccato (by Maurice Bourgue)
4 Arpeggios (by Emanuel Abbühl)

The Author Andreas Mendel is the principal oboist in the Bruckner Orchestra in Linz.
The Minor Edition contains 96 pages. The Major Edition 88 pages
In German and with excellent English translations. ISBN: 979-0-9000086-0-2

The price is about £20 for each volume. It is on sale at Howarth of London amongst other outlets.

Visit his website to purchase: