Have you ever wanted to learn multiphonics on the clarinet? Is there a contemporary piece you’d like to play but it requires multiple tones at once?

I was afraid of all but the simplest multiphonics for the longest time but once I got the hang of them they were a blast. This video shows you the fingerings for the four easiest multiphonics on the clarinet. In addition to the fingerings you may need a soft reed at first, a somewhat loose embouchure, and steady – but not forced – air. The notion of playing chords on a single melody-line instrument may seem counter-intuitive but is totally mainstream these days.

Check out “Song for Timisoara” (below) by Carlos Delgado to see how musically expressive multiphonics (and other contemporary techniques on the clarinet) can be when written into in a composition.

In the next few months I will be posting more complete tutorials on extended clarinet techniques which will include fingering charts and step-by-step suggestions on how to achieve these techniques. For now, though, I hope this introduction will be useful to you (or at least pique your interest!).