Why Play the French Horn?

For some beginning band students, it’s hard to choose what musical instrument to play. Each band instrument has something intriguing to offer, whether it be where that particular instrument section sits in the band, the shape of the instrument itself, the sound that is produced when the musical instrument is played, what it is made of, and much more. So why play the French horn?

French horn is considered one of the more difficult band instruments to learn, but it can be a great one if you have some prior musical background (for instance, piano lessons). There are many great reasons to play French horn in school band:

♦ If you can sing well, and match pitch too, you are probably a good candidate to play the French horn, and band directors love French horn players.

♦ The French horn is used not only in bands, symphony orchestras and small instrumental groups, but it’s also a wonderful solo instrument. There is a lot of literature written for French horn, so you’ll have no problem in finding music you like to play.

♦ The French horn, while a brass instrument, is oftentimes considered part of the woodwind section, because it has a beautiful, mellow tone, which blends well with all the instruments. It has a large range, and can be played pretty high as well as low, so it is used in a variety of ways. As a horn player, you might be playing a bass line, a harmony part, a counter melody, or the main theme of a piece of music, which means you’ll never get bored in class.

♦ The French horn is in high-demand in most school bands, because there aren’t that many players, which means you’ll be part of an elite group.

♦ Since there aren’t that many players, honor band/scholarship opportunities abound for students that excel on French horn.