The Significance of Chamber Music

I consider chamber music to be one of the best teachers of musicality. Throughout my musical career I have found that playing in a small group without a designated leader, such as a conductor, forced me to learn to make musical decisions on my own based on what I was taught and what made most sense with the musical phrases. I believe that having playing experiences in chamber groups makes a bassoonist a much better orchestral musician, as they are attuned to the sounds and roles of the players around them and have the skills to better play with them. 

Because of these beliefs, I strive to implement chamber playing into my teaching philosophy as much as possible. In addition to solos and orchestral repertoire, I push my students to explore parts from significant wind quintet repertoire, mostly because it is the most common instrumentation written for chamber bassoon and because the bassoon has such a versatile role in the ensemble. I use excerpts to supplement technical exercises to keep things fresh and to offer different angles other than just etudes and orchestral excerpts.