The Orchestra Woodwind and Brass

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1 The Orchestra minutes Program Synopsis Have you ever wondered what instruments make up an orchestra? In this program, Bobby, a young aspiring musician is introduced to different elements, roles and history of a variety of instruments in an orchestra. He is guided and informed by Strauss, the orchestra s conductor. Related Programs The Orchestra Conductor and Strings The Orchestra Percussion and Orchestral Diversity You may download and print one copy of these teacher notes from our website for your reference. Further copying or printing must be For more information please visit or contact customer service at or on

2 Teacher Notes: Robert Wrzaszcz B. Mus., Grad. Dip. Ed. (Sec.) Leigh Askew B.Mus, Grad Dip Ed (Sec), Grad Cert R.E Introduction Join Bobby and The Melbourne Grammar School Symphony Orchestra as Strauss teaches him about the woodwind and brass sections of the orchestra. Explore the history and development of the wind families, experience live performances from the flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, trumpet, French horn, trombone and tuba as various playing techniques and styles are demonstrated This program explores the use of wind instruments within and beyond the Symphony Orchestra, demonstrating the diverse utilization of wind instruments. Program Rationale This program explores what roles the woodwind and brass sections have in an orchestra. The humorous presentation makes this program both easy to understand and informative to all who are interested in how an orchestra functions. Program Timeline 00:00:00 Copyright Classroom Video Splash 00:00:00 Introduction 00:00:54 Woodwind and brass: History and development 00:06:02 Instruments of the woodwind family 00:11:26 Instruments of the brass family 00:17:26 Sound variation and playing techniques 00:22:44 Independence from the orchestra 00:27:33 Credits 00:28:35 End program Resources:

3 Program Worksheet Before the Program 1. As a group, identify, list and categorise the different brass and woodwind instruments of the orchestra. 2. Discuss where you have seen or heard brass or woodwind instruments. 3. Experiment with different sound production techniques typical of woodwind and brass instruments. Experiment with pitch change by blowing across the top of bottles with differing levels of fluid. Experiment with pitch change by blowing through plastic drinking straws, with the end cut to a point to emulate a reed, and covering the end of the straw. Buzz lips into a length of cardboard tubing to emulate buzzing into brass mouthpiece. (like a didgeridoo) Experiment with changing pitch by sliding a second tube over the first

4 During the Program 1. Define Aerophones. 2. Name two or more woodwind instruments that use a wooden reed to create their sound. 3. What is considered to be the first true woodwind instrument? 4. Which orchestral instrument was directly influenced by the Chalumeau? 5. What were some of the earliest flutes made of? 6. Which woodwind instrument is the descendent of the racket and curtal? 7. Which earlier instrument did the oboe descend from? 8. How do you change notes on a trombone? 9. Name four woodwind instruments of the orchestra

5 10. What instrument do the orchestra tune to and why? 11. Name the two double reed instruments of the orchestra. 12. Name four brass instruments of the orchestra. 13. What is the most common type of trumpet? 14. What is the purpose of valves on brass instruments? 15. What is the origin of the French Horn? 16. When was the tuba invented, and why is it significant? 17. What is the purpose of single tonguing? - 5 -

6 18. What are the three most common types of brass mute? 19. What other styles of music can woodwind and brass instruments be involved in? 20. Can you name at least one other type of group woodwind and brass instruments can be involved with? - 6 -

7 After the Program 1. Make a class list of as many different styles of music that Woodwind and/or Brass instruments can play. 2. Choose one instrument of the Woodwind and/or Brass family. Draw and label the parts on the instrument. 3. Research a famous composer who wrote music for wind instruments. Be sure to include: the full name of the composer, place and date of birth, the full name of five works by this composer. 4. Research one of the wind instruments of the orchestra. Be sure to include a labelled diagram of the instrument. State the range of the instrument. Name 5 famous people who played this instrument

8 Suggested Student Responses During the Program 1. Define Aerophones. Instruments that create their sound by the air that vibrates through them. 2. Name two or more woodwind instruments that use a wooden reed to create their sound. Clarinets Saxophone Oboe Bassoon 3. What is considered to be the first true woodwind instrument? Chalumeau 4. Which orchestral instrument was directly influenced by the Chalumeau? Clarinet 5. What were some of the earliest flutes made of? Bone 6. Which woodwind instrument is the descendent of the racket & curtal? Bassoon 7. Which earlier instrument did the oboe descend from? Shawm 8. How do you change notes on a trombone? By sliding the tubing up or down 9. Name four woodwind instruments of the orchestra. Flute Clarinet Oboe Bassoon 10. What instrument do the orchestra tune to and why? The oboe; because of its distinctive sound that can be heard over the top of other instruments. 11. Name the two double reed instruments of the orchestra. Oboe Bassoon 12. Name four brass instruments of the orchestra. Trumpet French Horn Trombone Tuba - 8 -

9 13. What is the most common type of trumpet? The trumpet pitched in B flat 14. What is the purpose of valves on brass instruments? To change notes by changing the path of air through different lengths of tubing. 15. What is the origin of the French Horn? Hunting horns of the 17 th Century 16. When was the Tuba invented, and why is it significant? It was invented in1835 and is significant because it is the lowest pitch instrument in the brass family. 17. What is the purpose of single tonguing? To give a clean attack on a note. 18. What are the three most common types of brass mute? The straight mute The cup mute The solo tone or Harmon mute 19. What other styles of music can woodwind and brass instruments be involved in? Jazz Dixieland Swing Bebop Cool jazz Hard bop Rock Jazz fusion 20. Can you name at least one other type of group woodwind and brass instruments can be involved with? Jazz band Marching band Concert Band Brass Band - 9 -

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