i've been playing oboe for about two years now. (i've done clarinet for six.)
solo & ensemble's coming up, and i've decided to try to play a grade five... crazy, i know.
i'm playing romance no. 1, op. 94 by robert schumann.
i would like some tips on how to improve my tone/dynamics/etc. actually, any tips about oboes at all would be good.
also, i'm not particularly sure what strength reed i should be using... in the past i've used the (crappy) ones from the music store, but my band teacher let me use one of her professional ones and i loved it. i just ordered a handmade intermediate reed with a medium strength. do i need to be playing on a harder one?
Sounds like you need to talk to your teacher - she should know your playing abilities & know how to cure your problems as she appears to be an oboist.
There are so amny variables in instruments, reeds & players to make it easy to diagnose problems on a forum. I suggest staying with medium reeds - you need to have very well developed breath support to cope with hard reeds.