Undoubtedly, one of the largest wind instruments is the tuba, which belongs to the group of brass instruments with the largest dimensions. And here we can notice a certain relationship between the size of a given instrument and its tuning. The bigger the instrument, the lower its tuning, and the tuba is one of the lowest-sounding instruments in this group.
Construction of the tube
The tube consists of a long tube that begins with a mouthpiece, coiled several times, expanding conically and ending with a bell. Contrary to appearances, it is one of the most labor-intensive structures that requires extensive experience in the production process. Smaller diameter tubes are attached to the main pipe, each with valves or pistons. Usually the tubes are rolled in the shape of an ellipse with a cup placed on the right side of the player with a piston system or rotary valves.
Application of the tube
In spite of the fact that their instrument is usually one of the greatest, the natives are often underestimated by the audience. Everyone pays attention to the first violinist or violinist, pianist or pianist, and little is said about tub players. One should know, however, that the tuba in the orchestra plays a very important double role. It is an instrument that, on the one hand, plays the role of a melodic instrument, which most often plays the basic bass line, on the other hand, it is a rhythmic instrument that often determines the pulse of a given piece together with the percussion. It is safe to say that no orchestra has no chance of success without a tuba player. It’s like there is no bass player in a rock band. The guy is usually standing somewhere to the side, because usually all the eyes of the fans are focused on the leaders, i.e. those leading musicians, e.g. singers or solo guitarists, but without this instrument being the core of the band, a given song would look weak. It is on the basis of the tuba played that the following instruments in the orchestra create a continuation of the harmonic.
Of course, the tuba is most often used in brass and symphonic orchestras, but it is also more and more often found in entertainment groups. Among other things, it enjoys great use in Balkan music. More and more often, this instrument goes beyond the role assigned to it, mainly as an instrument playing the base, keeping the pulse, and we can meet it as an instrument with solo parts in a piece.
Tuba had its public premiere during the 1830 Hector Berlioz’s Fantastic Symphony. After this concert, it became the norm that all pieces for orchestra had a place for the tuba in their score. Composers such as Richard Wagner, Johannes Brahms, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Nikolai Rimski-Korsakov used the tuba in a special way in their symphonies.
Learning on the tuba
Brass instruments in general are not easy instruments and, as with most instruments, they require many hours of practice to jump to this higher technical level. On the other hand, this basic level of tuba skills is not difficult to achieve, and after mastering the correct blast, you can start playing simple parades. As for the good age to start learning to play the tuba, as with all brass, it is recommended that they are not the youngest children, as it may be the case, for example, in the case of the piano. This is because a baby’s lungs are still developing and shaping, and they shouldn’t be put under too much strain.
To sum up, the tuba is a very nice and cheerful instrument. The vast majority of musicians playing this instrument are also very nice, cheerful people. The facial expressions of a tuba player can often amuse the listener a lot, but this is how a cheerful instrument is. Besides, it is also worth considering in terms of competition in the music market. Ie. there are a lot of saxophonists and trumpeters and unfortunately not all of them have a place in good orchestras. However, there is a large deficit when it comes to good tubers.