Q&A with Yamaha Master Educator Larry Gookin

Larry Gookin, distinguished professor and emeritus professor of music at Central Washington University, retired in 2015 after 34 years as the university's director of bands. He is the former principal trombone of the Eugene and Yakima Symphony Orchestras and is emeritus artistic director and conductor of the Seattle Wind Symphony. He is a Yamaha Master Educator

 

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Meet Yamaha Master Educator Larry Gookin

Inspired by his own high school band director, Larry Gookin's primary focus when conducting wind bands of any level is for the performers to "say something." Mere perfection of the technical aspects of performance is simply not enough — the musicians must make a personal connection to the music, which results in an expressive, musical presentation. Only then will the ensemble members truly experience the performance as opposed to presenting the performance. Audience members are greatly impacted by this experience, as well.

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Advice from Yamaha Master Educator Larry Gookin

Say Something 

When I was 15, my high school band director, Don Lawrence, told me to "say something" when I was playing a trombone solo with the jazz band. That simple comment has remained at the foundation of my career in music as a conductor, performer and educator.

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