13. June 2009 · Comments Off on BQOD & Reminders · Categories: BQOD

A few weeks ago, I was cleaning my oboe with a cloth. that is pulled through the oboe. As the oboe becomes thinner nearer to the top, problems may occur when a knot or some unforeseen increase in thickness of the cloth draws closer to this area. To my distress, a knot had in fact knotted itself (OR BEEN KNOTTED?) in my oboe cloth!

This is why I use a soft cotton swab rather than the silk pull through swabs that can easily knot. Yes, I have to take my instrument apart to swab, but I’ve never had to deal with a stuck cotton swab! That just doesn’t happen. Or at least has never happened to me.

If you insist on using a silk swab, be sure it isn’t knotted when you drop it down the oboe. Once it falls through to the end (top) of the oboe, bring your oboe to an upright position and pull it through upwards rather than downwards. This way it doesn’t bunch up on itself.

Another event occurred in windsymph this morning where i looked in my reed case and discovered several black-green fronds of mould sprouting furrily from my reeds.

Brush your teeth. Make sure your reeds dry out. That’s about all you can do. Sometimes they still mold for some reason. Must be the climate …?

I do have one big complaint about audiences in all countries, and that is their artificial restraint from applause between movements of a concerto or symphony. Of course applause should be spontaneous, not dutiful, but often it is the most natural thing to applaud between movements.

-Pierre Monteux

Terry Teachout has written about applause for the Wall Street Journal. He, too, thinks we can lighten up about the whole applause issue, suggesting opera and ballet goers could teach others a thing or two. He also agrees with me (so he must be right!) that there are those times that silence should come first. When a work has torn at your guts, and ends in a hush, it doesn’t even feel right to jump in with loud clapping until you’ve managed to bask in the ahhh of it all.