How to Play French Horn

Video Lectures

Displaying all 23 video lectures.
Lecture 1
How to Play French Horn: Getting Started
Play Video
How to Play French Horn: Getting Started


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener gives an introduction to the French Horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I am here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to talk to you a little bit about how to not to get frustrated when trying to play the French horn. Now if you are trying to learn to play the French horn and you feel very frustrated, you are not crazy. The French horn is the hardest wind instrument and there's actually very good reason for that. It is something called the over tone series. It has to do with the way the horn is built and basically what it means is that you might put down a particular fingering for a particular note but that doesn't mean that is the note that is going to come out. You have to have the right fingering and you have to have the right embrasure which is the way that your mouth is set. Now on the over tone series for the horn what happens is the higher that you go the fingering of notes get closer and closer together. So for example an F,G and a A all the top of the staff on the French horn are all fingered the same way which is just thumb. So if you are playing a low register and you want to go up and hit a G it is going to be hard because the note on one side as the same fingering and the note on the other side has the same fingering. So you have to hit just so and what is going to make the difference is the way that you set your mouth. So for example that F, G, and A that I'm talking about I'm going to play them all for you and you would notice that they are all the same fingering. I do that all with my mouth and that is what you have to do too. It is very hard but, do not get frustrated the French horn drives away so many other people that you would be in high demand once you practiced it and mastered it and can do it yourself. So take heart it is a great instrument and you do find at it if you practice enough."

Lecture 2
How to Hold the French Horn
Play Video
How to Hold the French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to hold the French horn properly when playing.



Transcript:
KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com, and I'm going to show you the proper way to hold the French horn. First of all as with any instrument that you might play, it is very important that you sit up as straight as possible and the practical reason for that is that, that allows you to breath the best that you can. That way you are not scrunching up on your diaphragm. If you sitting straight up you could breath, you could get as much air in here as possible. You want your feet flat on the floor. You could have them parallel in front of you. Sometimes I swing a knee out to the right, you are going to take the bell and place it on your right thigh so it wont slip it off. The horn is going to be about a 45 degree angle, you would notice with my left hand here going to have the thumb on the thumb key, my three other fingers right on the three keys up top and my pinkie in the pinkie ring. So I have my horn right in position, the bells on the thigh, it is at a 45 degree angle, hand is in place, now I simply bring the horn to my mouth. Sometimes beginner horn players would set there horn up and try to go to the horn and what ends up happening is that there throat constricts because they are adding unnatural angle. If you are sitting up straight then just bring the horn to you, like so. With your right hand your going to have it inside of the bell but that is another tip."

Lecture 3
How to Use Mouthpiece Pressure on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Use Mouthpiece Pressure on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to use proper mouthpiece pressure when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com, to show you how to use correct mouthpiece pressure when playing the horn. Now when you are playing a brass instrument, you need some kind of pressure. You need to have some tension between the mouthpiece and your vibrating lips; however a temptation among younger players is press as hard as possible to try to get those high notes when they are not coming out. So what happens is that they end up pulling the horn very hard to their face like so. If you are playing too hard, your are going to notice maybe two things. First of all you would very quickly develop a ring around your mouth that is a indentation from the mouthpiece. Now if you have been playing for a extended period of time, that ring is going to show up no matter what. But if you have been playing for very short period and you are pressing very hard and you notice that you have very red ring you are probably pressing too hard. Also although your lips are going to hurt the more you play or ache a little bit. Your teeth should never hurt. If you are pressing too hard against the mouthpiece, then your teeth would most likely hurt and that is a good indication. So what you want is just a relaxed tension but not too much. The reason if you think about it is simple the lips are muscles and just like any muscle if you are constrict it can't do its job. You could imagine it would be very hard to lift something with your biceps if someone is holding your bicep as tight as possible. It is the same thing with your mouth. You want to give it room to do its job. That is how you apply the correct amount of pressure to a mouth piece."

Lecture 4
How to Use Embouchure & Lips on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Use Embouchure & Lips on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to use embouchure and your lips correctly when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you how to keep your corners set when you play the French horn. So when you go to buzz into your mouth piece like so, it is important that you keep the corners of your mouth set. A beginner player is more likely to buzz very loosely like this something like that and you notice when I did that everything is buzzing here. What you want to do is you want to keep your corners, the corners of your mouth set almost like a pucker like this. If they are set then it focuses you buzz, it focuses the air that way air is not escaping out in the sides of your mouth. One other thing with beginning horn players in particular there is also a temptation to puff out your cheeks and that is something that is probably originated from pictures of seeing Louie Armstrong who's cheeks puff really big. But you don't want to do that because that dissipates the pressure of your air flow. Keep your cheeks in, keep your corners set and then all the air you are blowing is your blowing directly from your vibrating lips and you are going to get the nose out of it."

Lecture 5
Sounding Notes on a French Horn
Play Video
Sounding Notes on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to sound notes accurately when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com, to talk about how to work on accuracy. Accuracy is one of the hardest thing with the French horn because it depends not just on getting the right fingering down but also a exact placement of your embrasure. So really the biggest trick to accuracy in horn playing is muscle memory. It is playing enough time that you know what for example a high F feels like because you played it so many times so that when you get your passage you have to hit that high F your embrasure automatically goes to the exact position. It is very much like for example in golf, a golf swing like at first if you are first swinging in golf swing it is very conscientious but if you do it enough times your muscles remember on there own how to do it. So that F; there it is. If I can try to remember what that feels like then I should be able to hit it from any position. You could play any note before you should still be able to hit it. It is still there because the muscles remembered on there own where it was so it is also another reason to practice regularly so that you can get the feeling of those notes under your lips."

Lecture 6
How to Play a French Horn with Complex Fingerings
Play Video
How to Play a French Horn with Complex Fingerings


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to play with complex fingerings for the French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to talk about the trick to working on your fingering. Often times when you are playing a passage often a quicker passage that requires more complex fingerings, you will find a temptation to lift your fingers up off of the keys when you are pressing down like this but that is going to slow you down. What you want to do is you want to keep the pads of your fingers on the rooters at all times and you don't need them, you don't want them flat like this, you want just the finger tips right on the edge. Here and you want to keep them on so you press the key down and you come back up, your finger hardly leaves the key. If you remember to keep your fingers, your fingertips on the keys it will help you to play the passages more quickly, like so."

Lecture 7
Understanding Volume Dynamics on a French Horn
Play Video
Understanding Volume Dynamics on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to control volume when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com, I'm going to show you how to play loud and soft on a French horn. Basically the volume of the notes that you play depends on how quickly the air is passing through the horn and also how much air. So a louder note is one that is pushing a large amount of air as quickly as possible through the horn. A softer note is one using less air and is passing more slowly. The concept is pretty simple but there are a couple of things that you want to remember first of all if you are playing softly you have to make sure that at least enough air is going through that you don't loose your buzz. You require some air pressure to keep the lips vibrating, they vibrate over that flow of air and if the flow of air stops, then its much more difficult to vibrate. So if you are playing soft your just want to keep the note going. You could see that its still very soft but it never peters out. So now one thing to remember when you are playing loudly is you don't want to over blow and that happens when a horn player want to play very loudly and they just push as much air as possible and what happens is that they loose control and it actually pops up to the next note or that it blows sharp. So you want to play loudly but you want to try to control the air and control the buzz that is the biggest thing. When you are playing loudly,don't let it effect your embouchure. So for example and that is how you play loudly and softly on a French horn."

Lecture 8
Changing Pitch With Embouchure on a French Horn
Play Video
Changing Pitch With Embouchure on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to change the pitch using embouchure when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com. I'm going to show you how to raise or lower a pitch on the French horn using only your mouth. Now although a French horn like most wind instruments has keys to help you pick out certain notes. You could actually get higher and lower notes base simply on how to set your mouth when you are buzzing on a mouth piece. So to get higher notes what you want to do is keep your mouth as tight as possible and that will raise the pitch. For a lower pitch you want a much more relaxed embouchure so for a higher note it is going to look more like this. For a lower note, it is more like this. So on the mouth piece look at my embrasure here is a higher note and a lower note you should be able to see the shape of my mouth is changing for the higher note my embrasure is stretched thinner and tighter. For the lower note its more relaxed and it makes my jaw drop slightly. So on the French horn the difference again is obvious and this how you control pitch with your mouth."

Lecture 9
How to Adjust French Horn Intonation With Slides
Play Video
How to Adjust French Horn Intonation With Slides


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to change intonation using the slides when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to show you how to adjust intonation using your slides. So you'll see on the French horn there are quite of number of slides and what these do is control intonation and intonation is basically where your pitch lies. You want to be in tune with the people around you who you're playing with. If you feel that you are too sharp that means that you are too high, that you are higher then the people around your. If you are flat that means that your lower then that people around you and you want if your playing the same pitch as some one else to be as close to them as possible. So if you're sharp or too high you want to bring your pitch down to meet everyone else and the way that you do that is to pull out slides. For example, pull this slide out like I did just there would lower my pitch on my horn. So if I'm already higher then everyone else and I lower the pitch then I should come down and meet everyone else. Now it is very .......... like you think of a low instrument and you think of the tuba something that is very big. The more tubing the lower the note. You think of a high instrument like a piccolo it is very small so the least tubing the higher the notes. So same thing with the horn when you are pulling the slide out you are in fact making the horn longer you are creating more tubing therefore it makes more sense that the pitch would lower. Now if your feeling flat or sharp, the first place that you want to start missing around is with these main slides right here on this side of the horn. However, it is also possible that certain notes that you play might also require intonation and that is in this part right here. If for example every time I press down my middle finger and I feel that I'm sharp or high, then I what to extend the tubing here I'm pulling up the slide for the second valve here that correspond my middle finger. So again if you feel that you are on the low side and you want to get higher, you shorten the tubing or press the slides in it makes sense. So you will find that most horns when you get them there ideal intonation has all the slides at least out to some extent and they build it that way so you have room to push them in or to pull them out as you play. So just remember as you are playing with other people to constantly be aware of weather or not if you are higher or lower then people who are playing the same pitch as you and remember you could use your slides to adjust that intonation."

Lecture 10
Hand Stopping the Bell on a French Horn
Play Video
Hand Stopping the Bell on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to hand mute the bell when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you the correct way to hold your hand in the bell of a French horn. First of all the reason that horn players put there hands in the bell is that first it effects the sound of the horn, it gives the horn and part it characteristic mellow quality and second of all you could control intonation with your hand. So first I'm going to show you what your hand should look like the first thing I'm going to do is you want to put these four fingers together as tightly as possible. Make sure that there is hardly any space between them and then what you want to do is you want to scrunch your hand up like this. This is about the shape that you want, you are going to put your thumb just like so and hopefully you could see that is up against the other fingers just as tight as they are with each other. The shape here is almost like the Nike swoosh that is what you are going for so once you have the proper position of your hand you are going put inside of the bell. What is important here is that the back of your fingers is out against the far side of the wall of the bell. Like so. You don't want to end so fine that your hand is blocking off the air but as you could see you want it in pretty far you want to point when you could see my knuckles are just visible. If you keep your hand just like this, then you would be in a good position to change intonation and to ensure that you have the mellow tone that you want."

Lecture 11
Adjusting French Horn Intonation with the Hand-in-Bell Technique
Play Video
Adjusting French Horn Intonation with the Hand-in-Bell Technique


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how change pitch with your hand in the bell when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you the correct way to hold your hand in the bell of a French horn. First of all the reason that horn players put their hands in the bell is that first it effects the sound of the horn, it gives the horn in part it characteristic mellow quality and second of all you can control intonation with your hand. So first I'm going to show you what your hand should look like. The first thing I'm going to do is you want to put these four fingers together as tightly as possible. Make sure that there is hardly any space between them and then what you want to do is you want to scrunch your hand up like this. This is about the shape that you want, you are going to put your thumb just like so and hopefully you can see that is up against the other fingers just as tight as they are with each other. The shape here is almost like the Nike swoosh that is what you are going for. So once you have the proper position of your hand, you are going put it inside of the bell. What is important here is that the back of your fingers is up against the far side of the wall of the bell. Like so. You don't want to end so fine that your hand is blocking off the air but as you can see you want it in pretty far. You want to point where you can see my knuckles are just visible. If you keep your hands like this then you would be in a good position to change intonation and to ensure that you have the mellow tone that you want."

Lecture 12
Stopping & Muting on a French Horn
Play Video
Stopping & Muting on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to stop or mute a French horn when playing.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com, I'm going to show you how to play stopped horn. Stopped horn is just a type of muted horn and if you are reading a piece of music it will either say stopped horn or on top of a note there would be a small plus sign that means stopped. Now they make mutes that automatically stopped horns. These are stopped mutes they look like this in which case you simply place mute in the bell and automatically your horn is stopped. You see that it sounds very pitched and brassy. It is sort of a special effect for the horn. Now it is a luxury to be able to have the time to put a stopped mute in the bell so really many advance home players don't even bother to put the stop mute. They get same effect using just there hand. This is what you do go ahead and you put your horn excuse me your hand in the bell as usual but instead of stopping right here go all the way in so your hand is in very tightly and once it is in tight as possible give it a twist to completely stop off the air. It is going to feel very very tight around your knuckles but that is good. So once you have the air completely stopped off this should sound some what similar. Again it is that same pinched whiny noise. Now there is one more thing that you have to know. If for example you are reading a piece of music you see that the stopped note is a G you go ahead and stop the horn but you don't use the fingering of a G which is open. Whenever you are playing stopped horn with a mute go without, you have to use a fingering a half step below. So in this instance I'm trying to play a G; that is a G. If I'm going to play it stopped, I actually have to use the fingering for G flat to get that same pitch. Keep in mind that when you play stopped horn it is going to tend to be high so you have to adjust with your mouth, drop your jaw a little bit to keep it loud enough that it stays in tone. So those are all the tricks that you need to know in order to play stopped horn."

Lecture 13
Slurring Notes on a French Horn
Play Video
Slurring Notes on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to slur notes when playing French horn.



Transcript:
KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to show you how to play a slur on the French horn. In music, a slur looks like this. A slur is this curve line right here, it could be a part of passage as you see here and this slur could go above the notes or the slur may appear below the notes. Slur means that all of these notes are slurred together. A slur may also happens between just two notes as we see right here. This is a slur from an E up to a D and this would be smooth and connect the air will not stop. All that slur means is that the two notes are connected and you don't stop the air in between. So if for example you saw a A and then a C and there was no slur, it would be two distinct notes. Like so. If you were to slur them they would be nice and smooth. Now when slurring I'm keeping the air study and constant so the air would never stop. I keep on blowing and all that changes is my fingering if the changing notes is also changing fingering and my embouchure but the air never stops. You could play entire passages as slurs if that is how they are written and that is how you play a slur."

Lecture 14
Legato Tonguing on a French Horn
Play Video
Legato Tonguing on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to play with legato tonguing techniques when playing the French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you how to do legato tonguing on the French horn. Here you see a series of legato marks and they are these long lines above the note and those lines remind you that the note makes it long as possible almost but not quite connected. Now although legato means is that the time for these notes are going to be very smooth; okay very long and very smooth. But unlike in slurs there is going to be a slight break in between notes. They are not going to be completely connected with air so one thing to think about that might help you where imagining where is about tonguing is to think about a paintbrush and how a painter may go one way and then goes the other. It is just a slight motion of picking up the brush and starting in another direction. Okay nice and smooth like that. If I where to play a legato scale it would sound like this. You could hear that the notes are all very long, they are almost connected but there is slight separation. You can hear how long they are you. You can compare that to maybe normal articulation which would sound like this. Legato connects notes a little bit more but you still use your tongue to stop the last note and to start the next one and that is how legato tonguing is done."

Lecture 15
How to Play Staccato Notes on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Play Staccato Notes on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to play staccato notes when playing the French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to show you how to play staccato on the French horn. Staccato marks look like this. All that means is to play a note very short. So if for example I would normally play a scale like this, if those notes had staccato marks under them it would sound like this. They are very short, they are very to the point. It almost helps to think of Bebe gun fire and in faster passages they are going to sound even more shorter. Like so and that is how you play staccato."

Lecture 16
How to Play Accenting Notes on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Play Accenting Notes on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to play accent notes when playing the French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you how to play accent marks on the French horn. A accent mark looks like this. Here you see accent marks above the notes and the shape of the accent mark even shows you how it works with the big part, the loud part being at the very beginning and a gradual decrease. As much as the name implies, it simply means to accent or emphasize that note and particularly the front end of the note. When you are going to play accent marks it helps to imagine ringing a bell. When you ring a bell, the first thing you hear is the clapper hitting the side of the bell and its very pronounced and then the sound gradually dies from there. It is the same thing with accent marks. So again here would be a normal scale without accent marks. With accent marks. You could tell the front end of each note is the hardest hit and then it gradually recedes a little bit before the next accent articulation and that is how you play accent marks."

Lecture 17
How to Play Glissando Notes on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Play Glissando Notes on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to play glissando notes when playing the French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to talk to you about how to play a glissando on the French horn. This is what a glissando looks like. It is really pretty simple. All you do is you start on the first note and you want to get to the last note and you can hit as many notes in between as possible. What it is going to sound like is just a rip. So it is one of the few times where a horn player could just let loose. So don't be afraid to do so. The most important thing is that you start on the correct note, that you end on the correct note and that you stay in time but definitely try to hit as many notes in between as possible. You will notice that you could actually use your fingers slightly to try to hit more notes in between or if you blow all the way through it you should hit on the notes in between and you don't use your fingers. Really the ideal with this sign or the spirit of it is something like the hunting horn call and the French horn use to be a hunting horn so it comes pretty naturally. Just remember when you playing glissando let loose, let it rip, it is the most natural thing to play on the horn."

Lecture 18
Emptying the Spit Valve on a French Horn
Play Video
Emptying the Spit Valve on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to empty the spit valve after playing the French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you what to do if you start to hear a gurgly sound coming from your horn. So when you here this gurgly or statically sound, what you are actually hearing is water inside the horn which horn players typically refer to it as spit but we don't spit into our horns. What it really is, is all that warm air condensing and it collects and so if you don't get rid of if, you start to hear it as it gurgles through the instrument. So you want to remember to dump your spit regularly. Now some horns come with a spit valve right here. All you do is open the valve and blow, another good place to check is also on this side of the horn. You want to check your main slides. You just take them out, shake them. For this one what you want to do is remember to take your mouth piece out because you are going to dump the whole horn, you want to take that slug out, you want to take this tighten slide, so now open, open, open, open, these are all open. If is a stirring wheel you want to imaging taking a right hand turn like so. Shake the horn out, then bring around the other way, wiggle upon the key a bit. Now it is also possible that spit is collecting in this area as well where these slides are and particularly for example if every time you are press your second, your middle finger, down here and you here that gurgling noise, it is probably some where right here. So you just take one of these sides out, shake it, you spit that little spit in there and put it back in the way you had it. So this is one thing to remember, to constantly dump your spit if you hear that gurgling sound."

Lecture 19
How to Oil the Valves on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Oil the Valves on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to oil the rotor valves on a French horn for better sound.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here with behalf of expertvillage.com to show you the correct way to oil a French horn. Keeping your horn oiled is part of proper horn maintenance. You want to make sure that you go out and buy rubber oil from your local music shop. And you are going to want to apply it to the keys or what it is called on a French horn, rotors. Now the purpose of keeping your rotors oil is that so that your keys don't stick. That is the worse thing to happen to your when you go to play a certain note, you put down the fingering that you need and you find that the key doesn't budge. So to prevent that it is very important to keep your rotors oiled. There are a couple of key places for you to oil. First of all there is a place where the key meets this bar here, so you go ahead and apply oil to each of those joint. Another key place to oil is underneath where the rotors are visible. Go ahead and apply oil to the other side of each rotor encase this sticking problem is there and as you are oiling it would help to wiggle the keys sort of work the oil into the rotor as much as possible. Another place is to screw off these rotor caps and just a drop or two right on top. Sometimes when you are oiling the keys and you take the cap off just like this you will notice that the rotor is bone dry. If it is bone dry, it means that you have not been good; you have not been oiling your rotors as you should. So you see that it is pretty simple. You want to unscrew all four of the caps and oil them like so. The other place is putting oil inside this tubbing here and you could see the tubing runs directly into the rotor. You see that the rotor is this cylinder; the cylindrical object right here. So for example I wanted to put oil into my middle valve here I would take those slides out, I will put the horn up like so, and I would put about 2 drops inside of each tube. So just like this. One other word of caution is that oil can get all over the place so try to be as careful as possible. Now what you want to do is you want to wiggle those keys so that oil that is just running into the odor, in the rotor excuse me get all around in there. Then you go ahead and replace the slides and you are good as new so you want to do that for each of the keys here. As you could see the tubing for the third valve are these two right here, for the second valve here, for the first valve this two here and then for the thumb key you want to put the oil in this slide and this slide they both run into that thumb rotor. And that is how you oil your keys."

Lecture 20
How to Grease the Slides on a French Horn
Play Video
How to Grease the Slides on a French Horn


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to grease the slides of a French horn for better playing.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to show you how to grease slides on a French horn. Now keeping your slides greased is basic for maintenance and it is very important because you need to be able to move your slides first of all for intonation so you could adjust them by pulling them out or pushing them in and second of all so you could take them all the way out if you need to dump your spit. Now the best way to do this I will show you so here is the slide that have got taken out of that horn. You to buy some kind of tuning slide grease that you should be able to find at any basic music store. I usually use my fingers so I can control as best as possible where the grease is going but it is up to you if you rather not. You want to apply it as you are right here towards the end of the tubing, you want to apply it all the way around the perimeter like so. Now once you have done that you are going to put it into the horn. Now particularly when you are taking slides out or putting them back in on this side of the horn with the keys, remember to press down the key that corresponds to the tubing where you are going to be putting the slide in so the pressure does not build up. If you are doing as I'm doing here you doing the side underneath which is the B flat side of the horn you would press on that key and the thumb key. Okay so I have my first finger pressed down, I have my thumb pressed down, I'm going to push the slide all the way end. Now because I put the grease right at the very end of the tubing as I pushed it in the entire tubes, the entire way to break tubes without the grease. So now I pull on them and I press in, out, in, and your repeat this as often necessary until you find where it starts moving much more smoothly as it did before. Once you have done all of these steps go ahead and put it back to the intonation setting where you had it before and now that slide is greased and you don't have to worry about it."

Lecture 21
French Horn Practice Tips
Play Video
French Horn Practice Tips


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to get the most out of your practice when playing French horn.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! My name is Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to talk about the correct way to practice. So you could only become better on the French horn through practice and practicing regularly that is key. Ideally you want to get to the point where you're practicing everyday and where you are somewhat religious about it but no more so then you would be about brushing your teeth. It is just something that you do and by practicing regularly it keeps up the strength of your embbouchure. Now when you are practicing, you don't want to just be playing haphazardly, doing a whole bunch of different things but you want is a routine. So your routine might begin with a warm up, something to get your lips buzzing, or after that you might want to do something like scales to get your fingers down, work on fingering, and then after that you might want to work on specific a tunes. But the most important thing like I said is just practicing regularly and also to have some kind of routine to stick with and that is the best way to practice."

Lecture 22
French Horn Training Methods
Play Video
French Horn Training Methods


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to use training methods for learning difficult French horn pieces.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com to talk about the best way to improve on a piece of music as a French hornist. So as you been playing French horn for a while you will likey be playing groups of other people and there are going to be passages in certain pieces of music that would like give you trouble. You are not going to get better at those passages by simple pounding away at them and trying to play them over and over if they are giving you trouble. The best thing to do in practice is to start by slowing it way way down and that is so much more effective then trying to play it as in its regular tempo and flubbing it every time. Bring the tempo way down so it is nice and slow, so it is manageable for you and practice it that way first keeping a study time. Maybe that passage nice and slow. If there is a particular part of a passage that gives you trouble go ahead and practice it over and over and over to get the feel for it. And so forth whatever it takes to really slow a certain section down and get it right. Once you have got it down at a slow tempo you could gradually build it back up so it is a little bit faster. And faster. It will get easier and easier until you are at the tempo where it should be and that is the most effective way to practice a passage of music."

Lecture 23
How to Play the French Horn Standing Up
Play Video
How to Play the French Horn Standing Up


In this video lesson, Expert Katherine Liesener teaches how to play the French horn standing up.



Transcript: KATHERINE LIESENER: "Hi! I'm Katie and I'm here on behalf of expertvillage.com and I'm going to show you how to play the horn while standing. Now for many people its unnatural to try to play a horn while standing because from a early age horn players are always thought to keep there bell on there thigh when the are sitting down. But for recitals you might want to stand to have greater stage presence or in some pieces of music there would actually be direction called horns up. Which you have lift the bell up off of your thigh so let me just show you how this is done. I will show you how to do it standing. First of all you will see I got this modification for my horn and you could get also. It is basically a small shelf to give added support with the left hand but even without this you could can play standing up and the difference would be the way that you have your hand on the bell. Normally when you are sitting down you have it almost directly against the side maybe slightly down. What you are going to do when you are standing is go ahead and lift it so it is up on top. Now all of sudden your bell is resting on something, it is resting on the back of your hand. Once you do that it is just as simple as always you have your elbow out, you could feel free to move around and be expressive as you play to some extent and you will find much the same as ..... horn playing. No sweat."