Recommended Supplies & Materials

     Following is a list of my recommendations for each student level in regards to equipment.  As always, contact me with questions if you are new to the clarinet or even to band!  
     My biggest advice is to never buy the least expensive model that you can find.  As a parent, I understand the fear of investing money into a brand new project - especially when you are unsure if it is an activity that your child will "stick with."  The normal reaction is to find a cheap brand so that you are not out a lot of money if it doesn't work out.  The problem with this strategy, when it comes to instruments, is that "cheap" brands often have more issues with poorly-made parts, do not play in tune, and break easily.  These instruments spend more time in the shop than they spend in the student's hands.  Eventually, all of this repair cost adds up and you will have, in the end, spent more money repairing the instrument than you spent in buying it, in the first place.  
     With the above statement in mind, the most important point to make is that your student will NOT have fun learning to play an instrument if he/she is constantly fighting with it.  If a students does not have fun...they usually quit.  A quality instrument truly can be the difference between "sticking it out" and quitting.
     Used clarinets hold their value well and, if your student decides that band or clarinet is not for them, you can normally sell it to someone else for the same price that you paid initially.  So, please, do not be afraid to invest in a quality instrument.  I absolutely love helping students find their instruments so please contact me for help!


Basic materials needed for all students, regardless of skill level, include the following:
  • Working instrument (See more specific information below)
  • Mouthpiece (See more specific information below)
  • Ligature
  • At least four working Vandoren Bb Clarinet reeds (See more specific information below)
  • Reed Case that will hold at least four reeds
  • Silk Clarinet Swab
  • Cork Grease
  • Lesson Notebook -  Three ring binder with notebook paper.  This binder will hold lessons notes, music, handouts, and weekly assignments.  If a binder is required for band class then, please, feel free to combine the notebooks into one.

Beginner Materials:
  • "So You Want to Play the Clarinet" Student Edition by Paula Corley.  Available to buy directly from me or by order from Paula Corley's website -  https://www.clarinetcity.com/shop
  • Instrument - I prefer and highly recommend that all clarinet players have a wooden instrument, if at all possible.  In my opinion, clarinets made from plastic or ABS Resin are not given quality attention during the assembly process and, as a result, spend a LOT of time in the shop.  They may be cheaper but, in the long run, will cost much more than they are worth after constant repairs.  Trustworthy companies that produce well-crafted wood clarinets include Buffet, Yamaha, Selmer, and Leblanc.
  • Mouthpiece - Vandoren 5RV Lyre is a great mouthpiece that will take a student through high school.
  • Ligature - For beginners, I am not very picky about ligatures.  I do prefer one made from metal but, otherwise, the choice is yours.
  • Strength 3.0 Vandoren Traditional Reeds ("Blue Box")

Intermediate Materials:
  • "Daily Workouts - Warm-ups and Exercises for the Developing Clarinetist" by Paula Corley.  Available to buy directly from me or by order from Paula Corley's website - https://www.clarinetcity.com/shop
  • "Artistic Studies from the French School" for Clarinet - Available locally at N-Tune Music & Sound or by order from several retailers.
  • Performance Solos as assigned.
  • Instrument - I prefer and highly recommend that all clarinet players have a wooden instrument, if at all possible.  In my opinion, clarinets made from plastic or ABS Resin are not given quality attention during the assembly process and, as a result, spend a LOT of time in the shop.  They may be cheaper but, in the long run, will cost much more than they are worth after constant repairs.  Trustworthy companies that produce well-crafted wood clarinets include Buffet, Yamaha, Selmer, and Leblanc.
  • Mouthpiece - Vandoren 5RV Lyre is a great mouthpiece that will take a student through high school.
  • Ligature - Vandoren M/O Bb Clarinet Ligature
  • Reeds - Specific recommendations will be made individually.  Most of the time, Intermediate students play on a strength 3.5 Traditional "Blue Box" reed or a strength 3.5 or 3.5+ Vandoren V12 "Silver Box" reed.

Advanced Materials:  A standard list of recommended equipment is listed below.  Very serious students who aspire to study music in college will be given even more detailed equipment recommendations, as needed. 
  • "Artistic Studies from the French School" for Clarinet - Available locally at N-Tune Music & Sound or by order from several retailers.
  • Performance Solos as assigned.
  • Instrument - At this point, if a student's aspirations include a goal of making All-State Band, performing at State Solo & Ensemble Contest, or studying music as a career, I highly recommend getting a professional model clarinet.  In my opinion, the Buffet R-13 is, by far, the best clarinet available for a professional model clarinet.  I am more than happy to assist parents and students in finding a well-priced, quality instrument.
  • Mouthpiece - A Vandoren 5RV Lyre is a great mouthpiece.  Students wishing to pursue music as a career may wish to upgrade to a new or different mouthpiece that is more fitted to the student's specific needs.  I always recommend Vandoren products and am more than happy to assist in this process.
  • Reeds - At this stage, reeds are more tailored to the mouthpiece than to the student's embouchure strength.  Individual recommendations will be made for each student.  Normally, advanced students will play on a strength 3.5, 3.5+ or 4.0 reed of either the Vandoren V12 "Silver Box" reed or the Vandoren 56 Rue Lepic "Black Box" reed.