27

An electric violin is very quiet. Some with chambered bodies are loud enough to be heard by other people in the same room; some (the "skeleton" type) are only just loud enough for the player to hear in a quiet room. Unlike many other electric instruments, there is no difference in technique between an electric and a "normal" violin. The electric violin also ...


19

The best way to avoid disturbing the neighbors is to talk to them first! In my experience, most neighbors are fine with a little muffled noise at reasonable hours. An interior room with no walls adjacent to the neighbors also helps a ton. It's not a good idea to always practice very quietly or timidly; you should do the bulk of your practicing at a normal, ...


18

Musical instruments are classified by the way the sound is produced. The material is immaterial and brass and woodwind instruments can both be made from metal, plastic or wood. Woodwind instruments are those where you blow across an opening (flute), or use a single reed (sax, clarinet), or double reed (oboe, bassoon). I think pipe organs are in this class ...


17

NO, writing a tenor-recorder part for an oboist would be about as helpful as me giving you a sandwich to breath underwater. Each instrument responds very differently throughout their range, and while the core fingering principles may be similar (as with saxophone, flute, clarinet, and bassoon as well), each instrument has its own nuances. Fingering wise, ...


16

You begin by listening to individual instruments, to learn what they sound like, and the variations in their sound. Solo pieces, quartets, etc. are one way to do this. Searching Youtube for instrument tutorials is another. I got my start in instrument recognition with Piccolo, Saxo et Compagnie when I was about 3 years old. Then try recognizing instruments ...


14

There are several compositions written in purpose to present the orchestra, the instrument sections and the single instruments to the audience and especially for children like Peter and the wolf (Sergej Prokofiev) and The young persons guide to the orchestra (Benjamin Britten). You may listen to any youtube videos, watching or only listening. a) camera ...


13

Get an idea, how each instrument sounds separately (as covered in other answers) Train to read scores of ensembles with increasing number of instruments while listening. For orchestra pieces like symphonies start with smaller setting like Haydn. (Mahler, Berlioz, Wagner are a league above). Pieces with a singer are helpful (e.g. cantatatas and oratorios), ...


12

A harp can be pretty quiet. Do not choose bagpipes; they're loud enough to cover up a harp even when the pipes are not playing.


11

As has been said so many times - get a good teacher - at least for a while. I believe anyone can learn to play an instrument by themselves - if they live long enough !! A teacher will guide you to a suitable sax, be it soprano, alto tenor or baritone (quite expensive). Watching videos and using tutor books is good, but they won't answer a question you ...


11

On the assumption that if you added up the note values in the bar concerned, and they added up correctly WITHOUT the 'little notes', they will probably be grace notes. They have no value of their own, and are played sort of crushed in just before the main note that follows. You should not blow separately, but play the little note almost like it was a mistake,...


10

All instruments are equally difficult for different reasons. You can't escape by choosing an "easy" instrument because there are none. All pitches from all instruments have overtones. It is impossible not to use an overtone as they are inherent in the physical properties of vibration that actuate the pitch. It is precisely the reliance on the ear to ...


10

In this admittedly limited study, they record one oboist using more than double (over 110 cm H2O) the blowing pressure to play fortissimo compared to two different clarinetists (both around 50 cm H2O), also playing fortissimo. The other oboist in the study blew a peak pressure of about 80 cm H2O for fortissimo playing. A better graphical comparison is ...


10

Every wind instrument has a theoretically infinite range, which is only limited by the player's skill. The first octave is the fundamental, and then all higher notes are played as overtones of that first octave. The second octave is by far the most stable, it's just the entire first octave again but on the second harmonic. The third octave could ...


10

Have you considered an electronic string instrument? Those are very quiet, and rely on amplification for the majority of their volume. It may be out of your price range, but it might be possible to find something on the used market that might fit your budget.


8

Well, "non-reed" eliminates most of the woodwind family, leaving only the flute family. Recorder is pretty easy. There's a reason it's the instrument of choice for elementary school music programs. It takes zero embouchure (mouth position/strength) and almost no air support--you pretty much just blow into it gently and it works. Other recorder-like ...


8

To answer part of your question, concerning why keyed brass instruments don't work out: The "puckered lips" which produce the note in a brass instrument create a sound pressure wave which is very nearly a square wave. By comparison, a flute produces close to a sine wave, and clarinet/sax a sort of triangle wave. Now, what the keys/holes in a woodwind do ...


8

This has been done, at least as an experiment. There's a paper Artificial buzzing lips and brass instruments: Experimental results (pdf download link) in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America describing how they did this for a trombone mouthpiece. Mechanical saxophone embouchures have been done before as well. Here's one playing John Coltrane's ...


7

Absolutely. JB Arban once said that people have the wrong idea about embouchure - that it's a fixed thing like a statue. He said that embouchure is fluid - you need to do what's right and what sounds good. I am not surprised that you have difficulties with flute after trombone; remember how each instrument works: The flute is like a fickle bottle - you ...


7

Speaking purely from personal experience, braces are an annoyance but not a problem. I played the clarinet thru 3 years' worth of old-fashioned metal-band&wire braces, with some lip shredding, some applications of dental wax, and so on. Abrasion on internal (mouth) surfaces is likely with any instrument. In the woodwind family, since only single-...


7

The usual situation, if there is more than one part for the same instrument in a piece, is that the instruments do not play the same note. Such parts can be, and usually are, notated on the same staff in an orchestral score. Each such staff can be extracted into a single part or into multiple parts, as described by MattPutnam. Having a separate part for ...


6

This is a good question as transpositions notoriously trip people up. First off, Wagner's not playing any tricks, and you've got the right octave, so rest easy. :) The "normal" Bb clarinet's lowest written note is E2 which will sound as you described one whole-step lower than written pitch (D2.) The A clarinet has the same written range as the Bb clarinet,...


6

Tips on proper flute embouchure: Aperture (space between your lips) should look like a flat football. Use a mirror! Think of whistling = corners of mouth together and open aperture, then bring corners back and down (like a frown.) Lips should be smooth so air stream can be smooth. Aim air stream for edge on the far side of the opening (that's where the air ...


6

From the perspective of a music educator: the flute would be much easier to learn proper embouchure fundamentals on, as, with the lower pitch, it's more more forgiving. During my college days, I picked up the flute quite quickly, but I had a difficult time achieving a good tone on the piccolo. That said, it would not be impossible to learn on it's own, just ...


6

I play both the flute and piccolo, so my answer is completely based off of personal experience. In my opinion, the piccolo and flute are completely different. The only thing that's similar about the two is fingering. I suggest memorizing the piccolo fingering if you just want to play piccolo, since the piccolo does not have some of the keys that a flute ...


6

This is from a long time flute player. 40+ years. On a flute the 'open' note is 2nd octave C# which is a horrible note to tune on due to some compromises that were made in the original design of the Boehm system flute. The c# key is the tiny one at the top its that way because it acts as both the C# key and the key you open to get D and Eb in the flutes ...


6

The basic answer (which applies to carbon fiber stringed instruments too) is that our current understanding of materials science is insufficient to produce a material which exhibits as "flat", i.e. uniform frequency resonance curve as wood. Keep in mind that it takes a lot of skill to select proper wood -- there's a reason reed instruments are made ...


6

Irish whistle (aka pennywhistle aka tin whistle) is not only the easiest to learn, it's also the probably the only musical instrument in the world where you can get a professional level instrument for around US$20. A great starter site for Irish whistle is Chiff and Fipple.


6

It seems there is a large recorder making community, with a vast and very useful set of resources here. There are some links to technical plans, however a lot of them are for alto recorder rather than tenor, and even more still are stored on microfiche in libraries and not accessible online. Having said that: This PDF has a graph detailing bore diameters ...


6

If you are going to play from dots, there are two options. The C xaphoon (like any C instrument) will play in the correct key for any music written for piano, guitar and such like. So if there's a piece in, say, F, you play it as writ, it comes out at concert pitch. The Bb instrument will be good if you wish to play stuff written for Bb instruments - tenor ...


6

First, be aware that there's often a difference between the conductor's score and the individual parts. To save space and make it easier to navigate, a score often has multiple parts condensed onto one staff, even if the result would be horribly complex to decipher while playing. The individual parts can be written either combined or separate, depending on ...


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