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Protocol: A Guide to the Collegiate Audition Process for Trombone Book
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This instrument or product has been carefully played/used and returned to us in
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Amati Model 351 C ClarinetIdeal for school orchestra program or the church musician, the Amati C clarinet is a great sounding and affordable instrument. Made with hand-selected grenadilla wood and comfortable key work. Each instrument is fully serviced and play tested before shipping. Amati is a Czech company that manufactures fine European high-quality woodwind and brass musical instruments (both piston and rotary valves). Amati has a highly skilled work force with a strong tradition in instrument manufacturing that dates to the 18th century, as well as the modern technology needed to manufacture band instruments and remain competitive on the world stage.
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Occasionally, I need to perform music written for a "C" clarinet in Church, orchestral, and chamber group settings. I have never been very confident at sight transposition and consequently always write out the transposed part for performance. This exercise gets old quickly. I was looking for an inexpensive instrument that plays well and in tune. I am amazed how well the Amati "C" clarinet performs. The adjustable thumb rest is an unexpected benefit. I have had several individuals that play with me comment that they cannot tell the difference from when I am playing the Amati "C" clarinet or the Buffet R-13 B flat clarinet. Overall, I am very satisfied with the value and playing pleasure this instrument affords me.
I've been playing this clarinet on and off on the rare occasions that I need a C clarinet (including occasionally substituting for a flute duing a wind choir or violin for a pit orchestra that I'm currently playing in).
The craftmanship is really pretty good, and overall tone is competent, although unremarkable. Intonation is generally pretty consistent throughout the compass of the instrument's range-- except in the altissimo range. Notes above high D#/Eb tend to play extremely flat (almost a full half tone low). However, for the price, and unless you will be consistently playing in the extreme upper range of this clarinet, this C clarinet would be hard to beat.
I first learned about the C Clarinet in the Cambridge Companion to the Clarinet, ed. Colin Lawson. All clarinet players should have a copy. I then found an old Holton C Clarinet which was indeed strange and difficult to play with cramped key work. So I was very gratified to find that the Amati C plays easily, has comfortable key work, although it has more of the early "clarino" timbre, and is very responsive. Mine is in very good tune. Throat tones are accurate, no need for right hand down. Tone is sweeter and lends itself to more emotion, with an especially effective p-ppp range, ideal for chamber music. It is too bad that the C Clarinet does not have more contemporary literature. I am using it when writing my own charts, and I note that others are using it to cover oboe parts. It would certainly be easier for a youngster to play than the Bb, both in terms of air stream and fingering, but alas, it doesn't fit very well in the school band. Just remember, it does not sound like a Bb in the Key of C-- it is an entirely different instrument with a sound all its own.
This c clarinet is dynamite. Just got it today and it plays beautifully out of the box. I used to have one 3-5 years ago but was not totally happy with the tuning. I heard that they had made improvements and they sure have. The tuning using the mouthpiece that comes with it is great. I wished they made a hard rubber version. I use it in church to play the oboe part as we don't have an oboe player yet.
I have had mine for two years now. I play on it with my new Pyne ~M mouthpiece and recently had a barrel custom made for it by Wes Rice. The horn is awesome. I have played "Russian Easter" with it as well as several Mozart arias all with ease and people have commented on the appropriate tone quality particularly for the Mozart arias. The custom barrel has made the extreme high register so much easier to play and even better in tune.(it was pretty good before the barrel!) The custom barrel I am using is 1mm longer than the stock and is a composite material.
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