Orchestral Clarinetists who play Legere Reeds

I have been playing Legere reeds for 7 months now. Since the Columbus Symphony season began in September, I have played all concerts on Legere Signature model reeds.

Now that I have settled back into Buffet clarinets and Lelandais mouthpiece, instead of changing styles and brands daily, I am happy to say that the Legeres are feeling even better than they did a few months ago. In other words, the reeds were not causing problems for me as much as the other equipment, or my lack of comfort and familiarity with what I was playing.

I have also heard some news from other parts of the orchestral world, namely Germany and Israel.

Nick Kuckmeier the Austrian mouthpiece maker says:

“...the DSO "Deutsches Symphonie Orchester Berlin", a very famous, high standard orchestra in Germany, was looking for a principal clarinet for more that three years, and now a young fellow won the position because of his outstanding sound playing with my mouthpiece and your reeds.”

Apparently, some members of the Israel Philharmonic clarinetists also endorse Legeres.

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11 comments for “Orchestral Clarinetists who play Legere Reeds

  1. January 19, 2011 at


    a couple of months ago a good friend and professional clarinetist (Perry Robinson) suggested to me to try the Fibracell reeds. He uses and likes them a lot. So I got me a “medium soft” one. But that one was way too soft. I then bought me a “medium hard” one (2 positions harder then the medium soft one) – not much difference, still way to soft. Then I tried “hard” (the next strength one position above the “medium hard” one (and the hardest they offer). What to say – that one was much too hard. Beside this problem all of them sounded pretty noisy and needed lots of air.
    Then I have heard lots of interesting things about the Legere Reeds and bought me one (Signature Series 3.0). Immediately I was very pleased by its wonderful round and centered sound. But that one still was a little to light so I exchanged it to another one with the strength of 3.5. First I didn’t realize that this exchanged reed was not one of the Signature series but one of the Standard Series. But what to say, the strength was good and the sound was even better than the one produced before with the 3.0 from the Signature series. Easy response, a very clean, round and centered sound, a good intonation thru all the registers – wow, just perfect!
    As I anyway was planning to buy a second Legere Reed, I then got me a Signature 3.5 (I thought, maybe the first Signature didn’t sound so well because it was slightly too soft). I was testing this one for a couple of weeks now but was not as satisfied with it’s sound as I am with the sound produced with the Standard series, so I exchanged the Signature again into a reed from the Standard series – and that one works just as perfect as my first one from the Standart series does.
    It seams as if I have found a pretty perfect combination for my playing.

    I suggest that everybody should give the Legere Reeds a serious try – not just because they are very convenient to use (no soaking, very consistent in quality, durable etc.), also because I think they really produce a fantastic sound.

    Greetz, Frank

    ( W.Schreiber 6026 S (boehm), Pomarico Jazz**, Legere Standart 3.25/3.5)

    • January 20, 2011 at

      Thanks for your comment Frank. Glad you like them. The standard reeds are a bit darker and heavier in sound, which may work well with your Jazz mouthpiece.

  2. Floyd Williams
    December 23, 2010 at

    I’ve been using Legere reeds(regular no.4) for about 3 years now. I’ve played a lot of concerts on them and a CD “Old Wine,New Bottles” (Move Records). I also alternate with Gonzales FOF 3.75. I’m not always sure if I’m using the cane reeds to save the best Legere or the other way around.
    They do take time to get accustomed to and it is essential that you have the correct strength. Close enough won’t be good enough.

  3. Diana Haskell
    January 18, 2010 at

    Hi David:
    No I haven't tried the Signatures. I use 3 1/2 regular VDs. Do they run the same? Also, do you try to pick the same lot numbers like their earlier versions, or does it not matter? I'll give them a try once I hear back from you as to strength and lot numbers..

  4. January 8, 2010 at

    Hi Tim. Glad you are trying them. I rotate them, and am still finding the optimum strength, which now seems to be a 4, with a softened tip. None of my 6 or so good reeds have faded. I don't think I'll need to buy reeds for the next year or so. Maybe longer.

    • Tim
      January 12, 2010 at

      I got my first Legere today– I don't plan to buy another V-12 ever again. I can tell I will need to get used to the subtle nuances in response, and I have already ordered a couple of other strengths to try out, but… I'm sold. Wow.

      • January 13, 2010 at

        Great!! I'm curious, what setup are you playing on? And what strength did you order?

  5. Tim
    January 8, 2010 at

    That would be wonderful! I'm expecting my first installment of Leger signatures soon (sadly on backorder) and would like to learn more about your experiences with adjusting them for optimum performance. You also mentioned a while back that you would post regarding how long they seem to last. Anything new to share?

  6. January 7, 2010 at

    Just waiting for mine to arrive and will report back on my experiences. Humidity ranges are so huge in a 24 hour period here in Spain and cane does not respond well to inconsistancy. I'm starting with reeds and then moving on to other pieces of equipment.

    • January 8, 2010 at

      Great! Let me know when you get them. I'll also be posting soonon how to balance them, if they need it.

  7. Diana Haskell
    January 7, 2010 at

    How do you make them work? I gave mine away after trying many.

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