Learning how to play trumpet is a rewarding experience for students of all experience levels. A brass instrument, trumpets are used in several genres of music including classical, jazz, marching and brass bands, rock, ska, funk, and more. Our teachers can help students learn to play trumpet in whatever style they are interested in while also learning proper technique.
The trumpet is played by blowing air into the mouthpiece through closed lips. This causes a buzzing sensation for the player and sends vibrations through the instrument to create its high, brassy sound. Most modern trumpets have three valves which can be depressed in a combination of ways to create different pitches, but other notes are sounded by adjusting the embouchure or lip firmness. The most common trumpet is pitched in Bb, but several other variations of the instrument exist making it very versatile.
The trumpet is one of the oldest instruments in existence, dating back to 1500 BC or possibly even earlier. Early trumpets were used primarily in the military as signals rather than as musical instruments. By the late Middle Ages moving into the Renaissance, trumpets started to be used in a more musical capacity and the instrument was often featured in Baroque compositions. At this point in time all trumpets were still what is referred to as a “natural trumpet”, meaning that they had no valves and all pitches were created by the player adjusting their embouchure. The popularity of the trumpet as a featured solo instrument declined during the classical and romantic periods, but it enjoyed a new surge in popularity in the 20th century with the wide acceptance of the valved trumpet. This site has more great information about the trumpet and its history.
Due to the large amount of lung capacity and lip strength it takes to play the instrument, we do not recommend that students begin to learn how to play trumpet any earlier than age nine or ten. It can be possible for younger children to begin to learn to play trumpet if they are physically advanced for their age, but it can be frustrating for younger children if they have difficulty blowing into the instrument which may discourage them from continuing when they are old enough to play. Older students can always start lessons as it is never too late to learn a new skill!
Beginner model trumpets can be purchased or even rented at a reasonable price from local music stores or online instrument catalogs. Yamaha is a popular brand for students, but there are many good options available. Used instruments are also fairly easy to come by, however when purchasing a used trumpet it is best to buy a new mouthpiece for the student. Your Musika teacher can help decide what the best route for you is based on what you would like to accomplish.