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Clarinets for 7 year olds

Discussion in 'Music' started by GillP, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. GillP

    GillP New commenter

    Hi

    We have a kinder clarinet at school that a parent donated. An 8 year old pupil has just started on it and is doing well. I now have a (very tall) 7 year old wanting to start. I have budget left this year to buy an instrument for her to hire but am wondering if anyone knows the difference/pros/cons between a kinder clarinet and a Lyons clarinet. I know the kinder is in E flat and the Lyons is in C but is there something else I should consider? The kinders seem to be more expensive. I have a feeling some of you are going to say, neither...wait until she's 10, but I'm all for starting them when they're keen!

    Any advice/opinions would be great
    Thanks
     
  2. GillP

    GillP New commenter

    Hi

    We have a kinder clarinet at school that a parent donated. An 8 year old pupil has just started on it and is doing well. I now have a (very tall) 7 year old wanting to start. I have budget left this year to buy an instrument for her to hire but am wondering if anyone knows the difference/pros/cons between a kinder clarinet and a Lyons clarinet. I know the kinder is in E flat and the Lyons is in C but is there something else I should consider? The kinders seem to be more expensive. I have a feeling some of you are going to say, neither...wait until she's 10, but I'm all for starting them when they're keen!

    Any advice/opinions would be great
    Thanks
     
  3. bod99

    bod99 New commenter

    The lyons clarinet is now called the Clarineo (unless you get an older 2nd hand model). Advantages are 1) it weighs just 8 oz, 2) it's nearly impossible to put the reed in the wrong place 3) it's in C so easier to write for in bands etc, 4) easy repairs by snapping on new key. Disadvantages: less keys (no alternatives for B/C upper register etc).
    One of my 6 yr old clarinettists played her clarineo (actually old model Lyons) at the National Festival of Music for Youth today and has just romped through grade 1. Don't wait if they're keen!
     
  4. I started playing the clarinet about 9 years old. My first clarinet was a cheap rented one, but it was a proper clarinet - In Bb with all the keys and so on.

    I admit I don't know much at all about these new clarinets of which you speak, but they sound to me like a marketing gimmick more than anything else. If the child is going to learn the clarinet, then surely it's best to start on a proper instrument. - They need to learn the right technique and so on from the get go. If they fall into bad habits they will be nearly impossible to break later on.

    I don't think 7 is too young at all, and definitely get them when they're keen!
     
  5. bod99

    bod99 New commenter

    If you have no experience with the clarineo then don't give an opinion. They use clarinet fingering (with the only difference being 2 fewer little finger keys). The reeds are the same, the technique is the same, it allows them to be able to hold it properly without the huge weight of a Bb clarinet and so develop a good stance. It's very annoying to see people criticising something they have not tried. I have currently got 7 yr 1 and 2 pupils on these instruments, with 5 getting to grade 1 in 30 lessons, and have used them for around 10 years with great success. The children are able to switch to the Bb with no problems and many comment how they enjoyed starting with the lighter, more easily assembled instrument first when they were younger/smaller. Many 7 yr olds won't have big enough hands to cope with the stretch/weight of the Bb and so will develop poor technique and stance. I have a 9 yr old who still uses a clarineo as she is tiny. Just passed grade 2 with flying colours and loves playing in bands and with others.
     
  6. http://www.clarineo.co.uk/ -- looks good to me -- I'm going to buy one tomorrow and try it out!
     
  7. Are you using the new Clarineo or the old Lyons C Clarinet? We got lots of the old Lyons ones in years ago when I was at another school and I admit that they weren't in very condition when they arrived. I seemed to be forever fiddling with them and mending them because of spring problems and pads not seating well.
    I would love to start using the Clarineo with year 1 and 2s. Do you find them reliable and sturdy enough to withstand a year 1 or 2 student? Have you tried the Clarineo group teaching method that they sell?
    I'm not sure about the Eb clarinets as they still have quite a bit of weight to them whereas the Clarineo has no weight issues for the right hand thumb or the teeth.
    I would welcome your input. Trying to decide what is best at the moment for building up woodwind playing in the school from Sept 2013 onwards.
     
  8. bod99

    bod99 New commenter

    I use a mix of old and new with my pupils. Both good. Clarineo seems more robust, but harder to repair yourself. I use standard books - try the Sarah Watts clarinet stuff. It comes with Bb accompaniments, but you can use the transpose button on a keyboard to solve that, and use the speedshifter software from ABRSM to play CDs at the right pitch.
    Please don't buy the white clarineos - they look like cheap toys. The black ones look much more professional.
    Good luck!
     
  9. gilly33

    gilly33 New commenter

    Hi.
    I just said up thread I don't know of any research. The results I mentioned are the results that the dentists found examining kids teeth over the years.
    I know of one (I have several dentist associates through a family members practice), who expressed concerns about future claims against teachers and music depts.
    Finally, I know many woodwind teachers as my husband is a musician and educator and they all say the same, as do the conservatoire teachers we know.
    We also have a daughter who began playing at age 8 and were EVEN told during the sale of said clarinet, by the young sales assistant, whom I presume was not a qualified woodwind teacher.
    But its fine, I'm not trying to stop anybody from doing anything. After all you are the professionals its hardly your fault if your training provider didn't tell you of this.
    As a teacher myself I think its important to share good practice and certainly if you are aware of something detrimental to a childs health I think it important to speak out.
    I am so glad my husband and my daughters other teachers knew of this, its just a pity that other children will suffer because teachers need to see research.
     
  10. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    As I understand it this thing with the teeth is something that people used to think was a problem but which probably isn't. There are people who believe you mustn't ever try a brass intsrument, for example, until the second teeth are fully formed, but when enquiring amongst some specialists, as my son, then 8, was interested in learning, they told me there was no basis in fact for this belief. Also, even when the second teeth are thorugh, and look finished, they're actually not. They are very moveable and relatively soft for quite a few years, so if there were a problem with wind instruments it would remain at least into the child's teenage years. My top teeth point slightly inwards which is undoubtedly because I learnt the clarinet at a very young age. Except that I didn't!
     
  11. bod99

    bod99 New commenter

    I have taught on C clarinets for over 13 years and not one of my current or ex pupils have had any problems, now or since. Stop scaremongering. As the previous poster said - if you're going to be paranoid about teeth then you shouldn't start any kind of wind/brass instrument until you're well into your teens.
    Someone's husband being a musician and teacher does NOT qualify them to tell everyone to stop learning woodwind instruments until their teeth are fully settled (n.b. wisdom teeth don't even arrive until late teens).
    I'm sure there are plenty of views on both sides, but until you show me ACTUAL facts then I really think it should be left to people to make their own choice. Do hold your opinion, but don't force it on others, particularly those with experience in this area.
    I started bassoon at 7 and so you can imagine how horrific my teeth are. NOT.
    Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr @ people taking the joy out of learning instruments.

     
  12. bod99

    bod99 New commenter

    p.s. I'm intruiged that you let your daughter start playing at 8 if everyone you have ever met has advised against it. How much extra have you paid out for remedial dental work so far?
     

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