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Thread: Can I play both tenor horn and french horn??

  1. #1
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    Smile Can I play both tenor horn and french horn??

    Hi there,

    My tenor horn teacher has suggested I have a go at french horn after christmas, I currently play tenor horn to grade 7 standard and love it!, I would really like to play french horn but will I cope with the smaller mouth piece and different fingering?, also will I have to transpose it?? And what is the Bb and F key about?

    Any other tenor and french horn players out there?
    Thanks!!

  2. #2

    Maestro's Avatar
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    I believe that the mounted bands in the Army manage to combine the two.
    Kev Mann
    Ex Player


    Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.- Victor Hugo.

  3. #3
    tMP Prime Friend trumpetmike's Avatar
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    Perfectly possible to play both - don't worry about the Bb/F thing, it will make sense after a few lessons.
    Likewise the fingering - a lot of it will seem familiar and will make sense in time.

    If you choose the right mouthpiece, the difference isn't as large as it could be

  4. #4
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    Thanks for your feedback! I can't wait to start playing

  5. #5
    tMP Friend in Training Hornator's Avatar
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    A french horn DW4 mouthpiece has a very similar size rim shape and cup diameter to the tenor horn mouthpiece. But this is a very large mouthpiece for french horn and will require a strong pair of 'chops'. A DW5 would probably be a better choice so you can alternate between F horn and tenor without causing a dramatic change on your lips.

    Enjoy!

  6. #6
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    I played both for around 4 years and had no major issues (other than the limits of my own ability!)

    The fingering isn't that different between the two really, only a few changes. The Bb/F, as has been said, is just something that you will get used to the more you play!
    Ross Baxter
    2nd Cornet - Penclawdd Brass

  7. #7
    tMP Senior Friend cockaigne's Avatar
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    A word of caution. I'm not saying it can't be done, because it can - Mike certainly knows what he's talking about - but these are very different instruments.

    Aside from the change in mouthpiece, and the switch from right-hand to left-hand 'drive', the french horn consists of almost twice as much plumbing. Not only does this affect the harmonics you're playing on (which you've already noticed in terms of the different fingering) but also the way the instrument responds.

    This isn't mean to discourage you from having a go, as I think you should - but please don't be put off if you find it difficult! Perseverance pays off though - the main thing is that, as you said, you want to give it a try.
    Jack Smith
    Conductor & Trombonist

    www.jdsmusic.co.uk
    Brass Band Results

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