Music: A Blow for the Tuba

As any musician knows, it takes a lot of brass to be a tuba player. Generally, tubas range in size from the B-flat tenor (10 Ibs., 151 in. of tubing), which is hugged to the player's chest and sometimes goes pah-pah, to the large, economy-size B-flat bass (29 Ibs., 387 in.), which is often worn somewhat like a life preserver and mostly goes oompah. One thing that tuba players have in common is a fear that audiences are laughing at them. To many nonmusicians, indeed, the tuba appears absurd —there is always some fellow...

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