Kopprasch Project: Some Final Thoughts

koppraschcoversAs promised, here are some closing thoughts on the Kopprasch Project. I wrote a similar post at roughly the halfway point, which you can read here. Actually there is very little to add to what I said then, except to emphasize how beneficial this endeavor has been for me as a horn player and teacher. I am extremely grateful to have had the time and resources necessary to complete a project of this scope, and have plans for other videos (no more Kopprasch for a while, though) in the future. For those who might be interested, here are some statistics and other related information.

  • Project Duration: Jan 23, 2011  to Mar 28, 2014 (3 years, 2 months, 6 days)
  • Total Views:  ca. 75,000 and counting
  • Subscribers: 462 and counting
  • Editions: 60 Studies for Horn, Book 1 (International Music Company, ed. James Chambers); Kopprasch Complete (Cornopub, ed. Corbin Wagner)
  • Equipment Used:  Horns: Yamaha 667V, Hans Hoyer G10, Engelbert Schmid ES1; Mouthpieces: Laskey 75G, Houser Standley Cup with 17.5mm “E” rim
  • Video Hardware/Software: Canon Vixia HFR10, Sony Microphone ECM-MS907, Adobe Premiere, Camtasia Studio 7, Windows Movie Maker

One other welcome but unexpected benefit from this project has been lots of experience working with video equipment and video editing software. Though far from being an expert at it, I’ve at least become proficient, and can apply this knowledge to other aspects of my career. If you are an aspiring teacher and/or performer but don’t yet know how to record and edit a basic audition or recital video, start learning today! These skills will pay off in a variety of ways, some obvious and others not so obvious. To assist my own students in gaining this experience, I plan on making a brief video project an assignment for studio class next year.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my work on the Kopprasch Project, and would recommend similar projects to students and teachers. Yes, it is a lot of work, but the rewards are well worth it. I am also very thankful for the support and encouragement I’ve received from my viewers. Their unsolicited comments were very kind, and helped get me through some of the rough patches in this multi-year undertaking. Here are a few (authors’ names removed).

I have been enjoying your recordings of the Kopprasch etudes, as well as learning from them. As someone who picked up the horn after a 25-year hiatus, your Kopprasch videos are invaluable. I can’t thank you enough for taking the time and effort to publish these videos. I also read this blog avidly. It is truly amazing to have such resources at the tip of my fingertips; this was unthinkable for most of us at the time I laid down my horn so many years ago. Anyway, take care and thanks again!

I wanted to comment on your fine effort with the latest Kop. study – #40.  In reviewing the earlier studies I cannot help but notice a change in your playing which I suppose might come from more experience and confidence in doing more of these studies.  But I also wondered to what degree your change in equipment has also influenced matters – new mp rim, new horn – of what I can see.  I am quite convinced that your sound has changed; changes of various positions in your studio and perhaps better use of the recording equipment notwithstanding.
What I hear is a warmer, concentrated sound, with more liquid slurs, more compact attacks, and what also seems to be less effort reflected in a more pronounced sense of musicality (not that your previous efforts were not musical!).
I thought that you might appreciate the feedback.

Thank you for these recordings. They are fun and useful! Can I make a request? The horn players in Maryland would be very grateful to have a high quality recording of #49 and #50 as they are required to play those for the All-State audition in November. Could you please consider adding these to your wonderful blog? Thanks.

Great videos! I’ve been studying the Kopprasch method and this [sic] have really helped me getting through them, Greetings from Mexico!

I was really hoping you would continue your Kopprasch recordings onto book 2. They have been a amazing resource that I’ve been able to direct my section to.

Congratulations for continuing on this project. I’m sure a lot of horn students all over the world will enjoy.
Greetings from Portugal!
If you’re wondering what’s next, I don’t have any plans right now to record additional Kopprasch etudes, like the Op. 5 High Horn Studies, but I do have several ideas for tutorials on horn playing and chamber music in general. There are  several upcoming performances over the next few weeks, along with normal end-of-semester business like juries, exams, and final grades. I also have a backlog of recordings and publications to review. My summer plans include rest and relaxation, but also work on an article and a few arranging projects, as well as a brass trio performance at the International Women’s Brass Conference in June.
To be continued!
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