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Sautillé Bowing Bow Hold Problem


tchaikovsgay
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Am practicing Kreutzer No.2's 7th bowing: Sautillé.

Assuming my bow hold is natural (Franco-Belgian bow hold) and I don't have a sweaty right thumb, I found my right thumb slowly moves (goes through the hair and wood of the bow) while I Sautillé... How to correct it? Is this normal? I already relaxed all my fingers...

Thank you

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21 hours ago, Stephen Fine said:

I can't picture what you mean.  Can you try describing it again?  Your thumb slowly moves through the hair and wood of the bow!?

The only oddity that I know of regarding sautille bow hold is that the pinky often leaves the stick.  The thumb should be doing its normal thumb thing.

like this (first pic is BEFORE Sautillé, second pic is AFTER Sautillé)

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18 hours ago, Rue said:

Your grip is incorrect - in general.  And the dirty bow hair at the grip is an indication of this.

I don't know if I can verbally explain why though - it would be easier to show you.

But that is why your thumb is slipping through.

I follow these rules:
-(1)thumb placed on gap between leather and frog bent (bow's bottom octagon' side)
-The (2)index finger comes into contact with the stick at the extreme end of its second joint
-(3)middle and (4)ring fingers wrap around the frog but don't cover the frog eye
-(5)little finger curled on wood (bow's top octagon' side)

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Ok I just realized I forgot the importance of ring between the thumb and the middle finger

Would you mind to check if this is correct :P (to perform all the bow acrobatics)

1: normal hold

2: index finger

3: thumb

4: little finger

5: ring finger

6: middle finger

7 & 8: collé

9: holding the bow only with 2 fingers

10 & 11: rolling the stick

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Interesting.

Your bow hold looks okay to me.  I would probably have to see it in action to be sure.

As for your thumb not cooperating during sautille, I don't quite know what to tell you.  I suspect that your thumb is coming unbent during the stroke... if the tip of your thumb was anchored correctly, I don't think it would move through like that.  Most of the flexibility in my sautille stroke comes from my wrist and the finger knuckles, the thumb doesn't move as much.

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2 hours ago, Stephen Fine said:

Interesting.

Your bow hold looks okay to me.  I would probably have to see it in action to be sure.

As for your thumb not cooperating during sautille, I don't quite know what to tell you.  I suspect that your thumb is coming unbent during the stroke... if the tip of your thumb was anchored correctly, I don't think it would move through like that.  Most of the flexibility in my sautille stroke comes from my wrist and the finger knuckles, the thumb doesn't move as much.

I see!! Lemme check my thumb when 'Sautilling"

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Looking at the first two pictures again, I notice that you're making contact with your index finger at the second knuckle, curving the third around the stick a bit.  I find that this adds some tension and can lead to a creeping bow hand (not the problem you're describing).  If you're looking to fine tune, perhaps consider making contact with the stick between with second and third knuckles (like it appears in the last picture you posted, less like it appears in the second-to-last).  If your index finger is too far extended past the rest of the bow hand, it can pull the hand.

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3 hours ago, Stephen Fine said:

Looking at the first two pictures again, I notice that you're making contact with your index finger at the second knuckle, curving the third around the stick a bit.  I find that this adds some tension and can lead to a creeping bow hand (not the problem you're describing).  If you're looking to fine tune, perhaps consider making contact with the stick between with second and third knuckles (like it appears in the last picture you posted, less like it appears in the second-to-last).  If your index finger is too far extended past the rest of the bow hand, it can pull the hand.

Sure, I make contact with the stick between with second and third knuckles of my index finger now

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2 cents' worth, since I'm not sure where you stand technically.  Off hand it looks like you are holding the bow in a stiff and gripping manner—as if you are trying too hard.  

In person it is easy to demonstrate sautille but unfortunately not so easy to explain verbally.  

To do the bowing (most bowings, in fact) we can't have the bow in a "death grip."  The old idea of simply holding the bow as if you had picked up a pencil is a good general rule.  Another problem especially beginners have is that they think we control the bow at all times.  In fact, in a way we are going along for the ride much of the time.  Sautille is a perfect example.  We are simply setting up ourselves for the bow to work its magic.  One way to teach it is like this:

1:  find a part of your own bow where you can play detache 16th notes comfortably at any speed.  By detache I mean the simplest on-string stroke in which all you're trying to do is keep the pressure and speed even:  NOTHING FANCY, and we are not looking to hide the bow changes.  Start with broader, slower strokes, but get narrower and narrower and faster and faster until you are using very little hair for each stroke, but with exactly the same motion as you would have with 8ths or quarter-notes.  At this point you should be thinking of your hand and arm as going parallel with the stick.

2:  once you are able to do that, to bring the bow to life (so to speak) and get a sautille simply angle the motion of the wrist and forearm instead of staying parallel to the stick; this is initiated with the hand with the wrist like a hinge— the forearm is simply allowed to be free. 

Note that in sautille, in spite of the translation which is "jumping or hopping," the hair doesn't actually leave the string;  sautille is NOT an off-string  bowing; it is NOT simply a faster spiccato, for example.  It is its own unique stroke which has much more in common with detache.

The one other thing is to find the spot on every bow where the sautille works best.  Once you get the hang of it finding the best spot on different bows comes pretty quickly and naturally, but if you haven't learned the stroke yet and start in the wrong place you'll have trouble.  And, BTW,  not all bows give a good sautille;  it's one of the tests I always use when evaluating a bow.

This video gives a little chance to see that "angled" motion around 1:00.

Maybe the Menuhin shows even better.

—MO  Good luck.

   

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I have absolutely NO credibility regarding proper bow hold as I am a rank beginner playing the fiddle. [not to mention being left handed and playing the instrument right handed]

Disclaimer out of the way........

As a long time guitarist who plays a fair bit of finger style on both steel and nylon stringed instruments, I had always maintained significant, but not overly long, nails on my right hand [natural finger/thumb picks].

The thumb nail definitely interfered with developing a soft but consistent bow hold until my teacher pointed it out and I trimmed it down to "next to nothing".

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