Thursday, March 30, 2017

(Video) Focal Embouchure Dystonia and Playing Other Instruments

When you have musician's dystonia, a lot of friends and colleagues try to encourage you to find another instrument. Let me tell you, that isn't easy, and for a number of reasons. First being...nothing can come close to the love you have for your primary instrument. For me, horn is the best, and everything else doesn't come close. Not that I haven't given other instruments a shot. I grew up learning multiple instruments. Guitar is my second love, and it also doesn't come close to horn.

I enjoy practicing on other instruments, and I have to because I'm a teacher! However, my embouchure dystonia still effects me on other instruments to a certain degree. Some instruments are easier to play (i.e. trumpet, flute), and other instruments harder (i.e. tuba, trombone, euphonium). But just because some of the instruments are easier to play, doesn't mean I have the chops to master the instrument even if I wanted to. 

I want to show you what my embouchure looks like when I play other instruments. I don't talk much in the videos; except on the trumpet and trombone one. I think it is good to show how my focal dystonia still effects my playing from instrument to instrument. I can still  play to a certain degree on each instrument, but only if I focus on less tension....which means a more relaxed embouchure formation, and not stabilized at all. I show this really well on the trumpet video and explain it in detail. 

Let me know what you think of my new blog layout (should I go back to the previous design?), and if these videos give any insight. I'm not sure if these videos can show much...but I still think it's important to post them and analyze them, as not many people post recordings of themselves playing other related-instruments while having focal embouchure dystonia! :-)