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16

Your logic fits and, as some of the commentators have stated, I've pondered about this in the past. Usually your dominant hand naturally can handle doing a lot more work, like you've stated. In playing instruments, the dominant hand also should be used for doing the "big jobs": in drumming, the dominant hand would be hitting the hi-hats. In a normal 4/4 ...


15

The wood type in any stringed instrument matters a great deal, especially on acoustic instruments. Some parts of the violin contribute more to the overall tone quality than others, but all the parts make a difference. A stringed instrument is a case study in engineering trade-offs. After all, how does a violin produce its sound? To begin with, note that ...


12

Like with learning a foreign language, the brain gets worse at learning new things once a person has matured. The Suzuki method starts kids on musical instruments at around 4, but many start after that. I'd say that it's definitely possible to start in the late teens or after, but it'll be harder. You'll have better luck if you already know a different ...


12

There may be a small amount of "performance practice fad" about that, but for the most part it does serve a purpose. Breath is used in many styles of music as a cue. If you think about wind instrument players, for example, every phrase is preceded by a breath, and experienced players will take that breath in rhythm. As a rhythmic gesture, it can be used to ...


11

Just to elaborate and clarify, there are a few different types of pizzicato: There is the standard "pizz." which is done with the flesh of the finger on the bowing hand; A pizz with fingernail, which gives a more crisp attack; A "Bartok" or "snap" pizz where the performer pulls the string away from the fingerboard and releases to produce a harsh snapping ...


11

There is a shortcut, yes. The secret is to practice smart. I used to tell my students there is a difference between practicing and playing; between cleaning up all the difficulties and going into the small details, and playing just for fun or for others. The more time you spend in cleaning grey zones, being careful with sound quality, with fast exercises ...


10

When I was in choir in high school, a technique that clinicians and teachers from different events I was involved with used was just singing the rhythm. Pick a note for the student to play that is in a comfortable playing position and have them play the rhythm (without changing notes) throughout the piece. If the piece is accompanied then play the ...


9

I've been trying to do just what you're discussing. I've owned a violin for several years and I'm still at the sucky stage. I'm beyond the skinning-the-cat stage, though. In transitioning from guitar to violin, there are three major differences: The tuning: Violins are (generally) tuned in fifths, not the fourths (mostly) that guitars are tuned in. This ...


8

I'm not sure whether learning violin is ultimately easier or harder as a young kid, but I guarantee you, teaching older people is much easier. The high school students I'm teaching now are also much easier to teach than I remember myself being at age six. As a result, their progress for the most part is faster than mine. Also, I've heard that the problem ...


8

In a real orchestra? It varies. Maybe 10 first violins, 10 second violins, 10 violas, 8 cellos, 6 double basses. Maybe 14, 14, 12, 12, 10. Mozart and Haydn had smaller orchestras so you may see 3, 3, 3, 2, 1, although they sound OK with a larger or smaller group. Not as many bass instruments are needed to balance the treble instruments. For late ...


8

As everything teaching "device" (and there is a lot of academic literature studying this, across disciplines, this is not specific to bowed string instruments), fingerboard tapes or any kind of marks on or on the side of the fingerboard should not : be used systematically without observation phase be permanent be used alone without having an exit strategy ...


8

I have a child who started school this year and also began learning violin this year. I personally have learnt guitar for over 20 years and can easily sight-read music. Prior to my son starting lessons I spent a few weeks trying to figure out how to play. I had access to many beginner lessons and color coded or numbered sheet music but this didn't help. I ...


8

That's definitely not the sound of a real violin (to me it sounds more like an oboe!), which may cause some confusion. It also has some kind of vibrato which will make tuning even more difficult. It should be able to help you get close, though, since the pitch is the correct E. Now, if your instrument has never been tuned before (or in a long time), it may ...


7

When I was starting to learn the piano, my teacher told me to practice every scale I knew so far, every day, with a metronome set at a different tempo each time. After a month, he gave me some sheets that were just scales, but with different rhythms each, and he told me to do the same thing, practice everyday with a different tempo on the metronome. It ...


7

I'm about at the same point (maybe a little bit ahead, but not much), so I'll help with what I can. Violins are a bear to learn, for three reasons: intonation - Keyboards only have one note per key. Guitars have whatever note the fret and the tuning give. With violins, intonation is determined by your fingers. Unless you are a very special person, you ...


7

I understand your frustration. The pegs behavior is related with different factors. Most usual factors are: - weather changes (humid/dry weather); - bad adjustment between peg and peg hole; - when the pegs are long periods without being adjusted (because of use of fine-tuners or because the instrument is not played often). Some advices: If the peg ...


7

Standard tuning for solo violin in classical music is just intonation. Tune the A string and, from there, tune the other strings with just-intonated perfect fifths. Some times, as a compromise you may need to tune the violin temperate, for example when you need to play many open strings in duo/ensemble with a instrument not capable of just-intonation. ...


6

It's very normal to get calluses when playing violin, especially if you play for such extended periods of time. However, I would expect that the pain should go away after the calluses have built up. If you are still getting pain after this point perhaps you are using too much pressure. A number of violinists have told me that the left hand should be using as ...


6

I think kids can definitely learn some things faster than adults and music might very well be one of those things, but we should take into account some other reasons why kids learn some things easier (aside from natural predisposition): Lots of free time: No job, mortgage, kids, spouse, etc. to worry about. Encouragement: Kids are expected to not be ...


6

Yes - new rosin is shiny and so won't get applied to the bow hair (it simply slides along the bow). You'll need to scratch the the rosin, either with sandpaper or, (as my teacher used to do) with a penknife, until there's a layer of white dust on the rosin. You should then be able to apply it to the bow.


6

The only true necessities are a violin, a violin teacher, and patience. It will be a very slow process, especially if you are older than 10-15. The physical coordination and relaxation will likely be the most difficult, as few other things require you to be so completely tension-free. Good things to have in addition to this: time. Ideally lots of it, ...


6

The man at the store is right: the smaller violin can play all the same notes as the larger violin. The difference is that the smaller violin won't be as loud and it will be better suited for smaller hands and fingers—if you are a normal-sized adult, you'll find a smaller violin to be more challenging to play simply because your hands will be too large for ...


6

If you are a new violinist, your ear is the the weak point. Part of what you'll be doing is training it to recognize pitches, because you aren't there yet. Get it out of the loop. Use an online tuner that uses your computer's mic, like this one (Not really a an endorsement, because HTML5 programmers are starting to write these things as an exercise, so ...


6

The screw plays several roles: The hair can (and should) be loosened when not playing so that the bow is not constantly subjected to hair tension. It's the same reason some people recommend loosening guitar strings when storing a guitar for a longer period of time, except a guitar neck has the advantage of a stiff metal rod inside it, which the violin bow ...


6

This is an issue on almost every instrument. There is a guitar teacher named Jamie Andreas, who focuses on minimising tension from the very beginning of learning. Her approach is to practice dead slow. I think this will work equally well on the violin. Finger a note on the fingerboard. Don't play it yet. Check your entire body for tension. In the ...


6

I'm not a violinist, but I am a professional trombonist. Although I can't give a specific answer to this question as it applies to violin performance in my own words, there does exist a study we call body mapping. Body mapping is basically human anatomy for performers as it relates to performance - it teaches you how to use your body correctly when ...


6

Usually problems such as this come from poor posture while playing. A violin is not a heavy instrument like an electric bass guitar or an accordion, where back pain or other muscle or joint pain are more common. I have three suggestions. First, learn proper posture. In addition to Nate Kimball's suggestion, try the simple principles of the Alexander ...


5

I don't know much about violin, but I do know a thing or two about pickups :). Piezoelectric pickups are nothing like a standard electric guitar pickup in that no magnetic field is induced while you are playing--which makes them suitable for applications such as violin and classical guitar where no metal is involved. Due to their construction they have much ...


5

Yes, it's common, but yes, it's the result of pressing too hard, at least for violin. Here's a really effective practice technique that I use with my students, which I picked up from this video: Put a small piece of paper under between the fingerboard and strings, and play a note with proper sound (ignoring the buzz from the paper) using a finger placed on ...


5

I think it would be easier if you are clear about what skill level you want to acheive in what kind of time frame. How I started? I have been playing for about 6 years. I am with my 4th teacher now. When I started I had no background in music. After about 3 months with first teacher, I thought, "Now I can read all sheet music. It's only slowly, physically ...



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