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Trill exercises


VicM
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Don't start on trill studies until your hand position is loose and positioned correctly. You could hurt yourself. Sevcik has an excellent book on trill studies available on IMSLP.  As with anything, start off slow and work your way faster. Fast trills aren't really the goal of trill studies- they are a side effect of good left hand technique. Work on the left hand and the trill will happen. 

 

The 'weak fourth finger' is actually a myth. If you're trying to reach your fourth finger up, then, yes that weakens the finger. Instead, think of placing the fourth finger first  at the angle it feels most secure. Then reach the first finger back into position. The first finger reaches back much more easily than the fourth finger reaches up.

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I need help for some good trill exercises for the violin. I practice Schradiek each day and some trill from Sevcik but I see no improvement at all.

Any suggestions for how to get a very fast trill ?

 

There are no exercises, it's a trick. Get yourself a good teacher who knows how it's done and exchange your money for his knowledge. You can't beat that one. :) As Will L nicely put it here , "violin is a bag of tricks". And you don't need a "very fast" trill. A normal one would do just as well and a slow one was all that ..... David Oistrakh ever had.

Why waste time on the irrelevant ?

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I need help for some good trill exercises for the violin. I practice Schradiek each day and some trill from Sevcik but I see no improvement at all.

Any suggestions for how to get a very fast trill ?

 

I had slow trill for 10 years until grade 10. Then I was told to practice trills strict in tempo and only with metronome. That worked wonder and I developed sufficient speed in around six months. I would say about as fast as Oistrakh. I can make you a clip. I suggest you use Sevcik with metronome and do 1/2/3/4 combinations. But strictly in tempo - that did it for me. Just do a mordent when you would need a bell trill. I will be punched for this by one of the contributers here but those super fast trills are just weird and in bad taste even in KV271.

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I agree with dan_s.

 

VicM, how fast is your Schradieck?  Quarter note equals... 120?  136?

 

I can do 120 but I get tired after a while, in 10-15 minutes. My 3 nd 4 finger in particular get very tired. But I am practicing every day and often two times a day. I see progress.

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I can do 120 but I get tired after a while, in 10-15 minutes. My 3 nd 4 finger in particular get very tired. But I am practicing every day and often two times a day. I see progress.

 

10-15 minutes of Schradieck is too much, if you ask me.  That sounds like a tendonitis risk.  If you can do 120 with clear consistent left hand articulation (and a smooth right hand), turn the metronome up higher.

 

When you say very fast trill, how fast do you mean?  I would aim for a strong trill.  A controlled trill.

 

Perhaps a faster trill is the "vibrato trill" (and perhaps its name will give you an idea of how to achieve it).

 

Also, consider thinking about the release of your fingers instead of the attacks.

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10-15 minutes of Schradieck is too much, if you ask me.  That sounds like a tendonitis risk.  If you can do 120 with clear consistent left hand articulation (and a smooth right hand), turn the metronome up higher.

 

When you say very fast trill, how fast do you mean?  I would aim for a strong trill.  A controlled trill.

 

Perhaps a faster trill is the "vibrato trill" (and perhaps its name will give you an idea of how to achieve it).

 

Also, consider thinking about the release of your fingers instead of the attacks.

 

Very good advice here. Too much Schradiek will cramp the hand in my experience. I know there was a Sevcik everybody was getting damaged by it when I was in school . I will try remember which.

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IMO, a trill is like certain other things we do, such as vibrato:  like trying to develop vibrato, you can practice exercise after exercise and try to build up the speed slowly.  But at some point the trill is either going to "take off" or it won't.  You can't really will it or control it (entirely).  There is a fine line, perhaps, between just playing "two notes very fast over and over," and a trill.  We can sense the difference, of course.  

 

Carl Flesch says that a trill is a transformation of a slow controlled voluntary action to a "most rapid...involuntary tremulant movement."  At the time he wrote, he noted that many teachers looked at the trill as something some people could get and some couldn't.  Flesch, writing a how to book, naturally took a positive position and argued that the quest isn't hopeless.  (But I'm not sure one way or the other.)  And he offered some good thoughts and exercises, and I recommend you find his book "The Art of Violin Playing,"  Vol. l.  

 

And once we do have a trill, that's not our only concern—it can sound bad.   It needs to be in the character of the music AND passage we're playing.   A rose is just a rose, but a trill isn't just a trill.  It's a musical device and needs to fit what we're playing.  You can hear some famous violinists don't always have a trill that fits what they are playing.  Listen to a lot of violinists on Y-Tube.  The good news:  All in all, a slow trill is better than too fast a trill, IMO; but it still has to be a trill, not just fast notes.

 

Then we have quick-impulse trills, and we have long sustained trills.  I learned trills without much trouble; too soon to even remember how I did it.  So I'm not much help.  I suspect part of it was because I DID have teachers who could trill, as Carl suggests is helpful. If I had to guess, we work very hard at all the ways of building up our speed, and hope at some point to "let go" or "let fly" and there we'll be.  I'm sure a real trill is not controlled, so somewhere along the line we have to have some sort of "readiness" and only then can it miraculously occur.  But IF it does, it won't be because we made it happen.  

 

Galamian says that we need to play lightly with limited movement of the fingers; and to try to articulate or move the finger too much will create tension.  And tension is the last thing we need when trying to trill.  He also finishes by saying that too many people only pay attention to the beginning of the trill; but the end of the trill is important, too.

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I want to thank you everybody and I want to ask about this Beethoven Concerto with Arabella Steinbacher. Is this a good example for how quick and how well to do trills? She has vary fast trills in the Cadenza by Kreisler and in the second part. It is a performance I like very much.

 

 

 

Also if anybody can post a good example of trills I would apreciate a lot.

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I had to go trill...and pay attention. How well I trill seems to depend on which finger is doing the work. Oddly. ..my 4th is better than my third (or at least today it was).

I since I was momentarily focused...I had to take advantage of it and check a name! It is Anne-Sophie...and not Anne (Sophie-Mutter).

:)

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I want to thank you everybody and I want to ask about this Beethoven Concerto with Arabella Steinbacher.

 

1. Is this a good example for how quick and how well to do trills?

 

2. She has vary fast trills in the Cadenza by Kreisler and in the second part.

 

3. It is a performance I like very much.

 

 

 

4. Also if anybody can post a good example of trills I would apreciate a lot.

 

1. No

2. Not close to "very fast".

3. Listen to other players, too. Ferras / Furtwangler for a start. This is a very patchy performance. Lots of problems, from intonation and tone stability to staying together with the orchestra.

4. A good example would be anything with Oistrakh, Szeryng, Grumieux. Quick enough and in perfect taste. I know exactly what you want to do - it's a waste of time. It's always beneficial to learn things you can use for something else, too. 

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