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Average time required to finish Suzuki Book 1 ??


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Never seen anybody take off their shoes. What's wrong with bowing? Inculcating respect for teachers is something we could use a lot more of in this country.

If you use the Suzuki repertoire selectively you may be a very fine teacher but you simply shouldn't call yourself a Suzuki teacher, that's all I'm saying. In the hands of a good, well-trained teacher the "orthodox" Suzuki method, followed at least up through about book 6 or 7 or so, is well-proven to produce good results- the conservatories are full of excellent students who had this training. Of course there's more than one way to skin a cat but it doesn't seem very fair to criticize a Suzuki teacher for, well, being a Suzuki teacher. Naturally if that's not what a parent wants s/he is free to look elsewhere.

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[quote And they undoubtedly reflect Suzuki's personal likes (who else plays Fritz Seitz these days). The enduring strength of his books, in my humble opinion, has been his great selection of tunes.

I'm working on the Seitz peices at the moment and am quite enjoying them...is there something 'wrong' with them?

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Seitz is still a staple for "traditional" teaching as well- there are only so many student concerti at that technical level. You can even hear a Seitz concerto with orchestrated accompaniment on Perlman's "Concertos from my Childhood" CD which every family with a violin-playing kid should own.

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"they were chosen a long time ago in a far away place."

I believe the contents are established right here in the US by a committee. They came up with the contents of Vln Bk 10 about 8 years ago (if I remember correctly), and recently (I think is was 3-4 years ago) also redid the order/contents of two of the Viola books. There was also a committee for the performance style exhibited on the recordings (nothing like having a committee agree on telling David Cerone how to play Lightly Row). I understand that it was a unique experience.

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I mentioned Seitz because I like those pieces as well (perhaps because I could actually play them). I often wondered who he was. My son's current teacher, who trained in violin at Indiana and Yale, did not know of him outside Suzuki. Several years ago, my internet research on him turned up zip. Finally, I found some of his music in the Library of Congress and learned that he seemed to have written material that mainly supported teaching. His published works seems to dovetail w/ Suzuki's time in Germany. Perhaps without Suzuki, he would have been lost to music history. It's great to hear that there also is some orchestral work by him.

Reedman, is it correct then that volumes 1-7 still reflect the original Suzuki selections? Have there been any efforts to rearrange those works or, perhaps, revise the fingering? Aside from my personal enjoyment of those pieces, I think they give one a nice background in the great composers.

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I don't know about the structure of Books 1-7, or whether they have ever been re-ordered or refingered. I suppose the best way to find out is to compare the Summy-Burchard version (the licensed version for the US) with the one used in Japan--I am afraid I don't have the Japanese editions. I know discussion of fingerings in the books comes up quite often in this and other forums. Even though a specific fingering may appear to not make the best sense in a specific situation, the actual fingering may be laying the foundation for something in the future.

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Yes! Some of Sensei's fingerings and bowings where chosen to develop skills and technique in the novice student. Not neccesarily for use in professional performance. One is always welcome to go back to a piece after getting through several more books and choosing fingerings and bowings that might suite the individual player better in solo performance.

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I am one of those so called Suzuki purist you fans were describing. What ever that means.

I also have a student in her 50s who has a busy life and has taken up violin after raising two Suzuki Piano Students and sent them off into the world. She has decided that it is now her turn to have some fun. A software trainer who also likes to study Italian and visit Italy, she has also taken up violin with me.

She has been taking her sweet time at this since it is at her leisure.

It has been very instructive to her. Not only about how her mind and her ears work but also interms of her general health and well being. Playing the violin certainly makes you aware of one's physical flexibility and any tension in the body both muscular and mental. The experience has been a revelation for her. She has started giving more attention to her physical fitness and her ability to relax.

Being more in a hurry than I was, she managed to get sore arms and shoulder's in the process before she became better at listening to her own body. Once she began toning her upper body she was able to move more naturally and ergonomically.

For the older student playing the violin can be a real barrometer to one's health and well being. IF she keeps at it I know it will add quality and a few years to her life expectancy.

We have also been talking about that book "Playing with less Hurt" Topics like breathing, meditation, streching, yoga, tai chi may be relevent to these older beginners.

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Thanks! I had looked him up too...but I couldn't find mention of him anywhere (other than in the Suzuki books).

Too bad there isn't more works like that (intermediate?) range available...I don't know how many people have commented that there's a lot of easy stuff for beginners...and then 'real' works...but very little intermediate rep.

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Hi All,

I would say one-song (one piece), one-week is normal, specially in books 1 or 2 of Suzuki.

Why it takes so long for that person? One can always go back and played them better ( mechanically more corrected and more artistically ,hard to say what it means).

I started learning to play violin at age 28.(40 years ago)Reading notes and attentions to intonations were not my problems. I played harmonica and flute before I picked up violin. I think

one has to push homself to limit in order to get progress violin).

Only my intense practices last few (10) years got me to somewhere.

How wrong I was in my previous years that my teacher or (4 teacheers with similar approach),teachers "baby" me too much. I believe there is no such thing {"play this piece

perfectly before going to next "piece" }. I don't know

you would agree with me? Let me hear from you or you may think

I have a point.

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I bought my first violin at Thanksgiving time in 2002. We're going on two years here pretty soon. I'm still on book 1.

First, I don't have a teacher. My wife teaches cello by (mainly) the Suzuki method, and my daughter is learning the cello from my wife and is currently on I think book 4 (she's 11 years old).

But most importantly, I just don't practice regularly. I'll get into this mode where I'll practice every day for two or three weeks and then get out of it. Sometimes I won't play my violin for a good month or two. I just recently went to the Suzuki camp at Sandy Island on Lake Winnepesauki for the second year in a row with my wife and daughter, and I hadn't played my violin for about 7 or 8 weeks beforehand.

One reason is that about 3 months after I bought my outfit from Southwest Strings I got interested in learning how to make violins, and I bought some books and tools and wood and whatnot. I made my first violin from around February of last year till November, when it was completely finished. The violin I made is now the violin I play and my Southwest Strings outfit (Yuan Qin) is now collecting dust.

This year at Suzuki camp I performed Minuet #2 publicly. The year before at Suzuki camp I performed Minuet #1. Not all that much progress eh?

Well I feel like I want to learn more and improve a lot this year. I want to be reading music very well and be in book 3 or late book 2 or so. I've been practicing more since we got back. If I can keep up the enthusiasm I may just do it.

Oh, I asked a violin teacher who is friends with my wife and our family if she'll be my (regular, paid) violin teacher, and we're gonna start weekly lessons in September.

I'm currently working on my second violin. I'm just about finished the outside arching on the back, and when I finish the back completely I will be gluing it to the rib garland, which is already complete and still on the mould.

I guess you can say I've been as much or even more interested in violin making than in violin playing. I do feel a lot more inspired lately to learn violin playing though, and I hope I keep it up.

All this just goes to show that you really can't judge why a person is still in book 1 or why it took them so long. Maybe they're not trying hard to move beyond it, like I haven't.

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  • 15 years later...

...the funniest thing (for me)...is seeing one of my early MN posts from 2004, as my alter-ego. :lol:

I "restarted" playing then, and started taking weekly lessons (and asking questions and exploring the violin world...).

Hmm ..16 years - I should be way better than I am...:ph34r:

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  • 2 weeks later...

As of April 2020, I've now been playing 3 years and 4 months.  I'm 46.  I had no musical experience prior to starting.

I have taken weekly lessons since starting.  I practice about an hour daily.

My teacher used both String Builder and Suzuki with me.  I am still refining the Book 3 pieces and continue to revisit Book 2 as my skill set gets better.  I recently worked through Wohlfahrt book 1 of OP 45 over the last 18 months as well.

So I guess 1 year per book, but my teacher has allowed me to explore other music and work on it together.  As an adult doing this for personal growth and satisfaction, I don't feel constrained the way a young student may be.

I think my approach has been a bit more holistic, very intonation focused, and I have taken time to try both Irish and American Fiddle in addition to Classical.

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Excellent! :) Noticing improvement  and progress is so rewarding. But with music especially, we really have to enjoy the journey - since "practicing" is 95% of it! ^_^

My progress has been frustratingly slow...but today I was also made aware of how far I've come. Gotta love that warm fuzzy feeling it gives you! :wub:

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  • 1 year later...

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