Brass Intruments Lessons in Mississauga
Learn to play Trumpet, Horn, Trombone, Tuba
Brass Instruments Lessons
The Mississauga Fine Arts Academy offers private in-person and online brass instruments music lessons for anyone looking for trumpet lessons, french horn lessons or any other instruments in the brass family. We offer beginner and advanced level lessons for anyone interested in learning to play brass instruments.
If you’ve been looking for music lessons and have narrowed it down to any of the brass instruments don’t delay your learning journey. We encourage you to join the Mississauga Fine Arts Academy music family.
As you'll see later in this text our music school has some of the best brass instrument teachers in Ontario. Teachers who are knowledgeable, patient and talented musicians, but also music educators with many years of teaching experience. We strive to match our students with the best instructor for them; a skilled instructor who will encourage them to want to learn their chosen instrument, to enjoy the learning process and to grow in their overall music education.
Our music school offers a cutting-edge curriculum developed in collaboration with the Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM). This gives our students access to a nationally accredited program and provides a solid foundation in music education.
Our music teachers will prepare you for every level of your Royal Conservatory of Music examinations (RCM exams), starting from grade 1 to grade 10, including the teacher’s and performer’s ARCT exams.
A few interesting facts about brass instruments
- The principle brass instruments in a symphony orchestra would include the trumpet, the french horn, the trombone and the tuba
- They are classified as aerophone and wind instruments
- The brass instruments, as the name implies, are made of brass, however, some can be made of nickel silver or nickel bronze, and they can also be silver or gold plated
- Their ancestors many years ago were made of wood, animal horns or shells
- They are essentially very long metal tubes that may be coiled or twisted into many different shapes
- If you straighten a french horn its metal tube would be about seventeen feet long, the trumpet would be four to five feet long, the trombone nine to thirteen feet and the tuba sixteen to twenty-six feet long
- On one end of the metal tube these instruments have a cup-shaped mouthpiece that has variations depending on the instrument
- The other end of the metal tube flares out into a “bell”
How to play brass instruments
- To play a brass instrument the musician will compress his/her lips in the mouthpiece and force air through the lips (embouchure), making them vibrate (often referred to as a “buzz” or “buzzing”). Maintaining an effective embouchure is an important skill for all brass students.
- This vibration from the lips is amplified by the mouthpiece, then transferred into the metal tube causing the column of air inside the tube to vibrate, producing the sound of the instrument
- To play different notes (change the pitch) there are valves or a slide (as in a trombone) that extend or decrease the length of the vibrating air column
- The longer the tube the lower the notes, the shorter the tube the higher the notes
- Other ways brass players would influence the pitch is by “overblowing”, or in other words by increasing the tension of the lips and the pressure of the player’s breath
Check out this video on TED-Ed by Al Cannon about playing brass instruments:
The trumpet has been around for over 3000 years. The first trumpet-like instruments were made of ram or ox horns, elephant tusks or seashells.
Ceramic trumpet, CE 300, Larco Museum Collection Lima, Peru
In the Middle Ages, the trumpets were long straight metal tubes without valves and had flared bells. In the fifteenth century, the instrument makers learned how to bend brass instruments leading to the oval-shaped coil form of the trumpet as we know it today. The valves were added in the early 1800s.
Various types of brass instrument mutes can be placed in or over the bell, to decrease the volume or to change the timbre of the trumpet. Different types of brass instrument mutes give a particular sound to the instrument.
Some of the brass Instrument mutes include:
- The Derby Hat mute - looks like a derby hat
- The Stop mute (used by the French horn) and
- The Practice mute
Seashell trumpet AD 300-900 found in Mexico
Silver and gold plated trumpet and its wooden mute from the tomb of Tutankhamun (1326–1336 BCE)
This video describes some other different kinds of brass instrument mutes:
The trumpets traditionally were used in military music and in ceremonial functions. They were used mainly for signals and fanfares. In the 17th century, the opera composers began including trumpets in the orchestra, where they were often paired with percussion instruments like the kettledrums (timpani) for festive or martial effects.
Today the trumpet is an instrument that can call people to attention in a powerful and dramatic way.
Types of Trumpets
- The Bb Trumpet was invented in the early 1900s in France and it’s arguably one of the most common types of brass instruments
- The C Trumpet has a slightly brighter sound
- Bb Pocket Trumpet has tubing that is tighter than usual which delivers its pocket size and its unique and more refined sound
- The Flugelhorn is a German trumpet created in the early 19th century known for its softer sound used for playing jazz and ballads
- The pTrumpet is made fully out of plastic giving it lightness and durability, used a lot by beginner students
- The D Trumpet was introduced in 1861 and used in Baroque music, later on, it was used as an addition to other brass instruments due to its piercing sound but not used as a solo instrument
- The Piccolo Trumpet is the smallest trumpet with a higher sound and four valves
- The Bugle is a valveless trumpet used in the military
Famous Trumpet Players
The musician playing the trumpet is called a trumpeter. The trumpet is played in many genres of music. Jazz music is one of the genres where the trumpet is often played a lot. Some of the most famous jazz trumpet players include Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, Chet Baker, James Morrison, Arturo Sandoval and Dizzy Gillespie. Canadian jazz trumpeters include Chase Sanborn, Darren Barrett and Ingrid Jensen.
Louis Armstrong was a famous American jazz trumpeter and vocalist.
In this video, James Morrison along with other trumpeters and the All Star Big Band demonstrate their amazing skills while playing “The Flintstones”.
The trumpet is a valuable part of an orchestra and is used a lot in chamber music. Many classical music composers have written compositions for this instrument. Here are some of them:
Légende for Trumpet and Piano
Sonata for Trumpet and Piano
Bernd Aloiss Zimmerman
Nobody Knows The Trouble I’ve Seen
The Bach Vivaldi
Johann Nepomuk Hummel
Concerto in E for trumpet and orchestra
Famous classical and chamber music trumpeters include Maurice Andre, Bud Herseth, David Hickman, Chris Coletti, Sergei Nakariakov, Timofei Dokschitzer, Thomas Gansch, Phil Smith, Alison Balsom, Tine Thing Helseth, Jens Lindemann (German-born Canadian trumpeter) and Canadian trumpeter Stuart Laughton.
Maurice André (1933-2012), a classical and chamber music trumpet virtuoso
In this video Chris Coletti and the Canadian Brass band play a popular hymn “Amazing Grace” all on brass instruments with amazing trumpet solo parts:
Here is Tine Thing Helseth playing the Hummel’s Trumpet Concerto on trumpet:
The French horn, also known simply as “horn”, is a brass instrument that has a rich and wide tonal range. It is a metal tube that is coiled with a flared bell.
Interesting facts about the horn:
- The French horn was introduced as a musical instrument in the seventeenth century, debuting in the comedy-ballet La Princesse d’Elide in Paris in 1664
- Its first use was as a hunting horn in France, thus the name “French” horn
- Later on, it became a flared metal tube that was valveless
- Its pitch was controlled by the lips of the player
- Sections of tubing called crooks would be added to the horn to change the length and the pitch of the horn
- Later players would insert the right hand into the bell to change the length of the instrument and adjust the tuning
- In 1818 the first horn with rotary valves was patented in Germany
- Piston valves were introduced in France around the middle of the nineteenth century in an effort to eliminate the need for changing the crooks
In this video, Richard Cuoco describes the evolution of the horn in further detail:
Types Of Horn
Single Horn - a popular choice of band directors and music teachers for their young beginner students, the Single Horn in F is lighter weight and is less complicated in structure. The single horn contains three rotary valves with one lever each to activate the valves.
Double Horn - type of horn used by many intermediate and advanced students, and also professional horn players. Combining the horn’s F and Bb tubing, this horn has slides on the top and smaller ones beneath them. This enables the horn player to play the instrument in its full range and with much better accuracy. The Double horn has a fourth rotary valve, called the thumb valve, that diverts the airflow from one set of slides, the F side, to another, the Bb side.
Triple Horn - it has three ranks of valve slides per rotor. These are complex and often heavy instruments, but in theory, offer the best of all three types of horns. The standard triple horn features horns in the keys of low F, Bb, and F-alto.
Other types of horns - natural horn, Vienna horn, mellophone, marching horn and Wagner tuba
Famous French Horn Players
The French horn is used as an orchestral and concert band instrument to achieve specific effects. In a classical orchestra, there are usually two French horns. There are many works written for the horn in chamber music as well.
Many composers have written compositions for the horn, composers like: Motzart, Handel, Bach, Poulenc, Bruckner, Strauss, Mahler and Brahms.
Well known horn compositions include:
- Saint-Saëns - “Morceau de Concert for horn and orchestra, op. 94 and Romance, op. 36”
- Poulenc - “Elegie”
Famous classical and chamber music horn players include Hermann Baumann, Radek Baborak, Stefan Dohr, Sarah Willis, Dale Clevenger, Dennis Brain, Barry Tuckwell, Radovan Vlatkovic and Philip Farkas.
Sarah Willis, a British horn player, the first and only woman to join the brass section of the world's most celebrated and widely followed orchestras, the Berlin Philharmonic.
Arguably, the best French horn player of all times is Hermann Baumann, seen in this video playing the French Horn and directing the Russian Horn Capella in “Ave Maria” by Franz Schubert:
The word "trombone" derives from Italian Tromba (trumpet) and “one” (meaning "large"), so the name means "large trumpet".
Trombone (in German “Posaune”), is a brass musical instrument that is played by lip vibration against a cup mouthpiece. The trombone has a predominantly cylindrical bore and an extendable slide that can increase the length of the instrument’s tubing. The slide takes on the function of the valves on other brass instruments. There are some trombones that have been made with valves but their use was never universal.
The trombones are pitched in B♭, an octave below the B♭ trumpet and an octave above the pedal B♭ tuba.
Tenor trombone in B♭
There are many different types of trombone. The most frequently encountered trombones today are the tenor and bass, and there are also trombones in every size from piccolo to contrabass.
A person who plays the trombone is called a trombonist or trombone player.
Since the 15th century, the trombone has been used in military and jazz bands, in concerts and in liturgical settings. Many classical composers wrote compositions, operas, and symphonies using the trombone. Composers such as Felix Mendelssohn, Hector Berlioz, Franz Berwald, Franz Liszt, Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann, Giuseppe Verdi, and Richard Wagner, to name a few.
- Joseph Alessi - Principal Trombonist with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra since 1985
- Frank Rosolino - trombone virtuoso in the jazz genre
- Arthur Pryor - well known for his beautiful tone and expressive style
- Don Lusher - known as the master of ballad playing
- Nick Hudson - a famous band trombonist
- Denis Wick - Principal Trombonist with the London Symphony Orchestra
- Christian Lindberg - called the first full time trombone solo artist
- Bill Watrous - big band trombonist
- Gunhild Carling - famous female jazz trombonist
In this video you can hear the joy the trombone brings in the hands of Gunhild Carling:
In this video you can hear Don Lusher playing the trombone in Gordon Langford’s “Rhapsody for trombone”:
Tuba is the lowest-pitched brass instrument. Tubas are found in various pitches, most commonly in F, E♭, C, or B♭. The sound the tuba produces is made by lip vibration (a buzz) into its mouthpiece. The tuba’s conical tubing increases in diameter from the mouthpiece to its bell. The tuba was introduced in the mid-19th century. Its name comes from a Latin word for “trumpet”.
In an orchestra there is usually one tuba, though an additional tuba may be added per request. The tuba is usually the bass of the orchestral brass section, reinforcing the bass of the string and woodwind instruments. Tuba is used in marching bands, and also in brass and jazz bands.
A person who plays the tuba is called a tubaist, tubist or a tuba player. In some bands and orchestras the tuba may be called “bass player”.
Famous Tubist Include:
- Arnold Jacobs - American tubist who played at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra
- Øystein Baadsvik - one of the most well-known tuba players and teachers in the world
- Roger Bobo - known as “brass legend” is an American tuba virtuoso
- John Fletcher - Englan’s most famous tubist
- Carol Jantsch - talented tubist considered to be the first woman to become a Principal Tubist in a major orchestra in the United States
- Gene Pokorny - the Principal Tubist at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra
- Charles Daellenbach - the founding member of the Canadian Brass
- Velvet Brown - the founding board member of the International Women’s Brass Conference
- Alan Baer - Principal Tubist for the New York Philharmonic
- Walter Hilgers -famous European tuba player and conductor
In this video you can hear tuba solo played by virtuoso Øystein Baadsvik playing “Czaras”:
Benefits of learning to play brass instruments
Learning to play any instrument has been proven to be beneficial in many ways. The brass instruments are no exception in this. Brass players report:
- Improved cognitive function of the brain
- Increased hand-eye coordination
- Improved concentration
- Learning discipline, patience and persistence
- Reduced stress and leading to improvement in overall health and wellness
- Promotes creativity and social interactions with other players
- Boosts confidence
- Learning to play the brass instruments can improve breath control and lung capacity
What We Offer At Our Academy
Our Academy of Music provides the highest quality trumpet and french horn lessons, as well as individual lessons in many other musical instruments. To accommodate your busy schedules and lesson preferences we provide private in class music lessons in Mississauga, Ontario (Peel Region) and online convenient lesson times that include:
Our current rate is $35.00 per 30-minute private music lesson.
Lessons are scheduled once a week and available seven days a week. There is a one-time registration fee of $25.00.
No prior musical experience is required to start lessons.
Learning to play the trumpet or the french horn will bring happiness and enjoyment to your life and will boost your creativity. We invite you to come and become a member of the Mississauga Fine Arts Academy music family!
We will ignite the talent within you and patiently help you grow on your musical journey of becoming the best brass player and musician you can be.