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Binkley shows off some of her completed reeds.

Passion for oboe reed making

Faculty member Lindabeth Binkley shares her reed making skills on Instagram

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Central Michigan University School of Music faculty member Lindabeth Binkley started making reeds for her oboe when she was 14. By the time she was principal oboist of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra in Arizona, she would make reeds daily.

Though her work at CMU keeps her busy, Binkley recently created an Instagram page, @thinthetip, to help keep herself on track with her passion. Posting #OboeReedADay, Binkley is able to hold herself accountable, showcase her work and reflect about how she makes her reeds.

“It has definitely helped me see my reed making differently,” Binkley said. “I am making the best reeds I have made in years!”

Oboe is a double reed instrument, meaning it uses two pieces of cane to produce sound. Creating oboe reeds is a process that involves cutting and shaping the cane, soaking and drying the reed, and more.

Oboists tend to make their own reeds because doing so allows the musician to customize their sound and control every nuance in their playing, making no two sound exactly the same.


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