Description: Method books are a major means by which musicians study techniques and performance practices of the past. In addition to being practical tools for learning one's craft, these books serve as a historical reference into the minds of famous performers and teachers. Today's use of nineteenth century method books ensures the instructional lineages of famous clarinetists are carried forward. However, clarinet researchers and historians would be remiss if they did not also record and preserve the distinctive methods of the twentieth century's most effective performers and teachers. Elsa Ludewig-Verdehr is one such clarinetist who has established herself as a substantial twentieth century figure through (1) her performance record, (2) her students' performance and teaching record, and (3) her involvement in the international clarinet community. Review of current literature indicates four articles, five biographic dictionary entries, and one dissertation observation and interview about Dr. Verdehr's methods exist. These sources honor her, provide biographical information, and reference the tenets of her teaching philosophy; however, they do not discuss her detailed methodology or specific pedagogical exercises. Therefore, this text seeks to answer questions about Dr. Verdehr's teaching philosophy and clarinet method in order to record and preserve her life's work. This text provides transcription of over 150 handwritten exercises with primary source commentary. Interview explanations from Dr. Verdehr are combined with analysis of over thirty pages of handwritten material to assemble the first publication of The Verdehr Method: A Suggested Approach and Guide to Studying the Clarinet – Exercises for the Development of Tone, Technique, and Tonguing.
Date: August 2018
Creator: Daffinee, Jennifer Mendez