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French Horn Range


Thomas
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As I'm writing so much orchestral stuff nowadays (don't ask why or how ;)), I just want to know what is the range for a intermediate-professional French horn player - concert pitch please! I've seen massive ranges though are unsure if these are actual notes or harmonics that are possible.

Sorry for be naive - I'm not a brass person and I don't I'll ever be (strings all the way!)

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French horns can play a little over 3 octaves, starting around the second D below middle C and ending around the second F above it.

I am vague about this because virtuoso players can often extend a bit beyond this range, but the normal range is that.

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\/[4' date=Feb 17 2006, 06:11 PM' post='1116790280]

French horns can play a little over 3 octaves, starting around the second D below middle C and ending around the second F above it.

I am vague about this because virtuoso players can often extend a bit beyond this range, but the normal range is that.

Actually the practical range is smaller than that - while a good college-level player can actually hit the second G above middle C with some practice, even professional horn players have difficulty staying above high C (one octave above middle C) for more than a few measures at a time, and sustained notes at the top of the horn range are an absolute no-no. That's actually one of the most common errors made by inexperienced composers. I use high C as a practical upper limit, going above that only occasionally. Also, it's not very practical to go past the second F below middle C for more than a few notes at a time.

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well the official range for trombone is

tenor- 2nd E below middle c to 1st Bb above middle c but almost all players can easily play as low as the 3rd Bb or Ab below middle c to about the 2nd D above middle c. nowadays trombonists are concetrating alot on range expantion so some can even hit the 2nd F or G above middle C.

modern bass trombone is pretty much the same but the in between pedals and normal range range sounds better and most players can go down to as low as 3rd G below middle C.

trumpet in Bb ( to me ) only goes as low as the 1st E below middle C ( concert pitch) but today most pros can go as high as the 3rd E above.

which tuba do you wanna know about? :P

no offence but horn, if you have played it, can have a very wide solid range in my opinion. definitly 3 and a half octaves. :shifty:

and today most trombone players play soprano, alto and contrabass as well ( the've become common once again) do you want there ranges as well? :wacko:

P.S. I live in a third world country where all brass players have day job and only have 3 max 5 hours to pratise and still they have these kinds of ranges so Brass players in the rest of the wrold derinitly have these kind of ranges.

hope this helps...

Janca

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no offence but horn, if you have played it, can have a very wide solid range in my opinion. definitly 3 and a half octaves. :)

It's one thing to say that brass players have that kind of maximum range. As I said, a college (not professional) horn player can go both above and below the listed horn range. However, to play at either end of the range for a long time is difficult. It's irresponsible to fail to consider the difference between maximum range and sustainable range.

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Thank you very much for your replies! I kinda write the trombone line in the bass clef - not entirely sure about the alto, tenor and bass trombones so I prefer to just stick to one. Maybe in my next big composition, I'll think about shoving in a large brass section - now that would really test me! Thanks for you help. I really appreciate it :P

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