Ask a Pro

Coordinated by Bill VerMeulen, the Ask a Pro section offers IHS members only a chance to have their (horn related!) questions answered by leading professionals. Responses will be in the form of videos posted on the IHS YouTube channel and embedded on this page. To ask a question, send an email to: This address is for IHS members only. Either log in above or Join today

This and other IHS videos can be found on our IHS YouTube Channel.

Question:

"We often have dress rehearsals the morning of the performance even when playing works such as Mahler 6! To add insult to injury, we also rehearse the night before which means we play the program 3 times in a 27-hour period (Fri rehearsal 7-9:30pm, Saturday dress rehearsal 10am-12:30pm, and Sat performance 7:30-10pm). What do you recommend as the best way to recover to be able to successfully make it through this demanding schedule of services?"

Bill VerMeulen's Answer

Question:

I am New York state music teacher (trombone) and I judge solo festivals. I had some high level french horn solos the past few years—not many—but a few——sometimes I would suggest asking their teacher about developing vibrato—I thought it was worth exploring——however—recently I was “schooled” by a horn teacher that I should never do that——horn players avoid vibrato like the plague. I never take points off their solo—offer it as a suggestion. I guess I have missed the boat————any way Do you have any suggestions? thanks Matthew Bond

Bill VerMeulen's Answer:

While it is true that some styles of horn playing don’t endorse the use of vibrato, you will find that vibrato use varies dramatically geographically throughout the horn world. Before the digital recording age horn playing developed geographically with sounds and styles that varied greatly. Vibrato was widely used within the French, Russian, East German, Czech horn communities and more. Horn sound and vibrato use was personal and often passed on within the tradition of the region and pedagogy. Although the sound and styles of the horn have homogenized some over the years vibrato use is still a personal and effective addition to expression not dissimilar to its use on any other instrument or voice. As such, I see no harm in encouraging vibrato use done tastefully with service to the music and the tradition of sound and style which best suits your feeling of the composer’s intent. I personally have no problem with judicious use of vibrato on Ravel Pavane or Tchaikovsky 5th but am less inclined to find it effective or necessary for Brahms or Bruckner. In recital and concerto work I am more inclined to endorse vibrato which adds color to the music and sound. Vibrato should be done to add color and increase musical line. Sadly, many use vibrato to mask a lack of center to one’s tone and pitch. Of the types of vibrato; Jaw, finger, breath, lipping, I feel strongly we should emulate singers with breath vibrato. It keeps the air moving and adds to the overall musical line. While many Americans may eschew vibrato use as a matter of dogma I disagree and use quite a bit in my personal solo playing, especially in Jazz styled works and vocal transcriptions. I am glad you don’t take points off and  encourage you to champion anything you believe will best serve the music since that is our sacred trust. 

Links

YouTube: the Horn Channel
Interesting, entertaining, educational and of great historic value. This is a collection of short videos by Ifor James, Hans Pizka and Greg Cass.
Il Club del Corno
The Italian Horn Club. Mostly in Italian with some English translations.
The British Horn Society
Dedicated to the art, craft and fun of horn playing.
www.ivasi.org
Interactive Video Audition Service International ("IVASI"): An Inter-Active Video Guide for Orchestral Preparation, developed by IHS life member James Decker
Nederlands Hoornisten Genootschap
Dutch Horn Society
(in Dutch only)
Horn Articles Online
A large collection of information on horn playing and horn history by John Ericson.
日本ホルン協会
Japan Horn Society
(in Japanese only)
www.hornexcerpts.org
A large site featuring music and recorded examples of horn excerpts by Daren Robbins.
www.waltornia.pl
A site run by Damian Walentek of the Polish National Radio Symphony in Katowice, for the promotion of the horn in Poland (Polish Lanaguage only)
Pip Eastop
Inventions, articles, and much more in a site by a well-known British player.
www.hoorn.be
A Belgian horn site (in Flemish only)
Dick Martz
Photos and descriptions of an interesting personal collection of horns.
www.trompista.com
A Portuguese language horn forum.
Hornplanet.com
A fun site, created by Thomas Bacon.
Hornplayer.net
Free classifieds, 300 page information archive, Walter Hecht's Significa, section listings, and more by Robin Moffatt.
Julia Rose's Horn Page
Notes from master classes by Mark Lawrence, David Krehbiel, Arnold Jacobs, audition lists, and more.
Embouchures.com
Hornist Lucinda Lewis shares information for brass players suffering with embouchure problems or lip injuries.
Bob Ward's Homepage
Check out the warm-up book and other information from this San Francisco Symphony hornist.
http://www.wienerhorn.com
All things horn in Vienna. Includes articles, a forum and a marketplace. In German only.
http://www.iwbc-online.org/
Website of the International women's Brass conference.
An enthusiasm for Dennis Brain
A tribute website to Dennis Brain (1921-1957). [Japanese and English]
Hans Pizka's Homepage
Bios of famous hornists, advice for young players, big pictures, and more.
BLOGS What is a blog? See The Horn Call, Oct. 2006, p. 44. Barry Tuckwell: A Life With French (sic) Horn
A podcast interview from the University of Melbourne. Scroll down to program number 21.
Works with Horn by Female Composers
An excellent resource by Lin Foulk.

The Horn List at Yahoo! Groups

This horn list is intended as a forum for the exchange of information and opinions related to the horn and horn performance. It is a meeting point where all hornists - professionals, students, and amateurs alike - can trade ideas in a congenial, constructive atmosphere, governed by the rules of mutual respect and common courtesy. Over 1000 members.

View the latest messages.
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"The Hornlist"

The purpose of the Horn Discussion Group is to provide a forum for electronic conversation about all things relating to the horn's playing technique, repertoire, ensembles, personalities, and so on. Sending a message to the list causes it to be distributed automatically to a subscribing membership of about 900 people worldwide. So questions get lots of answers, and issues get lots of responses. Like hornists themselves, the list is usually full of friendly banter and helpfulness with the occasional curmudgeon. All are welcome.

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Network

Marketplace
Buy or sell horns, accessories, music, etc. Only IHS members are allowed to post and only registered site users may view contact information for items listed.

Member News
IHS news, as well as news items from the horn world submitted by IHS members.

Horn Event Calendar
Add your concert, clinic or workshop to the horn events calendar. Only IHS members are allowed to post.

Performance Job Listings
Compiled and updated quarterly by Jeffrey Agrell

Jobline
A listing of horn related employment opportunities, primarily academic. To post a job opening announcement contact Esta dirección de correo electrónico está siendo protegida contra los robots de spam. Necesita tener JavaScript habilitado para poder verlo..

Assistantships
Assistantships, fellowships and other financial aid opportunities for student hornists. To post an announcement contact Esta dirección de correo electrónico está siendo protegida contra los robots de spam. Necesita tener JavaScript habilitado para poder verlo..

IHS Forum
Join fellow horn players in a broad ranging forum. Only Only IHS members are allowed to post. The forum includes an"Ask the Pros" section with a different correspondent every other month.

Links
Some of the best the web has to offer for horn players, including many national or regional horn related sites.

Horn Performance Jobs

Compiled by Esta dirección de correo electrónico está siendo protegida contra los robots de spam. Necesita tener JavaScript habilitado para poder verlo.

IHS Members are invited to submit information on any upcoming horn auditions not listed here.


Argentina

Armenia

Australia

Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra

Section Principal Horn. Application deadline: not listed. Audition date: not listed.

Queensland Symphony Orchestra

Associate Principal Horn. Application deadline: Jan. 19, 2021. Audition date: Jan. 25, 2021 (recorded round) and Mar. 9, 2021 (live round).

Austria

Belgium

De Munt, La Monnaie

Horn 2 & 4. Application deadline: March 25, 2021. Audition date: May 31, 2021.

Brazil

Bulgaria

Canada

Chile

China

Guiyang Symphony Orchestra

Horn, principal. Application deadline: not listed. Audition date: not listed.

Guiyang Symphony Orchestra

Horn, associate principal. Application deadline: not listed. Audition date: not listed.

Hangzhou Philharmonic Orchestra

Associate Principal French Horn. Application deadline: not listed. Audition date: not listed.

Kunming International Philharmonic

French Horn (One-year contract). Application deadline: November 30, 2020. Audition date: not listed.

Colombia

Croatia

Cyprus

Czech Republic

Brno Philharmonic

First French Horn Player. Application deadline: May 28, 2021. Audition date: June 29, 2021.

Janáček Philharmonic Orchestra

International Orchestral Academy (Apprenticeship/Academy position). Application deadline: October 31, 2020. Audition date: N/A.

Denmark

Ecuador

Egypt

Estonia

Europe

Finland

France

Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France

Principal horn. Application deadline: April 15, 2021. Audition date: May 3, 2021.

Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg

UN COR SOLO et Conseiller artistique et pédagogique (enseignant) à mi-temps au C.R.R. de Strasbourg. Application deadline: Mar. 2, 2021. Audition date: Mar. 13, 2021.

Germany

Frankfurt Radio Symphony

Orchesterakademie des hr-Sinfonieorchesters Stipendiat*in Horn (Apprenticeship/Academy position). Application deadline: not listed. Audition date: not listed.

Granada

Greece

Hong Kong

Hungary

Iceland

Ireland

Israel

Italy

Fondazione Orchestra Sinfonica J. Haydn di Bolzano e Trento

Concorso per II corno con obbligo del IV corno e della fila. Application deadline: Mar. 21, 2021. Audition date: April 8, 2021.

Fondazione Orchestra Sinfonica J. Haydn di Bolzano e Trento

Audizione per corno (Extra work/Substitutes). Application deadline: Dec. 1, 2020. Audition date: not listed.

Fondazione Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana

Ruoli in Orchestra. Application deadline: Oct. 31. Audition date: not listed.

Japan

Latvia

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Macao

Malaysia

Malta

Mexico

Monaco

Montenegro

Netherlands

New Zealand

Royal New Zealand Navy Band

Horn. Ongoing auditions.

Norway

Palestine/Israel

Poland

Portugal

Qatar

Russia

Scotland

Serbia

Singapore

Singapore Symphony Orchestra

Principal Horn. Application deadline: Jan. 8, 2021. Audition date: not listed.

Slovakia

Slovak Sinfonietta Žilina

2nd French horn with the obligation to play the 1st French horn. Application deadline: April 30, 2021. Audition date: May 4, 2021.

Slovenia

South Africa

South Korea

Spain

Consorcio de Santiago - Real Filharmonía de Galicia

Curso Avanzado de Especialización Orquestal. Application deadline: May 21, 2021. Audition date: not listed.

Orquesta Sinfónica de la Región de Murcia

Trompa Solista. Application deadline: August 31, 2020. Audition date: not listed.

Sweden

Malmö Symfoniorkester

Low Horn. Application deadline: April 5, 2021. Audition date: Recordings due April 5, 2021. Final round June 3, 2021.

Switzerland

Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

Diploma of Advanced Studies in Orchestral Performance - French Horn (apprenticeship / academy position). Application deadline: Mar. 1, 2021. Audition date: May 10, 2021.

Taiwan

Turkey

United Kingdom

Corps of Army Music

Horn. Ongoing auditions.

Opera North

Resonance residencies. Application deadline: Oct. 19, 2020. Audition date: N/A.

Paraorchestra

Musician Callout 2020/21. Application deadline: Feb. 8, 2021. Audition date: not listed.

Royal Air Force

Horn - ongoing auditions.

USA

Civic Orchestra of Chicago

Fellowship | Regular Membership | Associate Membership (apprenticeship / academy position). Application deadline: Mar. 5, 2021. Audition date: Recordings due Mar. 5, 2021.

New World Symphony

(apprenticeship/academy position). Application deadline: not listed. Audition date: not listed.

Shen Yun Orchestra

Horn. Application deadline: ongoing. Audition date: ongoing.

United States Air Force Band

Assistant Principal/Associate Third Horn with the Concert Band. Application deadline: Mar. 8, 2021. Audition date: April 12-13, 2021.

United States Air Force Academy Band

Horn. Application deadline: Jan. 11, 2021. Audition date: Feb. 22-26, 2021.

United States Marine Corps Music (VA, WV, TN, and NC)

French Horn - VA, WV, TN, and NC. Application deadline: December 31, 2020. Audition date: not listed.

US Marine Corps Music

Marine Corps French Horn Player - Fort Worth, TX. Application deadline: Dec. 31, 2020. Audition date: not listed.

US Marine Corps Musician Enlistment

Horn. Ongoing auditions. For further information please contact Gunnery Sergeant Jonathan Bley at 757-613-8215. Or by e-mail at Esta dirección de correo electrónico está siendo protegida contra los robots de spam. Necesita tener JavaScript habilitado para poder verlo.

U.S. Navy Band

French Horn, Concert/Ceremonial Band. Application deadline: April 2, 2021. Audition date: Recordings due April 2, 2021.

Vietnam

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