YVS-140 Tenor Venova Casual Wind Instruments
Let’s play VenovaTM!
This guidebook provides important tips on how to hold and play Yamaha Tenor VenovaTM, as well as details on controlling the pitch and timbre. Master the basics and enjoy playing!
* Refer to the “Owner’s Manual” (separate booklet) for information regarding the care and handling of the instrument.
- The VenovaTM is a branched pipe wind instrument manufactured and sold by the Yamaha Corporation. VenovaTM and are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Yamaha Corporation.
- The illustrations as shown in this manual are for instructional purposes only and may appear somewhat different from those on your instrument.
Before You Play
Setting the Reed and Ligature
Twist the mouthpiece from side to side as you slide it onto the neck joint. After attaching the mouthpiece, set the reed and ligature onto the mouthpiece.
- The reed tip is delicate so please take care not to damage it with the ligature, etc.
- If you are using a reed made from cane rather than the resin reed supplied with the instrument, moisten the end of the reed in your mouth (or water) before playing.
- Slide the ligature onto the mouthpiece from its tapered end.
- Position the reed so that the edge of the mouthpiece is slightly visible over the reed tip. Tighten the two screws on the ligature to secure the reed in place.
- Position the ligature so that the tuning fork logo is centered in the ligature’s open space
- Tighten the ligature screws just enough to keep the reed from moving. Take care not to over-tighten.
Let’s Try Playing
- Hold the instrument as shown in the illustration below, keeping your back straight, shoulders loose, and chin pulled in.
First, hold the instrument without covering any of the holes.
- Position the mouthpiece in your mouth with your upper front teeth resting about 1cm from the tip of the mouthpiece. Cover your lower teeth with your lower lip to keep your teeth from coming into direct contact with the reed.
- Take a deep breath and blow into the instrument.
Let’s Try Playing
Tips on Making Sound
- Holding the Instrument
Holding the instrument the wrong way (wrong angle or poor posture) can result in poor tone or difficult fingering. Always be aware of proper playing form when playing the instrument.
* Refer to the illustration on page 5 1 for proper instrument angle when holding.
- Mouth Shape (Embouchure*) With the reed resting on your lower lip, seal your mouth around the mouthpiece to keep air from leaking out of the corners of your mouth when blowing.· Do not bite hard on the reed or mouthpiece.
· If you are experiencing difficulty getting sound from the instrument, refer to the chart on page 8 and check the mouthpiece position.
* The shape of your mouth when playing the instrument is called the “embouchure.” The embouchure is very important when playing wind instruments. Proper positioning of lips, tongue, teeth, etc., creates an optimum embouchure, which lets you control the pitch and timbre of the instrument.
- Blowing the Instrument
Compared to a recorder, the Venova requires more breath to play. Use a lot of air and blow firmly into the instrument.
Close the Tone Holes and Play Some Notes
- Use the ball of your finger (not the tip) to cover the hole.
- Use your fingers in a relaxed, stress-free form.
* The illustration below shows all tone holes being covered.
Since lower pitches are hard to produce without good embouchure and sufficient airflow, let’s try playing a “G”.
Fingering a “G”
Close the tone holes properly to achieve a beautiful and stable tone and good pitch. Fingerings for other pitches are provided on page 12.
Let’s play VenovaTM ! 7
Getting a Balanced Sound
If you are experiencing difficulty getting sound from your instrument, it might be a good time to review your embouchure. Mouth shape and teeth alignment vary widely among individuals so take time finding an embouchure that works best for you. Refer to the chart below and try varying the position of your teeth, the angle that you hold the instrument, etc., to find a well-balanced tone.
Inside of Your Mouth
When blowing into the instrument, the inside of your mouth should be shaped as if you were pronouncing “OH.”
Tonguing is a technique for dividing a tone by interrupting the airflow with your tongue.
It is done by touching the end of the reed with the end of your tongue and releasing it.
Tips on creating tone
The Venova is compatible with tenor saxophone mouthpieces and reeds, so once you are able to produce individual notes smoothly using the supplied mouthpiece (equivalent to Yamaha 4C tenor saxophone mouthpiece) you might want to experiment with different reed/mouthpiece* combinations to change the way the instrument blows and produce different tones (brighter, mellower, clearer).
- The instrument comes with a soft reed making it easier to play for beginners however, higher pitches may be more difficult to articulate. Once you can blow sufficient amount of air into the instrument, you might want to move to a stiffer reed to play higher pitches more smoothly.
- Stiffer reeds tend to play slightly sharp in pitch. If so, refer to the “About Tuning” section in the owner’s manual and adjust the mouthpiece position.
- Some tenor saxophone mouthpieces made by other manufacturers may fit poorly or produce poor pitch making them unsuitable for use with the Tenor Venova. Always consult with your Yamaha dealer before purchasing.
|No sound.||The reed is not properly positioned on the mouthpiece.||Refer to page 4 0 and properly position the reed.|
|Not enough air to make the reed vibrate.||Increase the amount of air you blow into the instrument.|
|Biting too hard on the mouthpiece (too much lower lip pressure on the reed).||Reduce the amount of pressure your lower lip is applying to the reed.|
|The mouth is too loose (the lower lip is not sufficiently supported- ing the reed).||Close your mouth tighter around the reed (not to the extent that the sound squeaks) to firmly support the reed with your lower lip.|
|Low-pitch sounds are hard to make.||The upper front teeth are not resting firmly on the mouthpiece.||Use your left thumb to firmly support the instrument so that the mouthpiece is in firm contact with the upper teeth.|
|Low-pitch sounds shake and waver.||The lower lip is covering too much of your lower teeth.||Reduce the amount of lip covering your teeth.|
|Makes a squeaking sound.||The mouthpiece is positioned too deep in the mouth.||Refer to the “Getting a Balanced Sound” section on page 8 and review your embouchure.|
|Biting too hard on the mouthpiece.||Refer to the “Getting a Balanced Sound” section on page 8 and review your embouchure.|
|Holding the instrument at the wrong angle.||Refer to the “Tips on Making Sound” section on page 6 and review the angle you hold the instrument.|
|Not adequately covering the tone holes.||Refer to the “Close the Tone Holes and Play Some Notes” section on page 7 and firmly cover the tone holes.|
|Water noise can be heard while playing.||Moisture has accumulated in the body, mouthpiece, or reed.||Remove moisture from the inside of the body with the supplied cleaning swab and also remove moisture from the inside of the mouthpiece and reed with a soft cloth.|
|The overall pitch is high.*||Biting too hard on the mouthpiece.||Don’t bite too hard on the mouthpiece.|
|The mouthpiece is positioned too shallow in the mouth.||Position the mouthpiece deeper into your mouth.|
|The upper front teeth are not firmly resting on the mouthpiece.||Make sure your upper front teeth are placed firmly on the mouthpiece.|
|The overall pitch is low.*||The mouth is too loose or open (the lower lip is not sufficiently supporting the reed).||Close your mouth tighter around the reed (not to the extent that the sound squeaks) to firmly support the reed with your lower lip.|
* The reason the pitch is off is possibly due to a poor embouchure. Refer to the “Getting a Balanced Sound” section on page 8 to find a solution that improves your pitch.
The end section of this guide provides fingering charts (on page 12) and some sample songs (on page 14). You can find more information for Venova, such as playing tips and performance videos, on the website listed below.
Yamaha’s special Venova Site: https://www.yamaha.com/venova/
The Tenor Venova is used only with the German fingering system.
* Semitones such as F #, G #, B b tend to easily play sharp, and are hard to resonate. Use fingering, airflow, and embouchure control to adjust the intonation.
• The Tenor Venova actually sounds an octave lower than this notation.
CloseCover 3/4 (octave key is not closed
When The Saints Go Marching In Difficulty: Low
This song only requires fingering with the left hand so make sure you provide good support with your right thumb to keep the instrument from moving about.
When The Saints Go Marching In
When The Saints Go Marching In Difficulty: High
The low “C” is difficult to sound. Make sure your fingering, embouchure, and airflow are balanced well.
When The Saints Go Marching In
Amazing Grace Difficulty: Low
The “E” requires the use of the octave key (or thumbing) so pay close attention to your fingering to get a good, solid tone.
Amazing Grace Difficulty: High
It is important that all the tone holes are properly covered in order to get a good resonant tone on the low notes. Make sure the tone holes are completely covered with the ball of your finger (not the tip).
10-1 Nakazawa-Cho, Naka-Ku,
Hamamatsu, 430-8650 Japan
Manual Development Group
© 2021 Yamaha Corporation
Published 10/2021 2021