Learn the 12 Major Clarinet Scales

New to clarinet scales?  On this page you'll find a guide for how to learn and practice scales.  You'll also find videos that go over the notes and fingerings of each of the 12 major scales, complete with playing examples.

Click here for guidelines to each of the 12 major clarinet scales

There are a lot of benefits to learning scales.  Here are a few of them:

  • The majority of music is made up of scales, so in learning the scales themselves, you learn the building blocks to many technical patterns
  • Memorized scales allow you to pay attention to your finger movements and hand position without the distraction of sheet music

Is your hand position getting in the way of your clarinet scales?  Fix it here.

  • Scales are easy to vary in your practice so you can practice different speeds, rhythms, articulations, and dynamics
  • Scales exercise the entire range of the clarinet

Getting started

Start by playing each note of the scale slowly and make sure you are comfortable with all the notes and fingerings.  Then play each note in time, one note per beat.  Use a metronome to make sure you're playing to a constant beat.  Don't go faster than you can actually play!  You can increase your speed gradually.

A common way to play scales is in this rhythm:

Use a metronome here so you can make sure your fingers are moving evenly and also so you'll know exactly how fast you can play.