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Greg Spence

Hey Jutta, welcome back and hope all is well.

Here is a snippet from another thread that demonstrates the ups and down you will experience:

I posted back in November that I had gone back to the beginning again. That worked fine and then the Ultimate level came out. I would some days get the Ab and somedays nowhere near. I could still feel I was not quite there so went back again through the early stuff making copious notes along the way and doing each exercise as if I was a beginner. This has been equally frustrating some days, but even having been through it a few times there were still things I had missed. The emphasis on the instrument playing you was one example. After a couple of weeks of this I have got to Allegro F and today that was as it should be. I have done a fresh set of PPCs and been meticulous about process and results, sometimes contrasting the two approaches. Last week I was playing duets and felt myself control pitch with the aperture corners in a normal playing situation. This is a first and different to whatever I have been doing for the past 50 years+(with 20 year break).Trying to do to all the progress exercises with slurs and tongue each day leaves me with the face muscles feeling as if they have been through a tough workout. This is also a recent development and left me so stiff on Tuesday I could hardly play as I was so comfortable on Monday I was stretching myself in the repertoire beyond my normal limitations. Yesterday was easier and today was flying. Learning to back off rather than blow harder makes a big difference in the upper register but playing louder is a point of conflict and the chops sometimes cannot sustain the volume in what is effectively a new embouchure. The key thing is everything is better when I get to band. I am totally focused on opening the throat. I feel that is me achilles heel, putting my foot in my mouth!!

Yep, totally thrilled to have the Ultimate Level up, it’s aHUGE amount of time and joyous effort putting it all together.

If you achieved something once, you WILL find it again. Going back to the start and patiently working through it IS the answer and when you find “it” again it will be more familiar and easier to repeat. Stick with it!


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