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Barbara Habel
Update after some polishing.......

Comments and suggestions welcome!!!
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10 Responses
Posted: July 19, 2019

Creating My 1st Bowline on a 3-Page Piece
I am working on a bowline for the 4th piece in Book 4. I have only done partial bow lines before as I needed them, but now I truly appreciate another's work on the uploaded bowline sheets on the Resources page, especially for multiple page pieces. My 3-page piece will be ready in a couple of days. I'll email a link to Elke as requested. Thank you Elke in advance.

I am totally stuck in the fast string crossing sections of this 4th piece, and it it exactly what held me up last year in the Christmas cantata. So I cannot move forward without lots of bowline work and hope to finally fix my right hand issues! Since it didn't exist yet, I am making it now. This is a lot of work! Anyone who wants to learn note reading, this would be a great exercise for that. In my case, it is making me enter every single dynamic, articulation, slur, text, etc. and really making me look at my piece in a detailed way. It took me 1.5 hours just to get started as to how to add a pickup measure!! (found that one in the help area) and still don't know how to do one of these from scratch to get it from a full orchestration to delete down to just two instruments, so I'm using an existing piece and modifying it. It is finally moving along!

Whew! But this is starting to get to be so much fun using all the necessary keyboard shortcuts. Kind of relaxing in a way. I've obviously not practiced today!

0 Responses
Posted: July 21, 2019

Timothy Smith
Opinions- Do I need Another Violin Teacher?
I posted another similar thread. Decided it was too long winded so I deleted it. I am re posting on the same subject, hopefully trimmed down.

Just curious how many of you use another violin teacher or of you don't use a teacher, do you feel you can still learn just as well?

My violin teacher is moving away. I am trying to decide if  I can learn only using online resources. It's been maybe three weeks since I've had a lesson and I feel like I'm beginning to slip. Having that routine seems to have been helping me. I am concerned that not having a regular meeting with a teacher of some sort might cripple my advancement.

The nice thing about a teacher was she could immediately see things and suggest corrections. There's also the time/money factor. A 15 mile drive to the city and $30-40 for a half hour lesson minimum. On the positive side there's a few teachers who teach well for adults on my material.

9 Responses
Posted: July 19, 2019

Kobe Tsang
My Violin Journey
First of all, I just want to say that this is definitely the best community on the internet! I'm so grateful for everyone's amazing feedback and encouragement, it makes this adventure so much more enjoyable. 

I also loved this concept of posting videos of myself playing (never done that before). This really helps to keep my motivation up to learn the next song and push on. So that got me thinking, maybe I'll use this as like a progress journal and post updates of my progress in the same thread (that way I wont push other people's threads down) 

It would be interesting to see how this goes in a year time! 
Thank you for everyone whose travelling this journey with me!

24 Responses
Posted: July 14, 2019

bow hold exercise
So I just spent three days at a fiddle camp, which was amazing! Great to mingle with all these players and levels and see so many different styles and techniques, trade notes, talk shop and so on. And then having to learn things on the fly by ear is a very good thing to do -- exercises a different part of the brain. I am both exhausted and invigorated.

Anyway, one thing I wanted to pass on was this. One of the instructors, a young woman named Stacey, had this incredible bow hold. Maybe the best I've ever seen. I wish I'd run up and filmed it. Her wrist and fingers and thumb were supernaturally fluid, dancing and lilting and rippling up and down -- it was like calligraphy, or a flock of birds flying or something, sheer poetry. I was transfixed. Of course, her playing was superb. She had learned fiddling while young (it is a huge tradition in the Maritimes) but had later studied jazz violin at uni.

Anyway, so after that workshop I rushed up to her and said, Your wrist! Amazing!!! So she kind of laughed, like, Ha! Then she said she had always had what is called a "good wrist," but when she was at uni, she had to take this one classical course. And that teacher took one look at her and said, Okay, you're going to put your bow down for five weeks (!) and we are going to do this exercise. Stacey said she was outraged ("I'm paying all this money for this?!") but did as told. Five weeks, no bowing, just this exercise. And she told me: Best thing I ever did. The exercise in question was that bow hold "pencil exercise" that you can find online, the one where you hold a pencil like a bow and just raise and lower your fingers from the knuckle only (not sure if Beth discusses it but it's pretty well known -- here is one example at 4:54). Stacey said she did this basically non-stop, like all day long. (For weeks! I had done this exercise before, like maybe a grand 10 minutes in total, before going, Okay, I got this...) So a big lesson for me to take these kinds of exercises more seriously, since I tend to get discouraged/bored/annoyed and throw in the towel before they have a chance to actually take effect. Anyway, just passing it on in case anyone wants to try!

7 Responses
Posted: July 19, 2019

Sonia Lancaster
A while ago someone was asking about etudes  and their order of playing. I came across this that matches up etudes  and repertoire. It only says the composer name and not specific studies, but it may be a start.

Im playing a Dont Etude at the moment and came across a paper that did detail what they are used for and order to play them

2 Responses
Posted: July 19, 2019

Visited a luthier

Had to share this as so exciting (and my husband and friends just glaze over when I tell them haha). I visited a luthier for the first time!! I decided to treat myself to wittner tuner pegs as I was finding the fine tuners really awkward and to get him to put new strings on as well (avoiding doing it myself but I have the old dominants to put on my horrid stentor 1 so will be facing the fear soon :)). He put on Infield Reds & also ended up changing my sound post as it wasn't flat/ was leaning forward and contacting on edge rather than the top (basically rubbish and could cause a crack in violin). It was with him for a few days so I used my original stentor for practice - which actually hurt my ears when I play! (I feel I can't sell it as it would be unfair to subject someone to it). When I got it back yesterday I couldn't believe the difference!! It sounds so much better!! I thought it sounded OK before but it is so 'ringy' now! Tuning is also REALLY easy which is a good job as I'd forgotten how often you have to tune whilst new strings settle. He showed me the violin room with loads and loads of beautiful violins, told me about the violins in his safe, talked about bows and said he could do more with the sound post in the future when I was more able to work with him and tell him what I wanted from the sound (probably a way off!). He also said I would need a new bridge in the future as it might cause me problems when playing in higher positions etc. (although OK for now) and showed me how to know inferior soft, fast growing wood (which mine is). Such an enjoyable time I spent so long in there my husband had to come and find me as he was sick of waiting and he is a very patient man. I'm not sure what I expected but it was sooo interesting and informative. I am actually considering taking the stentor in to see if worth having adjustments made so I can play it without feeling like crying.

4 Responses
Posted: July 20, 2019

Violin Lab Scale approach
Hi all :)
Yesterday I watched the series on Scales and was so excited about the way Beth made a perfect system for playing 3 octave Scales, I couldn't wait to start trying it, and boy oh boy I learned a lot.
I got to see what happens "behind the scenes" when shifting, also learned a great deal about positions and how to create an alternate route to get to the destination, Beth was totally right it gave me such confidence when I knew exactly where to go. 
I did make a challenging fingering which to be honest before knowing this would have seemed so scary and intimidating to me, especially (Position 4-5-7) but after applying everything Beth said, One: I memorized the fingering so fast like the back of my hand, Two: I expanded my knowledge on where the notes are, Three: I can honestly say that I feel no intimidation or fear when approaching those tricky positions, Four: Minimized the times I make mistakes with intonation which is pretty awesome!, Five: When you do things yourself they tend to stick in your mind lol rather than following what Scale books suggest

I've attached in this post  my personal fingering and also crammed as much information as I possible could in the sheet music (using musescore) for this scale (G Major) so anyone can use it or correct it if you notice mistakes or things that can be added.

Thank you all :)

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4 Responses
Posted: July 18, 2019

Angelina- Shifting/Practice on plotting customized finger placement

6 Am

Good morning,

This is what I do to break away from a current assignment, I take several clean copies of music manuscript to practice different approach/route on shifting and finger placement. Decide and determine which sounds the best and ergonomic, interestingly, I enjoy doing it and experimenting. A good brain exercise besides relieving boredom and a great task/spacer to rest from your current project/piece.

Thanks classmates...
This discussion includes members-only video content

3 Responses
Posted: July 19, 2019

Karen Grace
wolf tone
Hello Beth/ fellow violinists,

One of my students has a 'wolf tone' on his E string. I'm looking into what to do about it. I've read somewhere that the best thing to try first is to try changing it to a thinner 'gauge' string. I was thinking of suggested he buys a pirastro tonica string, but I'm wondering if that is considered a thin 'guage' string?

Thanks in advance for your help!


2 Responses
Posted: July 19, 2019

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