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  1. I pay $70 for 50 min. with a symphony violinist in Atlanta, Georgia.
  2. : Hello all, : I'm learning violin, and am trying to decide whether to buy an A=440 tuning fork or invest in an electronic tuner. My preference would be the tuning fork, as I want to develop my ear to judge intervals more accurately. I have been tuning guitars by ear for over twenty-five years (never having used a pitch pipe or tuner), and can judge perfect fourths/major thirds accurately, but find a certain amount of minor adjustment is necessary to get particular chords to play in tune, so will adjust my tuning depending on what key I'm playing in. : I don't want to spark off another intonation debate, but I've done a search on intonation and tuning, and there is still a question in my mind which remains unanswered . . . : One can tune to perfect fifths by ear when given an A, and I am quite happy to continue doing this, but I gather that the fifths in equal temperament tuning are not perfect (maybe I misunderstood, but this was my impression). How then does one play in equal temperament when one has tuned the violin's open strings to perfect fifths? Would not the open strings then sound slightly out of tune in a scale run? : I am not able to judge this on the basis of my own playing, which is still woefully inaccurate after over a quarter of a century of relying on frets for intonation. Perhaps some more experienced players can comment . . . Please remember that the violin is not in equal temperment, the piano is. The note on the piano are not 100% accurate notes because they are tune mathmatically by spacing all the notes a half step, in everyday music terms, apart. On violin if anything, the pitch is a lot more flexible thus tuning can be used as a musical addition in ones playing. For instance, if one is playing a long concerto movement with orchestra, the solo violinist will often times tune his instrument a little on the sharp side to compensate for the string going flat during performance. At your stage of developement, a 440 A on a metronome will be fine.
  3. : Searched past messages under this subject. Found none. Is there any secret to good "double stops" Any help will be appreciated. Gosh, there so many different tips for playing and tuning double stops. To tune them, it really depends on the interval. There are basic left hand feelings of a Major third and a minor third. When playing a third in double stop remember that a minor third is spaced larger on the finger board than a major. For instance on the D and A string respectively, G and B flat played together is a larger space than G and B natural. In this case, tune the g to the g string and lower the B flat to make it in tune. Any more question on other intervals feel free to write me.
  4. : The judging situation you described is normal, however, there are lots of ways to get around it - the teacher could enter their student under an assistant's name, the teacher could have a friend vote for their student, or at least against everyone else, or the rule could be ignored altogether. I've seen all three situations. : Here's an extreme example of what can go on at schools. At Curtis, I heard about a piano student whose application was rejected with a note that if they went to another teacher, they could get in. They followed the advice, resubmitted their application, and were accepted. This is hearsay from the teacher, but I've heard similar stories from other people. I'm not familiar with Juilliard, but I'd guess that it isn't as bad there because it's a larger school. : I'm not saying that this always happens, the majority of students go to these schools on their own merit, but when things like this go on, the music tends to be forgotten in the interest of political games, and I for one find it disgusting. :This is the way the world we live in goes. Now a days when you go to audition for a job, you need to play perfectly, because if you don't, the next guy. That is the quality of playing out there now. People play believe it or not, perfectly now. Technically any how.
  5. : I believe you can do injury to yourself by straining any part of your body when playing the violin, and neck problems can affect your entire body. So you must make it as comfortable as possible. The law of gravity is immutable and can only be countered with proper support. : I think you should examine as many types of chinrest as possible until you find one that lets you hold the instrument easily and properly. I would go to a top violin shop for advice and to try different styles. In the last analysis, you may have to carve an existing chinrest to fit you, or at least to modify an existing one. Some luthiers will do this-for a price. : Chinrest shapes have changed a lot in the bast 20-30 years (even for styles with the old names) as production has moved very far out of Europe to the east (or is it the west?) : My own chosen style (Stuber, which is definitely not for the square-jawed, or almost anyone else, for that matter), has changed so much (I own 4 of them, but wanted a 5th), that after returning 4 over the past few years, I have finally kept a new rosewood Stuber chinrest and have been carving it to fit myself. I've already removed half the wood- and I'm just "almost there." If you are going to carve, boxwood is the softest wood, but has to be "colored" with nitric acid vapor after all carving and sanding are done to obtain the typical color found on violin parts - definitely not something to do in the house. Next easiest os rosewood; ebony is the hardest. : Good Luck. : Andy : : I have a square shaped face. So, when I support violin with : : chin, I use the front part of the chin to make contact with : : the chinrest, rather than the side part. Using the side part : : gives me discomfort on my chin. The disadvantage of using the : : front part of the chin is that I feel strain on my neck and chin : : easily, since I have to press harder on the chinrest. I would : : like to know what types of chinrest I should use for my case, so : : that I can play violin with more comfort. This is so true I think. Try a chinrest in the middle of the fiddle and see if that helps.
  6. : Hello : I'm hoping someone could kindly help me out with a lil advice with the correct arm movement in bowing . I have been having some problems with the bow bouncing on downward strokes . I'm a beginner so please bare with me As an example , when only playing the open A string with long bowing strokes , my elbow was moving up and down a lil , which I make the assumption is bad . So what I'm wondering, what is regarded as healthy elbow movement ? I tried to keep my arm and bow in the same bowing plane in an attempt to let my arms natural weight draw the sound , which has helped . But I still move my elbow inwards towards my body about the same time as my wrist bends inwards when the frog nears the string . Is this OK ? Again , forgive me if this is a rather obvious question Any advice would be greatly appreciated .Thank You Kindly .. The shoulder controls the height of the elbow. Keep the shoulder released but stable at the same height and that should help steady the bow and elbow. Also read my comment for BS-S.:-)
  7. : I have a question about the study No. 19 in the DONT op.35 and I was just wondering if anybody could help. I have fairly big hands and don't have any problems with playing 10ths or fingered octaves, but I am really struggeling with the (I think) the 2nd bar of this study where he's written C (1st finger on G string, 3r position) A (2nd finger on D) F (3rd finger on A string) and F octave (4th finger on E String!!). It's this octave with 3rd and 4th finger (while I have to keep my 1st and 2nd finger down ) that I can't reach and I can't see how anybody else would do it. : I would appreciate any suggestions that you might have. : Thanks. : BS-S: I hadn't done that one yet so I had to go try. The way to do this is extend the wrist back for the violin, jut the left elbow from underneath the fiddle, and extend the pinky to the furthest point. Now I tend to keep my fingers very sqaure and the pad so I'm able to keep my first, second and third fingers curved without stress. I would treat the first three notes as a chord placing the bottom two down first then third, then extend extending the fourth. Good luck and remember, we're lucky this passage is in third position instead of first, then the stretch would be much more difficult. If you think this is bad, wait till the Paganini Caprices:-0.
  8. : : : (1) How loose have you tried the hair? : : : No more than a pinkey width from the stick? : : Yeah I loosened it pretty good. : OK (Andy) : : : (2) A good Russian violin-bow hold would put the pinkey tip on the bow and curved (concave) a little and the index finger somewhere between the second and third (palm) joint. This would give some extra force to the stick from the weight of the index finger side of the hand with no extra effort on your part and might tend to overcome chatter if it develops - or at least give you a "power point" to work it out. : : So you're saying that I should put a little more weight on my index finger by bending my pinky more? By "convex" you mean that the last knuckle should be bent away from the floor, right? : I JUST MEAN THE PINKEY SHOULD BE BENT THAT WAY INSTEAD OF STRAIGHT OR THE OTHER WAY. (Andy) : : : (3) Like you said. : : I don't quite understand what "square" means in relation to a bow hold. (Sorry) : THIS WAS THE COMMENT ABOUT HOLDING THE BOW TOO TIGHT. SQUARE IS THAT ALL KNUCKLES ARE ABOUT EQUIDISTANT FROM THE STICK, AS WITH CELLO BOWS. (Andy) : : : (4) OK - maybe you got one of the Codabows that's not so good. I've heard of it WRT a Coda cello bow (I think it was the weight of the frog causing the problem). Can you get a second opinion on the bow - how much does it weigh? How much pressure are you applying to the bow? My own violin Codabow is quite satisfactory - although I have a couple of other bows I prefer for one reason or another - but a number that are worse (for me). : : The problem with the Codabow is quite worse than with my other bows. I got a new grip put on it, a thicker lizard skin one, I blew right through the original. I put a glob of fun-tack on the tip to see if the new grip was the problem (although the prob. developed long after I got it done). I have an early model of a Codabow so I don't know if it has anything to do with it. : MY CODABOW IS ABOUT 2+ YEARS OLD (IS THAT OLDER? TOO) BUT IF YOU HAVE WORN THROUGH THE GRIP YOU MUST BE HOLDING IT PRETTY TIGHTLY.(Andy) : : I try not to put too much weight on the bow, I am thinking of drawing the bow smoothly across the strings when I play. : THAT'S GOOD! (Andy) : : : Finally, if your bowing is "going crooked" - that is, not perpendicular to the strings in the upper half, this common flaw can cause this "chattering" problem and other bad sounds and it is much worse with some violins than others and some bows, as well, can be more forgiving than others. : : This has been a bit of a problem for me for as long as I have played. Could that little axial rotation be causing the problem? : IT SURE COULD! TO BOW CORRECTLY YOU HAVE TO USE WRIST MOTION AND FINGER FLEXING TO BE SURE THAT THE BOW KEEPS GOING STRAIGHT. PRACTICE OPEN STRINGS AND WHOLE-BOW SCALES WATCHING YOURSELF FROM THE SIDE IN A MIRROR. KEEP THAT BOW STRAIGHT ALL THE WAY : : : : : --If everything else is OK then it sounds like what the engineers call "positive feedback" in that a vibration that should be damped is in fact growing. The fact that this happens with all your bows, to some degree, might indicate it is related in some way to the violin - perhaps the strings you are using or the setup??? Can you find someone else to try it out also? : : I'll have a fiddle buddy of mine try it when I see him next, good idea. I use steel strings. : : Another note, I just had lunch with a fiddle friend and he said that he had a similar problem and his professor told him that he needed to discribe an arc with the frog when bowing. Pull the bow a bit towards you and then push it a little away and the end of the stroke while keeping a continuous arc. Sound good? : SOUNDS BACKWARDS TO ME. TRY USING A MIRROR TO BE SURE THE BOW REMAINS PRETTY MUCH PERPENDICULAR TO THE STRINGS. ALSO BE SURE THAT THE AMOUNT OF ROSIN IS RIGHT - NOT TOO MUCH AND THAT WHEN YOU RUG A CLEANING CLOTH ON THE STRINGS BEFORE YOU PLAY THEY DO NOT SQUEAK. THE RIGH ARM SHOULD MOVE IN A STRAIGHT LINE RELATIVE TO THE VIOLIN AND YOUR LOCAL ENVIRONMENT. WHAT YOUR ARM, HAND, AND FINGERS SHOULD DO WITH RESPECT TO YOUR BODY REALLY DEPENDS ON THE SIZE OF THE RELEVENT BODY PARTS. (Andy) : : Sometimes, after I have been playing for more than an hour, the problem goes away and I cannot figure out what it is that I am doing differently when this happens. : : Thanks a lot for your help, I promise I'll go home and try this stuff out. : : This is a really frustrating and quasi-depressing situation, not being able to play long notes cleanly is like being a painter whose brushes can't hold green: you can still paint but it just ain't as pretty. Frustrated-The bow arm is the weaker area of my technical machinery as a violinist but my bow arm doesn't shake...usually:-) and I think I know why yours does. I think it has a lot to do with not releasing the arm weight into the bow. I would guess that your elbow is too high and weight can not be correctly distributed into the bow arm. Please always remeber that is WEIGHT not pressure that is the force in producing sound with the bow. Controling the shifting of the weight, such as on down bows and up bows, is the hard part. If your pulling a down bow stroke on the A string, make sure the elbow is pointing down. Instead of starting your stroke at the frog, start about a forth away. Check your arm to make sure that the forearm and upper arm form a right angle at the elbow. Now that your there, release all pressure from the shoulder. As you start your stroke, move the the upper arm down and back until it's parrallel with your body. At that point, go out with the bow meaning extend the forearm out,still keeping the elbow DOWN, don't let it come up. This should help your stroke a bit. As far as vibrato covering up the shaking of your bow, please remember that the left hand should strive for independency from the right hand and the vice versa.
  9. : I can manage 32nd note runs pretty well when there are : only 2 strings involved. However, with 3 or 4 strings, : it gets sloppy and un-even. I practice the way my teacher : says, but I am still having problems. Any valuable input on : different ways to practice these? Thanks. : Michael L. : P.S. The ways I already know are playing the notes in clumps on : each string, and playing each note separately, with staccato all down the : bow, in one bow. It is important to remember to use string combinations when crossing strings. When leaving a string, leave the last finger of the previous string down as you pass to the next string. This will cause you to have two fingers down at once creating a double-stop fingering. Also, divide the passage into even groupings and group them mentally, don't just let your fingers fly around with out precise aim and controll. Schradieck School of Violin Technics is extremely good for left hand technic. Your daily application of scales, major and minor will help too. Last but not least, always practice EXTREMELY SLOW with a METRONOME!
  10. : I have been studying two types of vibrato recently, arm and wrist, which my teacher (who is very experienced, 2nd to concertmaster in our small city symphony) tells me are BOTH essential in playing well. I know this depends on the style of the music (romantic--arm, boroque/classical--wrist) but the teacher I am studying with over the summer (different from the one mentioned above) insists that only one type is necessary. She tells me the one that is most natural and sounds better should be enough. I am really getting arm vibrato, but my wrist vibrato is lacking (flexibility, and I have such small fingers!). What do you think? I don't want to go "the easy way" and cop out on what might be an important part of playing. Any suggestions? And also, any practice techniques for either type? Thanks. I'm so impressed with this discussion board! Sara P. Sara-I am 18 and have been playing the violin for about 7 years now and have been recently accepted to the Oberlin Conservatory of Music to study with Roland and Almita Vamos, very prestigious teachers so you can take my advice on vibrato. I have relearned my vibrato three times all with different teachers. One teacher I studied with mainly stressed wrist vibrato which I found to be rather weak and tiring. Then I had teachers that stressed the looseness of the finger knuckles in response to the arm. A combination vibrato is the best type to have combining the arm, wrist and finger in different ratios. Mines is about 55% arm, 35% finger and 10% wrist. It's is important to remember that arm vibrato does not work unless the knuckles or fist joint in the fingers are loose allowing the finger to rock back from the pitch then to it again NEVER going over the pitch, the wrist is straight yet relaxed, and the arm is pumping towards the violin. Don't allow the wrist to flop forwards and backwards. If your hand is really small, you may need to extend the wrist slightly backwards. There, see if that helps!
  11. If anyone finds some ska sheet music or tabs for alto or tenor sax, just tell me. my e-mail is bjw583@hotmail.com. Thank you.
  12. I'm new to this Fingerboard thing but I already love all the information that is available here. I'm new to the violin. I'm 15 and have been playing for 1 and a half years. I am advancing pretty fast in my class though. I want to start learning vibrato soon (it doesn't hurt to start that too early does it?) but I have become annoyed at my fingers because they just don't want to move back and forth (it's kinda like patting my head and rubbing my stomach at the same time, only that's a whole lot easier). I know that there are many experienced violin players on the fingerboard and I would love some easy tips on beginning vibrato. Thanks alot for your help! Brandon
  13. : there was quite a lot of information about this subject in some posts late last year, I think. It would be worth doing a search in the archives. My dad did many searches to try to see if this had been answered previously, but did not come up with a good match on his search. If anyone has some knowledge in this regard, I would be grateful for your post. Thanks.
  14. Does anyone know how sensitive violins are to temperature changes during shipping? If you go from several degrees above freezing to 20 degrees or so below freezing and then back (e.g. shipping by air transport) will this hurt the violin? Is it better to ship by ground? (Of course, by ground, your violin could go from a warm warehouse to a freezing cold transport truck anyways.) Please, I'm having a violin shipped to me and I need some expert advice soon. Thanks. Brandon.
  15. : : so we are all looking for sheet music. If you know where to find it e-mail me too thanks
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