A clarinet player is a musician who specializes in playing the clarinet professionally. As with most other players of orchestral instruments, clarinet players are usually part of a large orchestra, performing in synchronization with other players and the orchestra as a whole. Clarinets are also utilized for various non-orchestral purposes, such as jazz music and even rock, and thus clarinet players are usually able to find work in a wide variety of areas of the music industry. It’s not uncommon for clarinet players to become the centerfold in their band, attracting more attention than the other members. Some bands are comprised entirely of clarinet players and those are becoming more and more popular.
Playing the clarinet professionally works like with any other instrument – the player needs to first build up some solid experience by either attending a musical school, or private tutorials. In some cases clarinet players have been self-taught, though these are rarer than with most other instruments due to the complexity of the clarinet. Strong self-discipline and persistence is important for becoming a good clarinet player.
The payment of a clarinet player is affected primarily by their place of occupation – for example, clarinet players who’re part of established orchestras can generally earn a good annual income, which is additionally stable; on the other hand, members of uprising bands have to depend on the luck and success that the band will see in its first few years/months, and even though there are great potentials for earning that way, it’s also very risky. Orchestra clarinet players earn between $25,000 – $35,000 annually, while band members can earn up to $60,000 – $70,000 and more if the band becomes successful.