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Ron
I have a question about playing the violin softly.  I have a nice violin that sounds great but it sound very loud to me while I am playing. The tone just seems to "explode" out of it, which in a way is I guess a good thing :)  In trying to play softly, at different parts of a song, I am having trouble getting the volume to drop. My goal is to be able to delicately start passages that then build into a crescendo, and otherwise try to sculpt the phrases, as I hear good players do.

I've tried playing with as light as bow pressure as I can, while keeping good tone, but it still sounds pretty loud.  I've also tried bowing with less hair by rotating towards the fingerboard, but I just don't hear much difference when I do that.  It still sounds as loud as when I'm using the all the hair.

Now, I can make the violin sound even louder by more pressure with a faster bow, but I just feel like I should be able to produce a softer, more delicate sound to further develop what I can do with expression (not much yet) while playing. To me, it sounds like I'm playing songs at a constant volume, and I don't like that.

There is one thing I do that gives some success at that is drastically reducing the bow speed, but I'm not sure if that is the correct way to do it.  Also, moving the bow nearer the fingerboard does help too.

Is the previous paragraph the right way to accomplish a softer sound or am I missing some basic technique?

Thanks & Happy New Year!
Ron

7 Responses
Posted: January 2, 2012

David Evans
Hi Beth,  I am a beginner currently working on Suzuki Book I.  I have started the Minute No 1 and trying to get used to using my 4th finger.  However, I noticed that I am experiencing some pain or ache in my left forearm especially as I rotate my wrist and forearm to reach notes on the G string.  Is this normal for a beginner and are there some exercises that you recommend?  David

3 Responses
Posted: January 4, 2012

Anne aMaudPowellFan
New Year's Resolutions

I have fond memories of January 2011, when some of us shared our New Year's  Resolutions with respect to violin playing. I personally found it beneficial to go public with my resolutions. I remained conscious of them during all of 2011. So, how about a new round for 2012?

Happy New Year to all of you and particularly to Beth, of course, with heartfelt gratitude for this great forum!

11 Responses
Posted: December 31, 2011

Mary Reeley
Would it be possible Beth to have some guided practice videos going thru the rhythm a week book

VIEW VIDEO

5 Responses
Posted: January 2, 2012

Frank M

Hello Beth:

This may have been mentioned by others already.  If so, my apologies.

I continue to have problems posting to the Community using the Internet Explorer 8 browser.  Basically, the advance editor window does not display scroll bars.  So I can only see the first  ten lines or so of text. Then what I’m typing scrolls out of view.

When inserting an image at the end of the text, it is also out of view.

And although the dialog window has the adjuster triangle in the lower right corner, it doesn’t do anything.

So to post something like this, I have to type it in Word or some other program.  Then cut and paste it into the editor dialog.

As a picture is worth a thousand words, I’ve attached a screen capture that was done while making a previous post, so that your programmer can see what I see.  Hopefully it will be large enough to be visible.

Thank you,

Frank



15 Responses
Posted: December 30, 2011

Joe (aka Pecos)
For those of you who have tried Passione strings, what is your opinion please??

1 Responses
Posted: January 1, 2012

brian laufer
kind of a odd question but is a fiddle a violin played a certian way or are they seprate instruments?


9 Responses
Posted: December 31, 2011

Jobby Johns
Hi Beth,

Thanks for creating this site! I really feel like I'm advancing in the violin, though I'm going to wait a bit before I try to tackle any decent songs. I've gotten to the first finger spacing pattern and was curious how long you suggest practicing the first pattern before moving on to the second (and likewise any future ones)? I practice about once a day.

12 Responses
Posted: November 14, 2011

Frank M

Hello Beth:

I am working on a piece from Applebaum’s “Building Technic with Beautiful Music”, volume 1 (page 17).  It is entitled “The Russian Tea Party”.  The key signature is Bb.

In measure 18 there is a slur that starts on G, and then slurs to Bb, then A, then back to G.  I’m having a difficult time trying to figure out the fingering mechanics of playing this.

If I try to land the third and fourth fingers as a block when slurring to the Bb, I can’t seem to get the pinkie to land before the third finger, no matter what position I use to hold my left hand.  If my pinkie were longer, it would be easier.

If this were played with a bow change or hooked bow, it would not be noticeable.  But since it’s a slur, it’s very obvious that the ring finger is landing prior to the pinkie.

On the other hand, if I try to land the pinkie and then quickly follow with the third finger (while playing on the pinkie), I cannot get the ring finger close enough to the pinkie to have the intonation be true, when I lift the pinkie for the slur to the A.

What makes this even harder for me is that last two slurs are “finger lifts” rather than “finger drops”  Drops would be doable for me.

Do you have any suggestions that I should try?

Thank you,

Frank



5 Responses
Posted: December 30, 2011

Frank M
Hello Beth:

I have another Community suggestion: could your programmer consider putting in a confirmation dialog for thread and response deletion?

There currently doesn't appear to be any for either thread or response deletion. This may be the source of members complaints occassionally when they say "my post seems to have disappeared". Without some sort of confirmation response, I could see how someone could inadvertently delete their response or thread, especially when using a mobile device, where you move through a web page by swiping your finger on the page

Best wishes,

Frank


0 Responses
Posted: December 31, 2011

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