Kyle Hayes, Editor

Items of interest by and for young horn players. Those interested in contributing to the HornZone should contact Kyle Hayes at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Italian School of Horn Playing

By Luca Benucci

The success of the Italian School of horn playing and teaching is due to the contribution of great soloists whose playing and teaching culminated in a special school and style of playing.  These players include Rossari, Belloli, Righini, De Angelis, Baccelli, Samson, and Bartolini. Today, the Italian School is divided into many technical philosophies but all converge into one musical ideal.

One philosophy, represented by a leading international hornist, Allesio Allegrini, is based on beauty of tone and virtuosity inspired by the greats of the past and present such as Luciano Giuliani and Domenico Ceccarossi.

My philosophy and approach distinguishes me from these greats – it is a combination of American tradition and techniques, European-style mentality (especially German), and Italian pathos, bel canto, plus a Latin temperament.  My teaching philosophy can be summed up in three letters:  A (air), B (buzz and blow), and C (canta/sing). Over the past two decades, thanks to Dale Clevenger and others, the technical level of horn players and other brass players in Italy has evolved greatly.

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A Note from the Road:

by Eric Reed

January 19, 2011

In three months since joining the Canadian Brass, I've learned so much! It has been an amazing experience, and it's an incredible honor to be a part of a group with such a storied place in the history of chamber music. Since September, we've been to the east and west coasts of North America and everywhere in between. We spent a week in Venezuela, and are headed to China in less than a week! It's tough to keep up with this schedule, and to maintain some sort of a normal life when I'm at home in New York City. But like I said, I've gained a lot from the experience so far, and would love to share some of this perspective on chamber music, the Canadian Brass and life as a musician with the HornZone readers!

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Prepare Like an Athlete

On game day, a typical professional athlete wakes up from a good night's sleep to eat a hearty breakfast followed by a hot shower. Next he warms up and stretches before meeting with the trainer to get taped up and massaged. The coach gives an opponent run-down and pep talk. The athlete's cross training has consisted of weights, plyometrics, yoga, wind sprints, and distance running. At the end of the day, the athlete warms down, stretches, receives a massage and a hearty meal, and returns home for a good night's sleep.

A typical horn player, however, wakes up on concert day from an OK night's sleep to eat whatever is in the fridge. He probably hasn't had a massage in a year, if ever, and the conductor has not given a pep talk or a com- poser run-down. The musician's cross training regimen ... well, enough said there.

Although musicians are athletes, they do not always properly care for their bodies in the same way athletes do. Here are three items horn players can learn from athletes.

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I’m accepted!!!!! So what should I do now?

by Jeff Bowman

For many high school horn playing seniors, the highlight of the year can be getting accepted into a school’s music program. For me, this was because so much work had been put into preparing for the audition. I know this is the case for at least some horn players, as they have applied to multiple schools of music in the hope that they will get in to at least one of them. But once that day comes, it feels like a huge weight has been lifted off your shoulders. Now, the question becomes, “what should I do to prepare for all of the music classes I will be taking?” The answer depends on whether or not you have any background or previous experience with music theory, ear training, or piano.

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by Kyle Hayes

Practicing is something that a serious music student should be doing daily – this is something we all know. Understanding HOW and WHAT to practice is where many (including myself) run into trouble. Some things that help are to make a schedule to follow, rate the things that you need to work on by what is important, and to make sure you touch everything so that you have a well rounded practice session.

Read more: Practice?!

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