Grant Park Symphony and Northern Illinois University bass professor John Floeter put out a really interesting blog post earlier this fall, posing an excellent question:
How do people determine the proportion of basses to other string sections for a particular orchestra?
I’ve often wondered what the “perfect” balance or even the “normal” balance of bassists is in an ensemble. Obviously, this is a quirk of orchestral music,where more than one person is playing the same part in a section. If only one person plays on the part, he or she just needs to adjust their volume in order to balance with the rest of the ensemble. I have to admit that there is a lot of freedom to make artistic choices when you are by yourself, including the proper balance of bass with the rest of the ensemble.
Read the complete post here.