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Many of the exercises in this book are designed to target the most difficult hand stopping combinations, such as the transition from open b-flat′ to fully stopped a-flat′. It turns out that many of the more difficult hand stopping transitions are also difficult valve combinations, so it is very useful to play these exercises on natural horn and Valved Horn.
For further information on hand stopping and Natural Horn in general, Dauprat’s Method for Cor Alto and Cor Basse is the most complete reference work. Oscar Franz’s Method also extols the virtues of hand horn study and contains a few natural horn etudes. For more advanced study, practice Gallay’s etudes and preludes on hand horn. It is my hope that these exercises will serve as a starting point for horn players and teachers to incorporate hand horn study into their playing and teaching to provide a solid foundation for valve horn study and to carry on the wonderful history and tradition of this noble instrument.
Bruce Atwell serves as an Assistant Professor of Horn at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. Dr. Atwell is currently Principal Horn for the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra and performs with many other orchestras in Wisconsin. He was acting Fourth Horn with the Philadelphia Orchestra during the 1997 season and has performed with the Cincinnati Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony, the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony, and the Cincinnati Ballet Orchestra. He has held positions with the Florida Symphony, the Hong Kong Philharmonic and the University of Florida.