Robert Dorer master class at Rice

Robert Dorer, second trumpet in the Minnesota Orchestra, gave a master class to the students of Marie Speziale at Rice University on Monday, March 18.

Four students performed in the master class: Ian Kivler, Philip Hembree, David Sedgwick, and Eric Hennies. Dorer offered a variety of suggestions, both verbally and through example, for each student. Much of the master class came back to the fundamental concept of breathing and playing with as little effort as possible in order to create the best sound and most music. He reiterated the ideas of breathing in 95% of the air through a quarter-sized aperture, 3% through a straw-sized aperture, and 2% through a coffee-straw-sized aperture to make sure there is no excess tension in the throat or mouth, which should be “o” shaped. At the same time, he pointed out that he does not teach about air moving out anymore, but rather he encourages trumpeters to “sound” and not “blow” the trumpet. He also discussed the idea of practicing in segments. He stated that trumpeters should have a plan for every time they play, regardless of whether it is playing one note or an entire work, always go from the beginning to the end of their intended section, and when finished, evaluate.


In addition to Speziale’s studio, several area trumpeters, Barbara Butler, Doug Carlsen of the Minnesota Orchestra, and the entire trumpet section of the Houston Symphony came to the master class.

Source: Amanda Pepping, ITG News Editor

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