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While watching one of my all time favorites the other day, The Cosby Show, I heard this scene for the thousandth time with Placido Domino singing Besame Mucho a cappella, and it sounds even better than if it had been sung with an orchestra. It reminded me that we as oboist are vocalists; the only difference is that the oboe is our voice, not our vocal chords. Most, if not all of the phrasing that we as oboists have, comes from vocal phrasing. Listen to how Domingo phrases, and notice the ups and downs are exactly as we discuss in lessons, and the importance of soft dynamics in music. This is where it comes from!
Other great vocalists to listen to for phrasing would be Leontyne Price, Kathleen Battle, Birgit Nilsson, Delora Zajick, and more! A more complete list of accomplished vocalists can found found on Student Resources.
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