After assembling the bassoon, place seat strap on front of chair and sit far back in the chair.
Hold the bassoon firmly with the thumb keys toward you, and attach the strap to the boot cap by hooking it through the hole nearest you.
Grasp the bocal just above the octave vent and insert it with either hand by pushing down while twisting slightly.
Hold the bassoon firmly with the right hand and lean forward slightly from the back of the chair. Adjust the strap until the bocal touches the center of the embouchure.
Place the prepared reed on the bocal (using the right thumb and forefinger) until tight and horizontal.
Incline the bassoon to the left and adjust the music stand until you can see the music by looking straight ahead.
Bring the bassoon to you! Never go to the bassoon!
Just Like Other Wind Instruments:
Keep your spine straight and tall Keep your shoulders back and relaxed Keep your feet flat on the floor
Where to start:
Second space C in the bass clef is a good starting note.
Take a full breath before each note. Be sure the oral cavity and the throat stay open and relaxed.
Gradually extend the range up and down, using C as a center point.
Try taking several notes in one breath, making sure the tone stays full and relaxed.
Don’t worry if the pitch is a little flat at first. This will correct itself as you get used to the reed and instrument.
The shape of the inner mouth alters slightly the further away you go from the second space C. This shape normally varies between an “AH” shape, the lower you go on the instrument and an “EE” shape, as you play higher in the register.
The embouchure should reveal only a slight change if any at all.
Do not be misled by the above statement into thinking that the embouchure does not change: the change is slight but can usually be felt, if not seen, in the center of each lip, especially the lower.
Arm, Hand, and Finger Position
Natural, relaxed finger position.
Wrist should be straight, so right arm must be slightly away from body.
Fingers should be naturally curved.
There should be very little tension.
Basic hand position, embouchure and tone production techniques are reasonably similar to those of the saxophone.
Tone Problems and Remedies
Some Bassoon Exercises
The following downloadable music is a quick and easy way to learn up to the F Major scale.
It contains fingering charts beside each exercise. It also helps you learn in 4 note portions.