Oboe/5th grader w/ oboe


I have a Vivatone by Linton oboe HRS 43709 V that I played in high school. My daughter is in the 5th grade now and is trying to use this oboe in beginning band. She is having a very difficult time getting sound to come out consistently. She is also the only oboist in the group of 26 kids, so she doesn't have any resources at school. She is using a wooden reed and practices long tones; however, she gets light headed and discouraged. She doesn't want to stop however. I started oboe in the 5th grade, but I think the oboe I used then was a rental and I think it was a "beginner" oboe. I am wondering if a "beginner" oboe would be helpful to get her started or if you have any suggestions on oboe brands, technique, etc. THANK YOU so much!!


The difficulty your daughter is having maintaining a sound could be either the oboe is not air tight and covering properly or the reeds are not vibrating easily enough for her. The oboe if it is in good shape should perfect for her unless her hands are very small or she finds it heavy to hold.
I would suggest reeds need to be the priority and here the teacher ought to be able to help.
A change to a student lighter weight oboe may help but I think, reeds first. If you played yourself can you not try the set up yourself to see if all is well. There should be no huge pressure required to play. If there is then it will be very discouraging for her. So light and easy reeds are the answer.
Hope this helps a bit



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Geoffrey Bridge


Professional oboist with many years experience. Former pupil of Leon Goossens. Solo artist for Arts Council of Great Britain. Freelance recitalist/broadcasting/orchestras. Former Head of woodwind teaching in Hampshire, England. Questions on repertoire, playing styles, reeds, cane selection and processing.


St Andrews University Royal College of Music, Aberdeen College of Education Licenciate of the Royal Academy of Music General Teaching Council certificate Broadcast solo recitals/performed with major symphony orchestras/Music Club recitals/writings on double reed matters

Chairman and Trustee of the British Double Reed Society International Double Reed Society Association Hautbois Francais Orchestral Manager of Southern Pro Musica Orchestra/Aberdeen Sinfonietta

Double Reed News/Australasian Double Reed Society magazine/International Double Reed Society

LRAM, Cert Ed

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