Taking a Closer Look at “Dueling Fundamentals” - Houghton Horns

Taking a Closer Look at “Dueling Fundamentals”

Dueling Fundamentals for Two Horns by Dr. Matthew C. Haislip presents familiar and original advanced fundamental exercises in a duet format. The book explores long tones, interval studies, flexibility exercises, scales arpeggios, and range extending fundamentals in fun and exacting duets. In each duet, both lines are challenging—there is no “student” line and no “teacher” line. Therefore, this book works well for lessons or as an excellent tool for two friends or classmates looking to challenge themselves and each other. It is appropriate for advanced high school students through professional horn players. The possibility of working through basic fundamentals while also sharpening chamber music skills makes this a unique resource for horn players. Dueling Fundamentals is comprised of 25 duets in five chapters. The book is 73 pages long and is spiral bound to lay flat on the music stand. 


“I can see our Northwestern University horn studio using Dueling Fundamentals for Horns not only in lessons but especially in our warm-up classes. You have covered and combined so many important fundamentals that we all need to play each and every day. These fundamentals are in our solo, chamber, orchestral, and etude literature. So, as my teacher John Covert would say, “they are all the same notes but in a different order.” Practice these exercises and you will gain the technique, strength, and intonation that will help you have a healthy career in music.”

 – Gail Williams, Professor of Horn, Northwestern University and Charles Deering McCormick Professor of Teaching Excellence; retired, Associate Principal Horn, Chicago Symphony Orchestra

“Matthew Haislip’s Dueling Fundamentals is a wonderful addition to the horn repertoire. I especially like the great variety of styles and challenges among the duets, featuring long tones, mixed meters, pitch bending, suspensions, variations on famous etudes (Clarke, Stamp), overtone series, articulation, wide intervals (fifths, octaves, etc.), trills, scales and arpeggios, multiple tonguing, and much more. A must buy for every hornist and horn teacher! Bravo on the book—it’s terrific!” 

– Jeffrey Agrell, Associate Professor of Horn, University of Iowa; former Associate Principal Horn, Lucerne Symphony Orchestra

Dueling Fundamentals for Horns is a great addition to the horn rep that lets players improve fundamentals while working together and having a fun time doing it!”

– Marty Hackleman, Artist in Residence and Associate Teaching Professor of Horn, University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance; former hornist of Canadian Brass, Empire Brass, and Principal Horn, National Symphony Orchestra

Dueling Fundamentals for Horns are well thought out and allow each player to understand the different roles and responsibilities of each seat. They also allow the players to really focus on important fundamental issues such as tuning, blending and uniformity of style, articulation, note lengths, etc. Having the chance and, more importantly, the time to really work on these aspects is often not feasible for most busy orchestral players, so these duets could serve a useful purpose for such players.” 

– Richard Bissill, Professor of Horn, Guildhall School of Music & Drama; former Principal Horn, London Philharmonic Orchestra and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

Special thanks to Dr. Matthew Haislip for creating this excellent resource, as well as his contributions to this article!


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