Today I played for the UCSC orchestra, since we are low on oboes these days on campus. I got to the hall early so I could check out reeds; my faculty recital is tomorrow. I found a reed that felt extremely comfortable, and I ran a few licks of the Poulenc, Françaix and Ibert. Yay for a good reed!

I used it on the second oboe part of Dvorak’s New World and all was well.

But you know how the story goes, right?

In the second half I was on the only oboe part while Sara, my student, played English horn. Things were feeling peachy until the FINAL entrance. Horrors. Double horrors! The reed stopped working. Just. Totally. Stopped.

So now I’m back to square one in the reed department, which means getting to the hall super early tomorrow and a whole heck of a lot of fretting prior to that.

Have I mentioned that I hate oboe reeds? 🙁

Oh … but Sara Hancock, my oboe student at UCSC, played wonderfully at the concert. Beautiful English horn and oboe solos. So yay for you, Sara! Great job!

I know some people “PFR” (pray for rain). I “PFR” too, but you KNOW what I’m talkin’ about!


  1. Don’t you just hate it when that happens?!  I certainly will do my best to send good reed vibes your way, in time for your recital.  Speaking of rain (which we’re getting a lot of here in the Pacific Northwest these days), when the humidity changes, sometimes I find that a reed I had written off earlier gains new life, with a few well-placed scrapes.  It’s worth a try.

  2. Patricia Mitchell

    Yes, I DO hate it. But I’m paying the price for not putting enough working reeds together. (grumble)

    I am now off to go through ALL my old reeds. Surely I’ll find a few that would like to cooperate with me?!