Position of the Body

JMk: The only physical that Tabuteau every really harped on were certain elements of posture like not having your arms too low or too high and the angle of the oboe which he would experiment with, perhaps according to his student’s embouchure, in order to get a better result. And the hand position was discussed in some great detail. I’m always amused when I see former students of Tabuteau who were told repetitively by Tabuteau that their hand position was too much this way and too much that way, and to this day they are doing what they did despite having been told, but I suppose that’s human nature.

WR: He caught me one time leaning back in the chair when I was supposed to be supporting. And he said [in a French accent] “You cannot play that way. If you ever got between the toes of my shoes and the floor during a concert, I would crush you to death!” [laugh] And after that I started putting my weight on my toes, and I found that it worked. I watched in the Orchestra and his weight was so on his toes when he was sitting in the chair that he would actually get up out of the chair sometimes.

MT: There should be no stupid excess bodily movements.