Date: Tue, 14 Dec 1999 10:44:43 -0600
From: Steve Wright <>
Subject: Re: [TPIN] Adam and Cichowicz were in Florida?


***DISCLAIMER:  I have a number of friends who have studied with Bill Adam and also know that he must be a marvelous teacher and gentleman.  I'm also aware that many of his ideas may have solid grounding in theory and science.

THAT SAID -- What of Vincent Cichowicz's end of the clinic?  So much is said of Bill Adam's teaching (with almost a reverent tone), yet little of Cichowicz, who is considered one of the best teachers in the world. However, his teaching "system" or "manner" doesn't seem to have created the *following* that Bill Adam's has.

This is not meant to be confrontational, but I do owe much of what I am able to do on the trumpet to the instruction I received from Vince Cichowicz -- much of it very easy to understand and dealing with the production of a sound in a very efficient and musical manner.

Yes, Cichowicz's instruction involved mouthpiece *playing*, which I find to be very beneficial for my students.  Perhaps the sounding of a note (only one pitch) on the leadpipe has its therapeutic benefits, but I've not found it a particularly interesting way to warmup.  My students will move from a short mouthpiece playing routine to "moving long tones" on the trumpet and seem to benefit from it... they hear pitches and develop corner strength and airflow consistency while having to gliss an octave or so just on the mouthpiece without dealing with the horn.  When they move to the trumpet, they tend to play their slurs with better movement and consistency.

IMHO, mouthpiece *playing* (don't think just "buzzing") doesn't have to involve any more tension than playing into a leadpipe if done correctly.

As a "product" of Vincent Cichowicz's style of teaching and one who has perpetuated this style of teaching for nearly 35 years, I would love to hear more from some of *his* former students and their successes (or not, if that is the case).

This is not a *competition* between teachers, but I think that we owe Mr. Cichowicz some credit in this forum, as he was an integral part of that "Chicago school" of brass playing many of us respected as we were growing up as trumpeters.

Enough ...time to warmup.