15. October 2005 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

I found an article by Harold C. Schoenberg about musicians via the internet archive wayback machine. (What would I do without that handy site?!) Here’s a quote that I am fairly sure will make you want to go there too:

Oboe players, says Dickson, are “untouchables”, and if they are less troublesome than cellists, it is only because there are fewer of them. Oboists are the unhappiest of musicians, constantly complaining. “They know nothing about music. They don’t have time to learn. Most of their time is spent on shaving their double reeds.” (Get ready to duck, Dickson!) For some reason, Dickson continues, all first oboists are gangsters. They are “tough, irascible, double-reed roosters, feared by their colleagues and most conductors.” Flutists are different. They are the best adjusted citizens of a symphony orchestra – no reed troubles, no mouthpiece troubles. Clarinetists, however, are “the classic cry-babies of the orchestra,” and constantly think they are being persecuted. Bassoonists – double-reed players, like oboists – are as sweet as the oboists are sour. Why, Dickson doesn’t know; but there it is.

Now I have to say this isn’t the way I’ve seen it. Oboists … well … we are a difficult bunch, to be sure. But so much about this paragraph is so wrong from all I’ve experienced. Unfortunately I can’t tell you what I really think (and know!) because 1) I might start getting hate mail and 2) it wouldn’t be professional.

Ah well.

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