Date: Sun, 7 Aug 2005 10:35:11 -0400
From: "Rick and Eva" <>
Subject: [TPIN] My visit with Jeanne Pocius

Hi everyone!

This week I spent two absolutely wonderful days with our own Jeanne Pocius. I can't begin to tell you what a fantastic experience it was musically and in terms of getting to know her on a personal level. To those who have never met Jeanne, all I can say is that she is one of the most beautifully passionate and inspiring people I have ever met. Your life will definitely be enriched by spending some time with her.

Anyway, I'll give you all a short rundown of my visit. A colleague from the Air Force, Marthe Jobidon, and I drove down from Ottawa, Canada to Jeanne's home in Salem, MA through Vermont and New Hampshire through some of the most beautiful countryside I've seen in a long time. (This is worth another trip in the fall once the leaves have turned.) The next morning at 9:00 we showed up at Jeanne's door and were greeted warmly and shown into her studio. Jeanne apologized for the disarray as she was still getting settled into the new place, but I felt at home since it looked pretty much like my own practice area at home. There we met fellow TPINer Robert Novickas from Chicago who was down for a few days as well. (On a side note, Bob is one of the nicest people I've met in a long, long time. He is the embodiment of what a "gentle man" is. I wish you all my best, Bob)

Jeanne then listened to us each warm up and just observed what we were doing. Once we were done we got a short critique of what she observed. Then we began work on Jeanne's standard warm ups. (Everyone go to Ole's site now and check them out)

The main thrust of Jeanne's methodology seems to be to find what works best for each INDIVIDUAL in order to make playing as easy as possible. She has a wonderful way of explaining concepts to make them easily understood. At one point I was carrying far too much tension in my face and body which was interfering with attaining a relaxed sound. Jeanne very calmly placed both hands around my neck, started to squeeze and then instructed me to "SING!!!" I got the point......

We carried on this group lesson all day and ended, with meal breaks, late in the evening, after which we spent some time at a local brew pub with a number of other local trumpet players who are also TPIN members but whose names I have unfortunately forgotten. My apologies guys :-(

The next morning we began again and once again went for three sessions late into the night. Jeanne had to kick us out at one point in order to go teach her summer children's band. We needed the break but Jeanne just kept motoring along. We got together at the end for a beer and snacks and broke it up around 1:00 AM. The next morning I had to stop by Jeanne's house to pick up some music I had forgotten and here she was in the driveway getting ready to leave to drive up to New Hampshire in order to write some grant proposals. "Does she ever sleep?" I wondered.

One thing I MUST bring up is Jeanne's playing. Boys and girls, she is the REAL THING!! She is the loudest player I have ever heard, AND the quietest I have ever heard. Orchestral excerpts? No problem. Cornet solos? Mastered. Classical solos? Her Arutunian made me want to cry it was so beautiful. Lead trumpet? Her double C will tear your head off!! She plays jazz as well and can imitate the sound of all the great players. Her Harry James was a knockout - felt like the old man was there in person. Her Bill Chase had me begging for mercy :-)

Jeanne is a consummate player, teacher, pedagogue, historian.....well the list goes on.....and she is passionate in everything she does. I don't think I have ever met such an inspiring person, and I feel truly privileged to have spent this short amount of time with her. I guarantee it won't be the last time.

For those of you who may have toyed with the idea of going to study with Jeanne I urge you to go. You will be ever so glad you did. You'll not only learn a lot about trumpet playing but you'll also learn a lot about how to become the best person you can be.

Thanks for all of that Jeanne - I love you more than you know :-)

One more thing, and I ask all of you that can get involved to help contribute to this. Jeanne is working on a project to build an instrument lending library to supply kids whose families can't afford it with instruments to learn on. So, if you've got an old trumpet, clarinet, tuba or whatever sitting in the basement not doing anything, get in touch with Jeanne and contribute to the library. The only way to keep music alive is to get instruments into the kids' hands as soon as possible in their lives and awaken that love of music and keep it alive for their lifetime. C'mon all you wonderful musicians - be generous!!

I think I've taken up enough of your time on this rather lengthy post so I'll sign off now and go practice my "squawks". Want to know what those are? Go see Jeanne!!

Rick Rangno