Hello Mr. Friedland, can you shed some light on what ‘chedeville’ mouthpieces are? And what kind of sound do they produce? Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Chedeville mouthpieces used to be all the rage in special clarinet mouthpieces. But most of what I know concerns my own experience in playing on them. They were a rod rubber mouthpiece with a steel or a sterling silver insert. Quite an interesting look and most played well, though they had no particular secret of which I am aware.(Actually I have recently discovered this was a Goldbeck mouthpiece) I spent an hour or so with David Glazer, a wonderful and interesting player who played this Goldbeck. This was many years ago. He was the clarinetist with the New York Woodwind Quintet and really added much to that excellent ensemble.He also played as soloist in many European orchestras. His sound was dark, frankly I thought that he sounded “stuffy”, though I myself played at the time with a very “bright” sound, or one that could be calle “bright”
Well after an hour or so, he sounded like me, much brighter, and I like him, much darker…..or so I remember. Then after a bit more time, we sounded on each other mouthpiece as we did on our own. TRUE. All of these adjectives mean nothing, or much, depending upon who uses them and how.
I think you should use a mouthpiece that 1. gives the closest approximation of the sound you have in your head, and 2, the mouthpiece that plays the most reeds.
Good luck in all of your work. Come and take a couple of lessons/
This is an adendum to the article on Chedeville mouthpieces and adds that this mouthpiece is or was actually the model which many outstanding players used as their goal toward find a great mouthpiece. There were two brothers who produced mouthpieces of very high quality, excellent sound and intonation. And then there are the mouthpiece artisans, those who get these older mouthpieces and then after finding what they consider to be superior, they simply copy it to the best of their ability and their ability to hear and to make mouthpieces.
After this we find all of the various makers who make mouthpieces, and we get the Zinner blanks from Germany, which most swear on, as having extremely beautiful sound qualities.
I have purchase several of these mouthpieces and after all of the searching and trying I have found that it is completely subjective in nature.
I purchased a beautiful Chedeville copy made by a noted maker, and found it to be really quite wonderful.. This maker is Richard hawkins and it his “R” mouthpiece, his newest which is his rendition of a two-year study of the Chedeville mouthpieces in his collection. I would be hard pressed to find a more conscientious mouthpiece craftsman. he teaches at Oberlin.
It is said that Robert Macellus, one of the most beautiful sounding players played on such a mouthpiece. To listen to the old Cleveland Orchestra recording, one is really taken with his deep and ,lovely quality of sound.
Then of course, a mouthpiece was made supposedly according to his specifications, put out in huge numbers, and the thing plays terribly.
One might be moved to say, “so what” , but there are others for whom it is absolutely necessary to play a “handmade” Chedeville or Kaspar mouthpiece. And finally if one gets a good one, great but is that THE mouthpiece.
Gino Cioffi , one of my teachers played a gorgeous crystal mouthpiece. He sold them to his students. He wanted me to buy one and when I asked if the mouthpiece I was to buy would play as his does, he said, “of course, they all play the same” We know that not to be the case. Do we not?