Why I Love: Playing the clarinet

Paterson Joseph, actor

Interview,Hermione Eyre
Sunday 08 February 2009 01:00

I had to pretend I could play the clarinet when I had a part as a dodgy West Indian clarinettist in [the television series] Jericho. I liked it so much I decided to learn it for real, and my wife gave me a series of lessons for Christmas.

We live in France, so I'm learning the language at the same time as as the instrument. You think you're safe with "do re mi", but there are small differences: "fa so la si do". The ultimate goal is Bach but for now I'm following a tune-a-day book. Today was "Badinage" by Karl Czerny.

It's like learning how to walk or talk. You know the noise you want but the mouth rebels. It's such a wonderful instrument it sounds good even if you're a beginner but every now and then you don't have the chops for it and it'll just squeak.

BBC1's "Survivors" (2008), starring Paterson Joseph, is now available on DVD.

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