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B.E.R.P. for Brass Instruments

B.E.R.P. for Brass Instruments


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In 1986, Los Angeles Philharmonic trumpeter Mario Guarneri developed the Buzz Extension and Resistance Piece (B.E.R.P.) for brass instruments—a dynamic advancement in brass pedagogy. The creation of the BERP grew out of the concept of mouthpiece buzzing which has been used for many years as a teaching technique for brass players. One of the leading proponents of buzzing the mouthpiece was James Stamp. He asked his students to add some resistance to the mouthpiece when buzzing by placing their little finger over the end. By learning to blow into resistance, which in fact happens when you play the instrument, you become more aware of the undesirable creation of resistance in your body, and thus avoid it by using proper breath support. He also asked his students to finger the valves of their instruments while buzzing the mouthpiece, to create an awareness of the connection between the fingers and the brainís perception of pitch.

By putting the two ideas together—buzzing against resistance, and fingering (or moving the slide), to the corresponding pitch—the BERP maximizes the benefit of mouthpiece buzzing practice. Adjustable resistance dial slides over four holes to let you tune the BERP to any resistance you want. Side-by-side design lets you switch between playing and buzzing instantly. New adjustable clamp fits around the receiver opening of any brand or model of instrument. If you play a brass instrument, there’s a BERP for you.

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