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string-along

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  1. Thanks everyone for your ideas. Andrew, I hope I'll be playing for a long time. You are a great inspiration. I guess one advantage to starting from stratch at 40 is that I am still making great strides forward (I figure I play as well at a decent jr. high student now!) I may, however, have to be content not being a quick fingered person -- I probably wasn't at 14 either. Mike, I think you are absolutely right about a quicker left hand following a confident bowing arm, though I am still wishing for a miracle exercise.
  2. I'm an adult beginner (I started vioin at 40) and have been working consistently for about 9 years. I don't have the time to put in a lot of practice time but I work at it almost every day for 45min - 1hr. I am at Suzuki level 6 or 7 (though I am no longer working in the program). I thoughly enjoy every minute I get and feel it's very special 'me" time. However, I am plagued with a lack of the dexterity I need to perform fast passages cleanly. I have a very good teacher who has worked with both my bowing arm and my left hand to improve my tempos, but I am not satisfied. I don't want to blame it on age so I am looking to exercises that I can do away from the violin? (ie while I'm watching my kids at sports or driving them all over) or is my age and genetic make up going to be forever a hindrence to improving as much as I'd like
  3. My son used a book (sorry can't remember the name or publisher I'll try to remember to look it up) which had pages of 4 measure rhythms to be played 2 times . These were grouped in a logical way. They were ment to be played on a snare drum but a telephone book worked for us! ie //1/8 1/8 1/4 1/4 1/4 // 1/8 1/8 1/4 1/4 1/4 // 1/8 1/8 1/4 1/4 1/4 // 1/8 1/8 1/4 1/4 1/4 // Then// 1/4 1/4 1/8 1/8 1/4 // 1/4 1/4 1/8 1/8 1/4 // 1/4 1/4 1/8 1/8 1/4 // 1/4 1/4 1/8 1/8 1/4// There would be a whole page of 1/4 and 1/8 combo's; then an etude combining the combo's. The next page might have a 1/2 note theme, or a whole page of dotted 1/4 combo's. (very boring eh?) By the end of the book they were VERY complicated and longer exersizes. Anyway, The repetion and variations worked wonders. I suggest looking for such a book in your local music school. Perhaps his school music teacher can help you?
  4. I play in my office at night when everyone is gone.
  5. I whole heartedly suggest drum or percussion lessons. Every pre-teen wants to drum and it worked wonders for my son. He counts and reads music VERY well because of the time spent on rudiments and reading rhythm exercises!
  6. Welcome to the wonderful world of late beginners. I started playing almost 10 years ago at 40 with my 6 year old son! There are some things that may be more difficult to feel comfortable with because of my age, but there have been just as many things which I learned more quickly because of my experience. The truly important thing is that we are both still playing and still enjoying it (sometimes even together). My son also plays French horn (although he started that instrument at 11). You will find there are many things which will help your violin playing. The ability you need to have - to "hear" the note you are about to play (on the French horn) in your head - is also necessary to playing the violin. Your reading as a French horn player is probably above and beyond what most violinists need - no more transposing! My advise to you is to find a teacher who will focus on the absolute the basics of playing a stringed instrument. (Even if you feel like you are being held back) Once you get those down you will fly since you have the horn background.
  7. Okay, I'm going out on a limb here, but it was dancing and even sports that made me more musical. I think of playing my instrument as a very physical thing. Perhaps ballet lessons or jazz or even hip hop dance lessons would be a spark!
  8. How long does a good bridge last? I don't believe mine is bent but perhaps weak in the middle. It seems to staighten out fine but them bend again with the next tuning. (It's perhaps 6 or 7 years old)
  9. While you are on the subject of bridges.... Can someone tell me what to look for as to when they should be replaced. Mine is starting to appear a bit bent in the middle. The feet stay put, but as I tighten the strings the top pulls toward the pegs.
  10. FINPROF, Thanks for the info. I actually got the application last year and thought about going to SCOR but fouond it difficult to arrange around my kids' camps and activities. One of these years I'm going to JUST DO IT. I would love to hear more about adult camps peole have been to.
  11. FINPROF, I'd love to hear about SCOR. What music did you play? At what level are most are most of the musicians? Do they send you music ahead of time, or must your site reading be well developed?
  12. My husband told me that all that sawdust was part of his dehumidification system!
  13. I always thought decrescendo comes only after a crecendo who as diminuendo can happen anywhaere.
  14. I guess I'm feeling a bit blue. My motivation was always 1st to be a help to my son who is learning to play violin. This year his playing has taken off and his skill now far surpasses mine. He has may groups to play in with school and camp. I have no one. I absolutely love to play. It is one off the only time extravagances I give myself. (I work full time and have 2 kids) Anyway, after 8 years (at 48) my fingers still fell slow and my playing is absolutely destroyed by nervousness and lack of self confidence at my lessons. It kills the joy for me. This is something I always had problems with and can't seem to shake. I feel if I had friends to play with or a group to join I could work more dilegently at home, but I've become lazy and while I play and enjoy playing every day, I find I am no longer pushing my skill level. I would much appreciate any inspiration.
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