Living with bassoonists: a string-player’s crash course in woodwinds

If you asked me, a cellist, in January what I knew about the bassoon, my knowledge would be pretty limited: my cousin plays it in his high school band, it’s one of those pesky double reed instruments, Mozart wrote a concerto for it, and Stravinsky chose it for the famous opening of Rite of Spring.

After living with the bassoon section of Sarasota Opera for a month, I’ve heard more than enough to make up for my prior ignorance. Not only are the bassoonists I’ve encountered delightful people, but they also have a fascinating instrument. Many own beautiful homes too with little patios for playing their instrument. I thought I would take the chance to share a few things I’ve learned.