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Evening Beth, I've been practicing Twinkle and other notes keep popping into my head. They are bouncing around in my head in measures: 4,6,8, and 12. If I write something down is it possible for you to look at it and let me know if it is utter rubbish? As you know I have no musical background, just listening to what I'm hearing inside. :\

11 Responses
Posted: June 7, 2011

Hi everyone!

Quick question . . . Does anyone have a recommendation on what to use to re-glue those little foam pads on the Bon Musica shoulder rest that is in contact with the violin? I want to use superglue, but I'm thinking that is not a good idea.   8-0

Much appreciated.

2 Responses
Posted: June 7, 2011

Question.....Beth, I have been working on Pachelbel and I've found myself playing on the edge of the hairs..tilting the bow "towards" me instead of away....for some reason. I get nice clear notes when I do that, usually in the ares like measures 18-23 (second violin)

Is that a bad thing ? Should I work on NOT doing that ?

2 Responses
Posted: June 6, 2011

Hi Beth; just wanted to say, I'm really enjoying this whole series on Expressive Phrasing - so helpful and clear. I've known musically what I wanted, but didn't know technically how to achieve it! Thanks Beth, it's making a huge difference to my playing!


1 Responses
Posted: June 5, 2011

Joelle Blais
Hi Beth et all! I just wanted to say, this is really amazing! I just started to learn my violin yesterday, and I feel so excited! This is really a great cite that is excessable and not too intimidating. How awesome! My friend and I are starting our musical experiences on a blog. Follow us and see if you want to get some laughs and such. It's where I'll be starting to post videos of my progress. Beth, you are amazing! -Joelle P.S. I'm having trouble downloading the Beginning pdf file, and I've never had trouble downloading a pdf before. Does anyone else have this problem?

3 Responses
Posted: June 4, 2011

I LOVE this site! It is 7am and I have already "taken a lesson" and practiced for an hour, what a gift to be able to do that. I can review your videos anytime to clarify or fine tune a skill. Beautiful way to start my day.

18 Responses
Posted: May 27, 2011

Javier de Miguel
Hi all I think it was a good idea to have audio to accompany the exercises. thanks for the great work you do for our community.

1 Responses
Posted: June 4, 2011

YIPPEE-OH HAPPY DAY! I have my violin back. It's together again. I had to remake the sound post, bridge, take the finger board and nut off to tweak both, and lastly work on the neck. Not only that, but when I was on the main land awhile ago I bought new bow-many thanks Beth for the webcast!-I knew what questions to ask and what to look for in my price range. I picked up a Prell, apparently it's made in Germany in about the 1920s. It was more than I had wanted to spend but as soon as picked up the bow it was like an extension of my hand. While there the owner had me play- he told me after- on a $12,000 violin and $20,000 bow! Since this feels like a new day in my playing-oh and the sound has more colour than it did before a lot, I'm curious about people's New Year's resolutions. How are they coming along? Although it seemed slow, I am progressing. I would like to tweak the original resolution and make deliberate practice as my main goal. Yes I still want to be able to post 3 videos- an expressive Twinkle, Bach's Minuet No.3 and a Sad Romance by the end of year (you have to push yourself right?). But I believe you said it somewhere Beth, about deliberate practice and also practicing 10,000 hours or 10 years to be good. Well, That my friends, is my new 10 year goal. 10,000 hours in 10 years. Which works out to 2.75 hours a day. Well, that's my goal what's yours?

5 Responses
Posted: June 3, 2011

glenn kotnik
I'm new to this site and find it to be a great resource. I have some opinions about your answer to the question "I'm 60 years old, is it too late to learn to play the violin?" I didn't really start learning the violin until I was about 42 y/o. Since then I've had a great teacher and have been practicing faithfully for 15 years. However I often wish I had put those 15 years into a different instrument. Why? I love the violin, but even after 15 years it is hard to play a piece with a sound others could really enjoy listening to. I think that to play the violin with consistantly solid intonation and solid tone requires starting at a younger age. Someone putting this much time into the piano, harpsichord or even cello would by now be rewarded with a much more pleasing sound. That is not to say that I cannot play in tune, but to solidly and faithfully hit each pitch with almost inperceptable adjustment over the course of a piece still eludes me. The ability of a nonmusical listener to detect imperfections in intonation is remarkable. To eventually find the correct pitch is not enough to please a listener. Other instruments have their difficulties but the violin is a harsh mistress, (to quote someone). Adult beginners on other instruments can often reach a level where they play very pleasingly, not so the violin. Also, when you advise an adult on starting the violin, ask why they want to play the violin. Do they hear themselves playing the Mendelson concerto pleasingly? If so, they may be thinkingly unrealistically. A number of years ago NPR had an hour long program on adult beginner instrumentalists. They had samples of many adults playing nicely on many instruments, even the cello, but not the violin. The adult violinist they interviewed who had played for 10 years spoke passionately about her instrument, but no sample of her playing. So older adults who take up the violin need to understand that it's unlikely they will ever completely rid themselves of that wisp of Jack Benny quality, and play well enough that others will want to hear them play. I'm not saying I regret taking up the violin and putting so much time into it, but it's really a private and Quixotic endevor, and there are very appealing alternatives. It's not unusual for me to put over a year into learning one or two pages of music, the Adagio from the Bach g-minor, Bieber Passacaglia, Chausson poem, Stravinsky Elegy, etc. but never really play them well enough that I would want anyone but my teacher to hear me.

18 Responses
Posted: May 26, 2011

Breakthrough! For me this is huge. It is with bow hold. Previously I had tried to balance the bow on the middle finger and had failed. I knew in theory that the bow pivots on the middle finger and the role of the index finger was for maintaining an even bow pressure (at the tip). Some how I was refusing to let go of my death grip. And then I when I was watching and studying Beth's index finger in the Expressive Phrasing videos. I listened and watched how the index finger is used and then just now in the middle of practice, without realizing it, the death grip was gone. I was able to lift the index finger and apply at will. THANK YOU BETH!

8 Responses
Posted: May 30, 2011

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