Clarinet Days 2021: A Virtual Series May 3-7, 2021

Go behind the scenes with MMI as we explore clarinet making with some of the worlds leading clarinet manufacturers.

Join us to learn more from Buffet, Selmer and Royal Global. Join us in our Live Sessions for a chance to win some great prizes!

Stay tuned to www.mmimports.com and our social media pages for more details.

https://www.facebook.com/MidwestMusicalImports

https://www.instagram.com/midwestmusicalimports/

The 3rd Annual Silverstein Works Clarinet Contest is here!

Silverstein Works is presenting their annual contest open to clarinetists of all ages and locations. Their contest is a way of showing appreciation to clarinetists around the world as they know opportunities to showcase talents, passion, and hard work can be limited for reasons related to finances, geographical location and education, so they are making this available for clarinetists everywhere.

Submissions for Round 1 are due April 15. See general rules below and click here for more detailed information and prizes. There will also be an informational Zoom meeting on March 13 at 4pm EST.

Round 1 Submission Requirements:

Only 1 entry per submission for Bb, Eb or Bass Clarinet
All applicants must register via this application form
Only solo works or works with piano accompaniment
Entries with electronics/loopers/digital equipment are considered solo works
Winners of Silverstein Global Clarinet Contest 2019 and 2020 are not eligible
Entries must be received no later than 11:59PM EST on April 14, 2021
These rules may be changed without prior consent or notice.

Featuring Minnesota Clarinetists! Artist: Pat O'keefe

We are very excited to feature this months Minnesota Clarinetist Pat O'keefe!

Pat O’Keefe is co-artistic director and woodwind player for the contemporary music ensemble ZEITGEIST, based in St. Paul, Minnesota. An active proponent of contemporary classical music, Pat has performed and recorded with noted new music groups around the country, including SONOR in San Diego, the California E.A.R. Unit, the Cleveland New Music Associates, and Ensemble Sospeso in New York, as well as the San Diego Symphony and the Augusta Symphony in Augusta, Georgia, where he was the principal clarinetist for five seasons.

Beyond his activities in Western classical music, Pat is actively involved in other musical endeavors, as well. He is currently a member of the free improvisation group AntiGravity, and has appeared in concert with such notable improvisers as George Lewis, Anthony Davis, Wadada Leo Smith, J.D. Parran and Fred Frith. He has also studied Turkish music with Turkish Rom clarinetist Selim Sesler, and Brazilian music with master drummer Jorge Alabe. Pat was a percussionist with the Brazilian ensemble Sol e Mar in San Diego, and appears regularly with the groups Brasamba, Batucada do Norte and Music Mundial in the Twin Cities.

Pat holds a B.M. (with Performer's Certificate) from Indiana University, an M.M. (with Academic Honors and Distinction in Performance) from the New England Conservatory, and a D.M.A. from the University of California, San Diego. He is currently the clarinet instructor at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. He has taught previously at UCSD, Augusta State University and Georgia College.

INTERVIEW WITH PAT O'KEEFE

Learn more about Pat's clarinet beginnings along with his current approach to life during COVID-19 during an interview with clarinet specialists Tori Okwabi and Amelia Smith.

SOLO PERFORMANCES

Here Pat play Prelude movement from the Cello Suite in D Minor by J.S. Bach on Bass Clarinet

Hear Pat play Let Me Die Before I Wake by Italian composer Salvatore Sciarrino on Bb Clarinet

FUN CLARINET TRIO!!

Hear Pat and clarinet specialists Tori and Amelia play André de Sapato Novo, by André Vitor Correia Arranged by Pat O’Keefe (with Baxaria by Pixinguinha)

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US! STAY TUNED FOR MORE FEATURED ARTISTS WITHIN OUR SERIES.

Featuring Minnesota Clarinetists! Artist: Karrin Meffert-Nelson

We are very excited to feature this months Minnesota Clarinetist Karrin Meffert-Nelson!

Karrin Meffert-Nelson, DMA, teaches clarinet, conducts the Gustavus Chamber Winds, and teaches courses in Music Education and Music History.

Dr. Meffert-Nelson maintains an active performing career as Principal Clarinetist with the Minnesota Opera Orchestra and through freelance work with Minnesota Orchestra, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Northrop Ballet Orchestra, and with productions at the State and Orpheum Theaters.  She has also performed with the St. Louis Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, and the Chamber Music Society of Minnesota.  As a clinician, Meffert-Nelson frequently appears as an adjudicator for area solo and ensemble contests and works with the woodwind sections of the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies.

In addition to her DMA degree in Clarinet Performance from the University of Minnesota, Dr. Meffert-Nelson holds the MM degree in Clarinet Performance from Northwestern University in Evantston, IL and the BM degree in Clarinet Performance and Music Education from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN.  Prior to her appointment at Gustavus Adolphus College, Meffert-Nelson taught clarinet and chamber music at the University of Minnesota.

INTERVIEW WITH KARRIN MEFFERT-NELSON

Learn more about Karrin's clarinet beginnings along with his current approach to life during COVID-19 during an interview with clarinet specialists Tori Okwabi and Amelia Smith.

SOLO PERFORMANCE

Here Karrin play Béla Kovács: Hommage à Béla Bártok

Stay tuned for our next featured Minnesota Artist in December 2020!

Featuring Minnesota Clarinetists! Artist: Sang Yoon Kim

We are very excited to feature this months Minnesota Clarinetist Sang Yoon Kim!

 

South Korean clarinetist Sang Yoon Kim is the first prize winner of several international competitions, including the 67th Prague Spring International Music Competition in 2015, the UNISA International Flute and Clarinet Competition in 2014, and the Jacques Lancelot International Clarinet Competition in 2012. He is also a past laureate of the International Clarinet Competition in Ghent.

Sang Yoon Kim is a sought-after chamber musician, working with leading international artists, among them Swedish clarinetist Martin Fröst at the Stavanger International Chamber Music Festival, the celebrated French string quartet Quatuor Ebene, pianists Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Robert Levin. Kim also made his debut at the Ravinia Festival with the Calidore String Quartet in 2013.

As a passionate orchestra player, he has played as the guest principal clarinet of The Cleveland Orchestra and the London Philharmonic, with Vladimir Jurowski, Christoph Eschenbach, Franz-Welser Most and Jaap Van Zweden. He made his debut at the Prague Spring International Festival in 2016 as a soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra under the baton of their Music Director, Sakari Oramo.

A graduate of the Conservatoire de Paris, where he was accepted as the first Korean clarinetist in the school's history, he studied with distinguished professors Michel Arrignon and Pascal Moragues. After Paris he went on to study in Los Angeles at the Colburn Conservatory of Music, gaining an artist diploma under Yehuda Gilad in 2014. He served as Young Artist in Residence with Classical Minnesota Public Radio in 2013.

Sang Yoon Kim is a Buffet Crampon and Silverstein ligature artist.

INTERVIEW WITH SANG YOON KIM

Learn more about Sang Yoon's clarinet beginnings along with his current approach to life during COVID-19 during an interview with clarinet specialists Tori Okwabi and Amelia Smith.

SOLO PERFORMANCE

Here Sang Yoon play Béla Kovács: Hommage à Z. Kodály

CONTEST: Duet Play-Along

Want to challenge your playing and win gift certificates or prizes?

Download music here

Kegelduett No. 2 for 2 Bb Clarinets by Wolfgang Mozart

Play 2nd part and all repeats

Quarter note = 146

Contest Rules/Tips:

1. Contestants must post their video to the comment section of MMI's Facebook post for the featured artist or simply on MMI's Instagram page #midwestmusicalimports

2. Download the music, use headphones to listen to the 1st clarinet part as you record yours (and to help minimize background noise).

3. Record in good lighting  and with your device in vertical view. This allows us to easily put the duet together and repost for you.

4. If possible, stay at least a foot away from the recording device to prevent overpowering the audio input.

5. Deadline is October 31, 2020 - good luck and have fun!

Stay tuned for our next featured Minnesota Artist in November 2020!

Featuring Minnesota Clarinetists! Artist: Gabriel Campos-Zamora

We are very excited to feature this months Minnesota Clarinetist Gabriel Campos-Zamora!

Gabriel Campos Zamora, a native of San José, Costa Rica was appointed principal clarinet of the Minnesota Orchestra in June 2016. Campos was most recently the associate principal clarinet of the Kansas City Symphony and has appeared as guest principal clarinet with the Cleveland Orchestra, Seattle and Houston Symphonies in addition to serving as the Virginia Symphony's principal clarinet.

Campos has been a participant at the Marlboro Music Festival and frequently performed in the Kansas City Symphony "Happy Hour" chamber music concerts. He was a fellow of Ensemble ACJW, a program of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School, and the Weill Music Institute in partnership with the New York City Department of Education. A laureate of several competitions, he received first prize at the 2008 Pasadena Showcase House Instrumental Competition, in addition to winning concerto competitions at the 2009 Aspen Music Festival, 2010 Music Academy of the West, and 2011 National Repertory Orchestra.

Campos began his musical training at the Instituto Nacional de Musica as a student of Jose Manuel "cheche" Ugalde. He then came to the United States to study at the Interlochen Arts Academy with Nathan Williams and later received his bachelor's degree in music from the Colburn Conservatory in Los Angeles, where he studied with renowned professor Yehuda Gilad. He has been a participant of the Aspen, Music Academy of the West, National Repertory Orchestra, Spoleto and the Tanglewood Music Center festivals.

INTERVIEW WITH GABRIEL CAMPOS-ZAMORA

Learn more about Gabi's clarinet beginnings along with his current approach to life during COVID-19 during an interview with clarinet specialists Tori Okwabi and Amelia Smith.

SOLO PERFORMANCE

Here Gabi play Dos melodias para Clarinete Solo, No. 2 by Vinicio Meza.

CONTEST: Duet Play-Along

Want to challenge your playing and win gift certificates or prizes?

Download music here

Theme from Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 6 2nd Movement - 8notes.com

Play 2nd part

Quarter note = 146

Contest Rules/Tips:

1. Contestants must post their video to the comment section of MMI's Facebook post for the featured artist or simply on MMI's Instagram page #midwestmusicalimports

2. Download the music, use headphones to listen to the 1st clarinet part as you record yours (and to help minimize background noise).

3. Record in good lighting  and with your device in vertical view. This allows us to easily put the duet together and repost for you.

4. If possible, stay at least a foot away from the recording device to prevent overpowering the audio input.

5. Deadline is September 30, 2020 - good luck and have fun!

Stay tuned for our next featured Minnesota Artist in October 2020!

Featuring Minnesota Clarinetists! Artist: Jennifer Gerth

We are very excited to feature this months Minnesota Clarinetist Jennifer Gerth!

Jennifer is in her 21st season as principal clarinet of the Duluth-Superior Symphony Orchestra. A substitute with the Minnesota Orchestra since 1995, she has performed with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Minnesota Opera, VocalEssence, and in orchestras for touring Broadway shows, and ballet companies. Jennifer has a BA degree from St. Olaf College in music and mathematics, an MM degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, and was a DMA candidate at the University of Minnesota (1992-1995), studying with Burt Hara. During her DMA she was a Concerto Competition winner, performing the Debussy Rhapsody with the University of Minnesota Orchestra. In 1999 she was a founding member of the Prospect Park Players, a chamber music group that was active in the Twin Cities for seven years. Jennifer continues her love for chamber music playing at the Festival of the Lakes chamber music festival in Alexandria, MN. With 27 years of collegiate teaching experience, Jennifer has taught at St. Olaf College, St. Cloud State University and College of St. Benedict. She currently teaches at the University of Minnesota, the University of St. Thomas and maintains a private studio.

INTERVIEW WITH JENNIFER GERTH

Learn more about Jen and her approach to teaching and life during COVID-19 during an interview with clarinet specialists Tori Okwabi and Amelia Smith.

SOLO PERFORMANCE

Here Jen play Mvt. 1 of Miklós Rózsa's Sonatina for Solo Clarinet here. 

CONTEST: Duet Play-Along

Want to challenge your playing and win gift certificates or prizes?

Download music here

Selected Duets, Vol. 2 by Rubank/H. Voxman

Duet No. 3 - Ludwig Beethoven

Play 2nd part, starting on page 65, ms. 2 (a tempo)

Quarter note = 126

Contest Rules/Tips:

1. Contestants must post their video to MMI's Facebook or Instagram page #midwestmusicalimports

2. Download the music, use headphones to listen to Jen's part as you record yours (and to help minimize background noise)

3. Record in good lighting - not too dark!

4. If possible, stay at least a foot away from the recording device to prevent overpowering the audio input.

5. Deadline is August 9, 2020 - good luck and have fun!

 

Stay tuned for our next featured Minnesota Artist at the end of August 2020!

Buffet $250 Instant Rebate & MMI Discounts

Get up to $500 off your R13 Bb or A clarinet purchase now through December 15, 2020.  With Buffet's $250 discount and MMI's spectacular offers you can get up to $500 off! All clarinets are professionally setup at NO ADDITIONAL CHARGE to our clients. Learn more about our setup here.

Check out MMI's July newsletter to learn more about summer deals, upcoming virtual events and more!

Royal Global Clarinets

Midwest Musical Imports is very excited to introduce our new partnership with Royal Global Clarinets and Brian Corbin Clarinet Products Distribution!

We have a selection of Royal Global inventory in our shop and are offering trials of these fine instruments - call today for more information about our generous trial process!

American Royal Global Artists include: Jonathan Cohler (Longy School of Music, Bard College), Jorge Montilla (University of Iowa), Christopher Hill (Principal Clarinet,  South Dakota Symphony Orchestra) and Lilly Haley (U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet Band).

History:

Yuan Gao is the owner and clarinet designer of Royal Global. He is a decorated clarinetist who studied performance in Asia, Europe and the U.S. As a student, Yuan developed his instrument and accessory making skills, learning skills from instrument makers such as Luis Rossi. In 2010, after years of building instruments by hand in Boston, Yuan began sourcing parts and developing prototypes with some of China's top instrument manufacturers. Ultimately Yuan built his own facility near Beijing, China giving him 100% control over every part of the manufacturing process. This control helped achieve high standards in quality control, from natural aging of the wood to making all of the keywork and accessories in the same facility. Still to this day, clarinets are hand-finished near Boston. After 5 short years, Royal clarinets began selling and gaining recognition in over 25 countries such as Brazil, Italy, China, and Russia. Now, Royal Global is making more advances on their instruments and gaining traction in the U.S. clarinet market, garnering a reputation for high quality craftsmanship at a great value.

Wood selection:
The grenadilla (African blackwood) wood is aged anywhere from 5-10 years providing consistency in sound and minimizing the possibilities of cracking. Naturally dried and aged, all clarinets are unstained and display the natural beauty of the wood. The most dense and acoustically resonant pieces of wood are reserved for the high end professional models.

Key work:

A unique Royal Global feature, the silver and gold plating is applied using a process that leaves a heavier, thicker layer to protect against plating wear and enhance the feel in the hands. Uniquely the keys are double plated with silver or gold and are made from one solid piece. Yuan makes all his own keys in the same factory as the clarinets. Royal Global is also the maker of keys and parts for many major instrument makers across the globe.

*Learn how Royal clarinets are made here.

Features:

Features:
• Royal Global clarinets feature poly-cylindrical bores that are uniquely "stepped." Manipulating the bore shape and taper gives life to each model, unique in its response, flexibility, and tonal palette.
• Silent Mechanism, using synthetic body bumpers instead of old-school key corks that fall off and deteriorate
• Adjustable clarinet barrels (professional models)
• G/D lower joint vent and double-register Bb vent (Firebird only)
• 3 year manufacturer Warranty, including instrument replacement for cracks within the first year and joint replacement thereafter

Listen to Lily Haley play the Firebird model  - Here

F. Arthur Uebel Clarinets

Midwest Musical Imports is very excited to introduce our new partnership with F. Arthur Uebel Clarinets and Moe-Bleichner Distribution!

Ricardo Morales - Principal Clarinet of The Philadelphia Orchestra is now an Uebel artist. Come learn and try for yourself why Morales made the switch to these amazing clarinets!

Event details:

Saturday, October 5, 2019 1:30pm-4:00pm at Midwest Musical Imports

The event will start at 1:30pm with an introduction of the clarinets by an Uebel representative.

The remainder of the event will be an open house with the chance to:

  • Meet and greet with Uebel representatives
  • Learn more about the history and unique details of their production process
  • Trial several Uebel clarinet models

To learn more exclusive details about the clarinets, listen to the Clarineat Podcast with Sean Perrin and CEO Victoria Moe and instrument maker Andreas Moe.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TME-bifXgDg

History of Uebel Clarinets: The company was founded in 1936, but within the past 10-15 yrs the clarinets have been reinvented with modern improvements.

Wood Selection: Wood is hand-selected, aged for 5-7 years and another 2+ years after the bore is drilled. Other manufactures now kiln dry their wood, taking it only 5 weeks from tree to completed clarinet. The Uebel clarinets have lesser chance of cracking due to their selection and aging process.

Selection process includes looking for wood density, where the wood comes from and if the drying process is slow enough. Each joint of the clarinet is matched in wood density, weight and grain direction. These factors contribute to an even tone throughout each register.

Durability: The wood of every Uebel clarinet is hand-selected and includes multiple layers of silver plating on the keys which results in a very durable clarinet inside and out.

Clarinet bore: As with most German clarinets the bore is larger than French clarinets. This provides a thicker wall and in turn has a larger, darker sound. The modern Uebel clarinets have a hybrid bore that is smaller than a traditional German bore, but appeals to those most familiar with a French bore system.

Ergonomics: Due to the larger bore, the tone hole placements are also different from French clarinets. The feedback has been that the reach, particularly in the pinky keys, is easier. Those with smaller hands or younger students have an easier time getting around the clarinet; especially on their very popular bass clarinet!