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Horn Studio
  • The Capital University horn studio performs under the leadership of Kimberly McCann, Adjunct Horn Instructor.


    Applied horn lessons and grading 

    Horn choir and other playing opportunities 

    Prospective student and graduates 

    Applied Lessons - Freshman Year 

    All horn majors receive a 50-minute private lesson once a week. The goal is to instill within the students the three essential elements of organized practice as follows:

    I. Calisthenics (Drills)

    a. Attacks

    b. Releases

    c. Articulation

    d. Legato

    e. Breathing

    f. Accuracy

    II. Technical (Etudes)

    a. Kopprasch Books 1 and 2

    b. Alphonse - Books 2 through 4

    c. Pottag-Andraud 250 Progressive Studies Book 1

    d. Scales and progressions

    III. Musical (Solos, Excerpts)

    a. Classical concerti

    b. Romantic Style (Accent on Horn and Piano)

    c. 20th Century and Avant-garde literature

    d. Orchestral excerpts


    Each private lesson will touch upon each of these three categories. Transposition should be learned from the very beginning. Natural Horn is explored as is hand stopping. Tone, breathing and articulation will be stressed continually.

    Horn Performance Majors should practice a minimum of three hours daily; all other horn majors should average two hours daily.

    Each student should perform on at least one Area Recital during the freshman year. After a successful Area Recital performance, the student can advance to a General Recital (more difficult repertoire).

    Grading & Final Jury

    Each major is require to play a 10-15 minute jury before the brass faculty at the end of each semester. The final jury has four parts:

    1. Major and three forms of the minor and chromatic scales through 3 sharps and 3 flats, one octave. Also, the cycle of fifths using major and minor triads.
    2. A selection that has been studied in lessons.
    3. A “one-week piece” given to the student seven days before the jury.
    4. Sight reading of comparable difficulty.


    The student’s final grade will be determined by combining the lesson, final and recital grade.

    Horn Choir and Other Ensembles

    Horn Choir is open to all qualified horn students on campus. No audition is necessary. Horn majors are required to participate.


    The Horn Choir was formed in 1963. Through the years, the choir has performed at many horn festivals and conventions. It participated in the 1978 and 1979 International Heldenleben Horn Competitions in Cleveland, Ohio. It was also invited to perform at the 1979 International Horn Workshop held at Michigan State University.


    Some of the world’s greatest horn players have given clinics at Capital University and have guest conducted the Horn Choir. A partial list includes:
    Philip Farkas
    Dale Clevenger
    Frøydis Werkre
    Douglas Hill
    Mason Jones
    Louis Stout
    Neil Sanders
    Abe Kniaz


    In addition, there are opportunities for horn students to participate in brass and woodwind quintets as well as two symphonic bands and one symphony orchestra. Each quintet is coached by a Conservatory faculty member. Playing in these groups give the student an excellent opportunity to explore the exciting and sophisticated repertoire of these ensembles. They also provide the participants a chance to develop intonation and blending skills.


    Prospective Students and Graduates

    Prospective students are invited to spend a day at Capital which can be scheduled by our Admissions Department. The visit would consist of a tour of the campus, attending classes, and “sitting in” at rehearsal with either Symphonic Winds or the Wind Symphony. You may also schedule a lesson with me, free of charge.


    Many of our horn graduates are members of professional orchestras and some have played with major symphonies (The Cleveland Orchestra, The Philadelphia Orchestra and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra). Many have been members of top military bands and many occupy important college and public school teaching positions.


    If you wish additional information, contact me at
    Kimberly McCann
    Adjunct Instructor