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Thread: Request Advice about Playing Recorder with Cello

  1. #1
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    May 2021
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    Default Request Advice about Playing Recorder with Cello

    I am new to this forum, and frankly don't know much about classical music except several years of choral experience and a bit of recorder. So, I am on a steep learning curve. Please forgive any uninformed questions and comments!

    I am posting here because I have a new friend who is a cello player, and he suggested we try some recorder/cello duets. I can play basic soprano recorder but have never tried anything very complex, and have a tiny bit of experience with alto recorders.

    I've been googling for soprano/cello sheet music, but before I purchase anything, I wanted to get some general guidance. So here goes:

    1) For a duet with a cello, do you think a soprano or alto recorder would be better, or does it not matter? As mentioned, I am not very familiar with the alto, but could learn it if it was worth the time.

    2) I didn't own a recorder for a long time, and when I repurchased one a few years ago I just got a very inexpensive plastic no-name one from Amazon. I am have a hard time with high notes, and by high I mean G5 or above (hitting it reliably and getting it to sound decent). I imagine this is a combination of my skill level and the quality of the instrument. Do you think buying a better recorder would help significantly with high notes? If so, any recommendations? I don't want to spend hundreds of dollars, but I can certainly invest more than the $10 or so this one cost me.

    Any other recommendations would be most welcome too, including specific pieces. Thanks for your patience as I get started with this!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Enthalpy's Avatar
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    Apr 2020
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    Welcome, Allie!

    Many scores are available for free on the Web. Search something like
    "free score"
    and a piece, a composer, a couple of instruments...

    If you don't find a score for the exact instruments, take a score for different instruments, and
    • Play the score on your instrument(s) a vista
    • Or rewrite the parts by hand on paper
    • Or rewrite the parts using software. Lilypond is free but difficult, others are easier.

    Bowed instruments can play very softly, so they fit a recorder. It's only uncomfortable.
    In Brittany, it rains only on idiots.
    You just write French exactly like you spell it. Very simple!
    In the Navy, one must salute everything that moves and paint the rest.
    I wish so dearly Mozart were still alive! And his music already dead.

  3. #3
    Senior Member thejewk's Avatar
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    Sep 2020
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    I highly recommend the Yamaha Ecodear series of recorders for high quality plastic instruments with good playability and tone. As for soprano or alto, there is masses of repertoire from the Baroque period for alto and almost none for soprano. You can find many pieces for alto with basso continuo, and I think you would be best served looking in that direction if that's the sort of repertoire you find interesting.

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