You are on page 1of 2

LOW BRASS ENSEMBLE

TROMBONE TUBA EUPHONIUM

EUPHONIUM TIPS FOR PLAYERS - From NorlanBewley.com

"The 3 Mouthpiece Placements"

There are three mouthpiece placements. All are correct, you just have to use the one
that is correct for you. Most people naturally find the right one, but sometimes they are
told to use the wrong one. Teachers tend to think theirs is the only one, which is easy to
understand because that's what they know works for them.

1) High Placement:
The mouthpiece inside rim is very close to the bottom lip. The mouthpiece looks higher
on the face towards the nose. This is the 2/3 upper lip, 1/3 lower lip embouchure. As
your lips slide up your teeth and your vocal breath goes higher in your throat, the air
stream bends down more as you ascend. It bends back towards straighter as you go
lower. The jaw tends to be in (or back) for this placement. Also called Very High
Placement.

2) Low Placement:
The mouthpiece inside rim is very close to the top lip. The mouthpiece looks lower on the
face away from the nose. This is a 1/3 upper, 2/3 lower lip embouchure. It is the opposite
of High Placement.

As your lips slide down your teeth and your vocal breath goes higher in your throat, the
air stream bends up more as you ascend. It bends back towards straighter as you go
lower. The jaw tends to be out (or forward) for this placement. Also called Up Stream
Placement.

3) Center Placement:
The mouthpiece inside rim is centered between both lips, so it is or close to a 50/50
embouchure. Center Placement is a bit of a cross between the other two placements. It is
like High Placement in that the air stream bends down more as you ascend, but is like
Low Placement in that the lips slide down for high and back up for low. The jaw tends to
be in (or back) for this placement. Also called Medium High Placement.

Also see Tone Production Steps 1 and 2

~~~~~

Just because a famous player has a particular placement doesn't make it common or the
one for you. Check and see which one you have. You can usually tell quickly. Your goal is
to sing the sound in your mind and have it come out of your horn. To me, brass playing is
a substitute for singing, using your horn in place of your voice.

Mouthpiece maker Doug Elliott has a great article on embouchure types and mouthpieces
here:

Ten Questions with Doug Elliott - Good embouchure information


http://www.trombone.org/articles/library/viewarticles.asp?ArtID=30

Also of interest would be David Wilken's quite detailed article on the three basic brass
embouchure types:

http://facstaff.unca.edu/dwilken/emb_types.htm

I find that this applies equally to euphonium and tuba as well as trombone.

Copyright Norlan Bewley 1999