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Trombone Studio

Trombone Studio PracticeTrombone students at the University of Kansas receive individualized instruction in applied lessons. In addition to developing technique and musicianship through study of appropriate literature in the applied lesson setting, trombone students participate in master classes, orchestral excerpt coaching sessions, trombone choir, and chamber music (such as trombone quartets and brass quintets). Trombone pedagogy classes are offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels. pedagogy classes are geared to assist students in diagnosing performance problems, developing teaching strategies, implementing studio curriculum development, and finding instructional resources.

Trombone Studio Performing

KU trombone studio members have achieved success in performance venues. Current studio members auditioned and earned positions in the Disneyland All-American College Band, Topeka Symphony Orchestra, the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra, the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra (Guangdong Province, PRC), the Fountain City Brass Band, the Boulevard Big Band, and U.S. national guard and reserve armed forces bands, to name a few. They have earned recognition at MTNA, Asia Trombone Seminar, Kansas Federation of Music Clubs, DownBeat and International Trombone Association solo competitions. Recent graduates also hold teaching positions in schools and universities throughout the region.

  1. Apply for admission to KU, with a music degree as a major, visit  Admissions » to visit the Office of Admissions page. November 1 and December 1 are the academic scholarship deadlines, visit   Affordability » for more scholarship information. Be sure to submit your application form and audition time form at least three weeks before your preferred audition time. Times are confirmed by phone.
  2. Admittance letters will be sent out after audition, and scholarship award notifications will be mailed in April.
  3. All students must audition for admittance to music degrees. Music scholarships are awarded to students majoring in music. Music majors are not fully accepted until a report of a satisfactory audition has been submitted to the School of Music.
  4.  Accompanists are optional for trombone auditions.

General Audition Requirements for tenor trombone: Bordogni-Rochut Melodious Etude #6, PLUS one piece from the selected list below or a work of comparable difficulty:

  • Barat - Andante et Allegro
  • Galliard - Sonata No. 1
  • Saint Saëns - Cavatine
  • Guilmant - Morceau Symphonique
  • Boda - Sonatina

General Audition Requirements for bass trombone: Bordogni-Rochut Melodious Etude #6, PLUS one piece from the selected list below or a work of comparable difficulty:

  • Bach - "Sarabande" from Cello Suites No. 5
  • Lebedev - Concerto in One Movement
  • McCarty - Sonata
  • White - Sonatina
  • Hindemith - Drei liechte Stücke

Auditions can be done live, or via tape (exceptional circumstances).

Audition dates are February 9 & 16, 2013. If these dates are not convenient, please contact Michael Davidson. Those who audition will receive a free lesson after the audition. The successful trombone auditionee will demonstrate "teachability," the desire to learn and receive instruction.

  1. Achieve good balance and posture! Make sure that your horn is held comfortably, with all the weight held by the left hand. This will make moving your slide much easier. Stand or sit comfortably in a position that allows for freedom of movement.
  2. Blow the air freely - don't force the sound. Some players will, at times, use the tongue as a substitute for the air - this is always a BAD idea! In general, think "more air, less tongue." When playing, try to blow the tongue out of the way with the air.
  3. Practice active listening.
  4. Make sure your instrument is in good working order. Bad habits will creep in because of faulty equipment. If you slide doesn't move smoothly, well, you're in trouble and at risk of developing some REALLY BAD performance habits.
  5. Do something every day that will develop your technical skills - practice scales every day. Do them slowly (for correct intonation), then at a fast tempo (for technique).
  6. Do something every day that will allow you to develop your singing skills. The ability to ACCURATELY sing intervals and melodic lines has direct bearing on your level of success as performer. Be accurate - don't approximate.
  7. Overact. Be melodramatic - expand your dynamic and expressive capabilities - remember, you are executing a dynamic change only when your audience can tell!
Notable Visitors

Here is just a sample of renowned past visiting trombone performers here at KU:

  • Joseph Alessi, Principal Trombonist, New York Philharmonic/The Julliard School
  • Ronald Barron, Principal Trombonist (retired), Boston Symphony Orchestra
  • Bill Booth, UCLA/Principal Trombonist, L.A. Opera/L.A. studios - trombonist
  • Corpus Quartet: Andrs Sütoö, Péter Paálinkás, Róbert Káip, Gábor Görög-Hegyi
  • Dr. JoDee Davis, trombone professor, the University of Missouri - Kansas City
  • John Fedchock, jazz trombonist/composer
  • Dave Glenn, jazz trombonist/composer
  • Randall Hawes, Bass Trombonist, Detroit Symphony Orchestra
  • Porter Wyatt Henderson, Associate Principal Trombonist, Kansas City Symphony
  • Dr. Gustav Hoena, Franz Liszt Academy of Music, Budapest, Hungary
  • Dr. Tim Howe, trombone professor, University of Missouri-Columbia
  • Dr. Paul Hunt, Kansas State University
  • Thomas Klaber, bass trombonist, Cleveland Orchestra
  • Lance LaDuke, trombonist, Boston Brass
  • Dr. Drew Leslie, visiting assistant professor of trombone, The University of Missouri - Columbia
  • Dr. Peter Madsen, trombone professor, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • Elliot Mason, trombonist, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, jazz faculty, Northwestern University
  • Dr. William Mathis, trombone professor, Bowling Green State University
  • Ilan Morgenstern, Bass Trombonist, San Antonio Symphony and Houston Grand Opera orchestras
  • Graeme Mutchler, Bass Trombonist, Utah Symphony
  • Roger Oyster, Principal Trombonist, Kansas City Symphony
  • Gerry Pagano, Bass Trombonist, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
  • William Rose, trombone professor, McNeese State University
  • Steve Shires, S.E. Shires custom trombones
  • Gerald Sloane, trombone professor, University of Arkansas
  • Dr. J. Mark Thompson, trombone professor, Northwestern State University of Louisiana
  • USAF "Brass in Blue"
  • David Vining, trombone professor, Northern Arizona University


Trombone Solos and Ensembles Recommended for KSMEA Performance:
A Selective Annotated Database (pdf)

For more information contact: Michael Davidson


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