i play the oboe and i think i might be able to play this but not as well as these guys because ive only been playin 5 months tops

YouTube comments are often hysterical. This person was writing in response to this glorious music. I usually don’t read the comments. But sometimes something like this catches my eye and I just have to laugh.

But … the video itself … well … you just have to hear it. How I would love to play Bach again! (But I’m not sure I’d want to deal with this particular work; what the oboes have to do is pretty darn difficult.) From the same poster you can hear and see the d’amore solo—well, okay, there’s a voice there too, go figure. I haven’t played d’amore in more than 20 years. I played the B Minor Mass so long ago (probably before I had children!) and it was one of the few concerts that I was completely satisfied with (when it comes to my own playing). The Maestro even played the recording for me and I was still happy. Of course that was then and this is now. Who knows what I’d think these days, and I have no access to a recording. Ah well. I’ll hang on to the positive memory. Sometimes that’s better, eh?


  1. Arjun Muralidharan

    Dude, that was like the longest note I’ve ever heard… I was out of breath myself when listening to it!

    It does sound “simple” in the sense that there aren’t many notes involved, because common belief propogates fast passages to be the technically difficult ones – this is especially propelled by the guitar, where slow playing is fairly easy compared to fast playing (because you have to coordinate both hands very precisely to achieve proper tone).

    Why is it you stopped playing Bach? What are you playing now, besides your teaching profession? any solo projects or orchestras?

  2. Hmm … you just called an old (51) mom/wife/oboist a “dude”! 😉

    As I frequently tell my students, fast and loud can be quite easy sometimes. Slow and pianissimo is, on the oboe, difficult. My guess is that the oboists did all stagger breathing on that movement. The intonation is the much more challenging thing on that number.

    I play in our local symphony orchestra and opera companies. In addition I freelance. Bach is rarely done by large symphony orchestras; it is more commonly done by chamber groups or groups that specialize in Baroque music.