Simon Fischer is a prolific author on violin instruction and practice techniques. He studied under Dorothy DeLay and has several books on techniques for practice. I have found his material extremely helpful for tone production on the violin among other things.

I am looking for similar material on cello but no body really stands out a "Modern cello pedagogue".

Is there any one who fits that bill? I am not referring to people who have method books necessarily, those are easy to find. I mean people who go into the finer details of teaching and learning the cello, not just techniques for playing/performance.

  • I suspect this should be closed; but you might want to look at Bunting's Craft of cello playing 2-volume set. sjmusicpublications.co.uk/cellists.cfm/product/bunting-essay-1 Commented Jan 23, 2017 at 12:20
  • I'll look into it. Why do you think it should be closed btw? Is it too broad? Commented Jan 24, 2017 at 12:00
  • I have certainly had teachers (and teacher trainers) go into fine detail like you are describing/asking for, but I don't know off the top of my head of anywhere that such things have been written down. Is there a particular age group/proficiency level you're thinking of? Because the answers to this for a 3 year old are likely different from what they would be for a college student.
    – MAA
    Commented Nov 3, 2017 at 14:39
  • I’m really looking for books targeted at teachers and self teachers. I have several books for violin by Simon Fischer. He has generalized instructions and ideas for strings but I am interested in seeing things for cello specifically. Commented Nov 3, 2017 at 14:42

1 Answer 1


Under the guidance of my teacher (at the New England Conservatory), I am using a series of books called "Modern Method for the Violoncello" by Stephen De'ak. There are three volumes in total. I'm not sure what level they start at, but by the second book it has covered thumb position. The books include simple repetitive exercises for technique development, followed by a series of etudes which incorporate the specific technique; each book details several such techniques. There are also literary descriptions and instructions scattered wherever the editor/author saw fit, which I find to be accurate and reflective of my own teacher's teachings.

This website - http://www.cellobello.com/ - is also very helpful when it comes to proper technique in all the components of cello playing, and how it should affect the quality of playing. Once you get to the website, hover over the "cello lessons" menu, and select an area you'd like to work on. Most of these are 'taught' by Paul Katz, an illustrious cellist who was part of the Cleveland Quartet.

For anyone who's self-learning cello: it's easy enough to "play", but the guidance of a qualified teacher will get you a lot farther, as there are just so many bad habits you can fall into that will come into effect when your repertoire gets harder.


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