Practicing Beethoven’s 4th Symphony: Concluding Remarks (Accompaniment and Drones). This video series (BDP#77-80) discusses performance techniques and practice methods for the sixteenth note passages in the fourth movement. By Terry B. Ewell. Bassoon Digital Professor # 70.

<music: 1st Sixteenth Note Passage in Beethoven's 4th Symphony, Last Movement>

<music: 1st Solo>

<music: 2nd Solo>

<music: Last Sixteenth Note Passage>

Well, last of all I want to encourage you to practice this with a MIDI file or mp3 file. I have created some that are available on the International Double Reed Society website. These available for everyone whether you are a member or not.

One of the things that was so shocking for me (yes, I had listened to the piece many times, yes, I had practiced it for many years) is when you are playing in the orchestra for the first time it is so strange entering on that solo, on the big major solo with the grace note. You really have to memorize how the strings come in. You don't enter on a downbeat you enter on the second beat. So getting used to that --rehearsing it over and over and over--till you are really comfortable, until you do it automatically can be really helpful. So I encourage you to do that.

The next thing about he MIDI files is that you can grab those and you may have software where you can vary the tempo. [In addition,] I have given some different tempos on the website. Do practice it with the MIDI file as well.

Last of all, it is not a bad idea to practice this with drones--a drone sounding pitch--so you that you are listening to your intonation.

We tend to on bassoon get stuck with favoring certain notes over others. When tend to listen to tone quality sometimes more than intonation.
Watching your intonation in addition to your tonguing and everything I think will be helpful. Always play with a good tone, even when it is technically challenging,

Well, I hope all of this has been helpful to you.