crazy jane

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  1. Viola scale length vs. short pinky

    Hi Nick, Playing a viola successfully and without pain seems more a matter of technique than of the player's--or the instrument's--size. Little Lillian Fuchs (4' 9") played a 17" viola quite successfully. My college teacher reshaped my left hand position using the Geminiani chord, which greatly enhanced my pinky extension (see an old thread, here ). You might enjoy this article, too: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/la-ca-violas17-2009may17-story.html
  2. Doing the unthinkable!

    When I was young and stupid and in love, my boyfriend and I bundled our valuables into a '65 (?) VW bug he'd just acquired for the 1,800 mile drive home from college. I placed my viola in the safest place I could think of--on the floor, propped against the rear seat. It was not until we arrived home three days later that I discovered the manually adjusted heater vent under the rear seat was wide open, and that my viola had cooked to the bubbling point--varnish completely blistered. The re-varnishing probably cost more than the viola's worth, and it was never the same. Of course the engine blew up shortly after the trip, as well.
  3. The Case Survey

    $100--plywood, suspension, & music pouch: https://johnsonstring.com/cgi-bin/music/scripts/violin-viola-cello-music.cgi?itemno=CSVNBO1007S/1BW
  4. Is buying a 47 year old Kozowsky viola good value?

    Ours is the single most logical clef. Middle C is the middle line. Even a violist can figure that out!
  5. Brindis de Salis - information?

    Brindis de Salas--there is a great deal on him. (check spelling--?)
  6. My brother (and mother & other brother) is color blind. He is a stage director in theater. No one knows he is color blind. He does all color design by numbers.
  7. Too many notes, Mr. Mozart

    Last week we performed Mozart's Clarinet Quintet, K. 581. It had us all talking to ourselves--how can something that seems so simple be so devilish? The descending runs in the development section, passed among the instruments, are hideous, like nothing in etudes. And a difficult key, A major (probably to accommodate the basset horn), awkwardly moving the violist from half position to second position.
  8. Has anyone any knowledge or experience with the Codabow "Marquise GS"

    My daughter was offered a trial as a "Coda Artist." She was completely impressed and bought the bow. Part of her rationale was the need for a "work bow"--something for the job, to preserve her good bows. But it plays better than the Grunke she was borrowing.
  9. Ovations - current use of

    Yes. If nothing else, stand up for the courage and preparation required of these kids. (It helps to remember how much courage it took to survive my first solo & ensemble competition--and to this day, I remember how kind that judge was.)
  10. Melvin Goldsmith bench

    What a beauty! I think I'm in love.
  11. "Balance, Purity, and Simplicity"

    And Starker taught many of them. I like his Dvorak (with DorĂ¡ti) very much.
  12. Is there a viola peg with a bigger grip?

    This site offers pretty specific dimensions for each of the viol sizes....not sure exactly what you have in mind by millimeters. https://shop.gamutmusic.com/bass-viol-peg-4/
  13. Beethoven, op. 132

    Stephen, I think you'd really enjoy Edward Dusinberre's Beethoven for a Later Age --especially if you've been lucky enough to follow the Takacs String Quartet's journey through the Beethoven cycle over the last 24 years (Dusinberre joined them in 1993, which is when I first saw Takacs, filling in last minute for the Cleveland SQ). Of course, now they have the magnificent Geraldine Walther on viola. They come round Vancouver once a year, and late Beethoven has become their specialty. Transcendental.
  14. 101 Strategies

    She is one of the better concert masters I have played under--very practical and achieving a good result across the string sections. Best player? No. But then, she is principally an educator, I believe. I am sure her advice would be quite useful. I have respect for any violinist who warms up quietly on Schradieck rather than loudly on the solos from Don Juan or the like.
  15. 101 Strategies

    Anyone notice that the violin on the cover is a reverse image (e-string on the bass side)? I would expect better for $48! I have played under Jo Nardolillo in the pit. She warms up very methodically on Schradieck.