Friday, August 27, 2004

Embouchure....are you sure?

I'm sure you've all heard of the term embouchure sometime in your life. Whether it was in grade school band, high school band, or just because. Well, you may know it as the way you hold your lips when playing an instrument but there's more to it than that. According to the New Harvard Dictionary of Music, 4th ed. , it also involves your facial muscles and jaw. The embouchure is one of three parts to playing a wind instrument. The other two parts are the air supply and the management of air by the player. According to Grove Music Online, "the muscles operate upon an underlying supporting structure which incorporates the jaws and teeth." Here is a figure to better understand the area i'm talking about. The value of sound that comes out of the instrument depends on the position the mouthpiece is placed, the players embouchure comfort, embouchure potential, and how easy it is for the player to blow into the intrument.