Solitary Refinement




This is a serious book for any bassoonist aspiring to achieve a complete technique. There are many publications that provide localized road maps to developing technical facility. Nadina’s book is the Google Earth of technical methods – extraordinarily comprehensive and thorough in range. Every page is an opportunity for challenge. Solitary Refinement is going to be my companion as I look to maintain and nurture my own playing.

REVIEW Solitary Refinement 2022

Christopher Millard

Principal Bassoon
National Arts Centre Orchestra
University of Ottawa
January 2021
…in my observation, it’s a great “next step” from my Weissenborn Practical Method that I’ve almost worn out. And I love the way the Table of Content is set up. I read it as more than practice, techniques, chromatic & scales. The beginning/introduction reads like having a conversation with you where you share your journey and how you’ve set your goals. Your thoughts for a musician to improve, develop and understand what’s needed to become a complete musician is very well written and gives me a guide to continue my journey as a musician. Thank you.

Marcia McGill, December 2020

Your book is wonderful, Nadina. I’m reading ever so slowly but it’s both a balm and a challenge, and I am absolutely loving it. Just got to the swashbuckling/delicate opposites and laughed out loud, and not for the first time. So enjoying this romp through your brain. It’s brilliant. I know there are exercises in here somewhere, but honestly, I’m hoping it’s mostly your insights. Your voice is so gentle and insightful. It’s going to join my “bibles”, the ones I come to over and over. Thank you for writing this.

Cassandra Bendickson, December 2020

It’s been a fascinating journey so far to explore new and familiar exercises and ideas and find SO many things to work on. What I particularly love about your book is the explicit sense of there not being an endpoint in one’s technical mastery. There will always be patterns in the extreme registers that I have to take a bit slower, intervals that are harder to get even and in tune, and tempi barriers that I need to push past. I hope to always keep the book on my stand and my new school semester resolution is to work through different parts of it for at least 30 mins a day, mostly because the work I’ve already done for a few weeks has given me a lot of information... plus it’s really fun!

Nicolas Richard, Graduate Bassoon Student, Rice University, January 2021

REVIEW Solitary Refinement 2022

Solitary Refinement – UPDATED!

Chromatics, Chords & Scales – Concepts for the Committed Bassoonist by Nadina Mackie Jackson

8 weeks on publisher’s Bestseller List!

The newest version of Solitary Refinement has all the music printed in a slightly larger format and an added fingering chart.

A musician’s journey never ends, and the work is often solitary. Fortunately for bassoonists, Solitary Refinement can be a trusted companion throughout their musical career, replete with exercises adaptable by bassoon students who are still developing their skills, all the way to virtuosi seeking to perfect their craft.

Drawing on her extensive career as a professional bassoonist and teacher, Nadina Mackie Jackson has assembled a comprehensive volume of technical exercises for the serious bassoonist. This book covers chromatic scales in many permutations and intervals, diatonic scales and chords, and exercises designed to strengthen fundamental basics, such as fingering, embouchure, double tonguing, vibrato, tuning and tone quality.

In elegant, accessible prose, Nadina Mackie Jackson also shares her wisdom on the importance and philosophy of technical practice, with sensible advice on how to build good habits. Beyond the exercises, this book also serves as a guide for bassoonists on how to set personal goals and develop a sustained practice that will nurture their musical growth over a lifetime.

Solitary Refinement is designed for the seriously committed bassoonist of any age to maintain, develop and expand their command of the bassoon, and will inspire players to see themselves in a world that combines musical passion and fundamental discipline.

Now available in oft-requested Spiral-Bound

Author Nadina Mackie Jackson

Music Editor Kevin Harris

Illustrator Tobias Sid John

Editor Cadence Mandybura

Available in softcover, hardcover,  spiral bound, audiobook and e-book. 440 pages (with new fingering chart!)