CLARINET to OBOE

 

    Clarinet The biggest difference between the oboe and clarinet is that the clarinet has a single reed and a plastic mouthpiece that are held together with a ligature. On clarinet, a single reed creates vibrations against the clarinet mouthpiece. On oboe, two reeds vibrate against each other to make sound. With the clarinet embouchure the top teeth make contact with the top of the mouthpiece and the lower lip makes contact with reed. With the oboe the lips hold the reed and the teeth should not have any direct contact with the reed on either side of the reed.  Since biting the reed with the teeth is a very bad habit on the oboe, you need to pay attention to whether or not you are chomping down on the reed when switching from the clarinet to the oboe. And, a clarinet player will need to get used to having both of their lips vibrating while playing instead of just their bottom lip.

    The chin and lip formation for the clarinet embouchure is the most similar to the oboe because of the common angle that is used when holding the two instruments. The clarinet embouchure has a more relaxed chin that is less drawn back than the oboe embouchure. A clarinet player will notice right away that the clarinet reed and mouthpiece are much larger than the oboe reed. As a result, the smaller size of the oboe reed may take some getting used to and a clarinet player will want to focus the lips into the center of the mouth more to make up for the size difference. The most significant differences are that the teeth are not used in the oboe embouchure and no leaking of air can occur on the oboe because the lips are supposed to be sealed around the oboe’s reed. Although a clarinet player may be able to create sound while leaking air from the corners of their mouth, this will not work on the oboe.  So if a player is in the habit of leaking air on a clarinet, this habit will have to change when moving to the oboe.

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