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Hi Beth, guess what! I am doing a piece with my teacher which happens to be in a suzuki book (which one I am not sure n5??)! But I am not doing it from the suzuki book, I have the 'schott edition' sheet music, it's the Vivaldi G minor concerto RV 317, I am doing the whole 3 movements, it's a pretty concerto am certainly enjoying it. Another piece I am doing is the Melodie by Gluck transcription by Heifetz (heavenly!!!).

2 Responses
Posted: March 29, 2011

Hi beth!
As you are a violin shop keeper, you propably know the "hardware" quite well too?
Could you recommend me violin strings (brands, types) which do not contain ANY nickel?
I ask because I have nickel allergy and I've come to suspect that my fingertips STILL hurting after 8 months of practicing could be due to nickel in the strings.
For example, If I don't cover chin rest's...umm..those metallic parts, I get rash on my neck only for playing an hour!
We don't have a music store nearby which would specialize in string instruments so I don't trust them too much on this matter...

P.S. I hope gut strings are note the only option ;)

6 Responses
Posted: March 18, 2011

I played this for the first time tonight. what a fun song to play. I'm going to try the other bowing patterns too. I've been using the essential elements but decided to try some of the suzuki song because you did the videos for them. these are fun and a great change of pace. (i have a short attention span)


1 Responses
Posted: March 23, 2011

When should a beginning violin student start learning vibrato?

6 Responses
Posted: July 24, 2010

Patricia L
Hi Beth, I haven't been able to play the videos on my iPhone this past week. Just wondering if anyone else has had the same experience.

2 Responses
Posted: March 18, 2011

Beth, what might be the differences in a gold E verses a steel E ? Are there any real advantages to using the gold E ? Same with the D...silver or aluminum....what positives/negatives do you find in the difference ?

I'm getting some pretty horrible vibrations/buzzes when I play close to the bridge and that usually happens when my strings are about to unwind....ACK !! man..the price of those Obligatos just keeps going up doesn't it !!! <:-o

2 Responses
Posted: March 21, 2011

Hello everyone!

If any of you use Suzuki Books for your training, you are probably familiar with the notation used in the books when it comes to variations. Well I have been struggling with those variation for a while now and I think one of the factors has been because the book only gives you a partial notation on how to play a specific tune. I do well with the Twinkle Twinkle tune (simply because I think I have played so much that it has become part of my DNA - LOL), but when it come to other tunes I often get lost.

Today I decided that I would spend some time trying to transpose the songs into the appropriate notation so that I could follow it, or at least use it as a guide in order to always be able to find my place. Not only that, but I'm still working hard at my sight reading resolution and what better way than trying to kill two birds with one stone?

Well that was a great idea, but then I realized that I don't have a Music Notation software and upon visiting the Sibelius Music Notation website I got discouraged at the price tag and all the different packages that they have available. Being so new at this I simply got overwhelmed and decided to wait a while and start some savings.

Then just for curiosity I did a search for FREE music notation software to see what is/was available. To my surprise I found a great package that made my day. It's called MuseScore and I'm sure that some of you probably have heard of it. The software does have a steep learning curve, but there are online resources available and if you are crafty you can probably get really good at getting the most out of this software. It took me a little while to get started, but I just printed my first Suzuki variation music sheet and I am ecstatic.

The version I got is for a Mac and I don't know if they have one for a PC as well, but If you are looking for a music notation software at no cost, this might be the one for you.


13 Responses
Posted: March 14, 2011

Hi Beth, I've been trying to work on my detache. I noticed that when I put the bow on the a string at the middle of the bow I'm not in the "square position". To move upbow I need to engage the upper arm. So this is not a detache-correct? In order to use pure forearm motions I need to place the bow higher on the string-the upper third and up. Am I doing something wrong or is this due to the fact that I have long arms? Thanks, Enrique Lasansky


2 Responses
Posted: March 20, 2011

Beth Blackerby
I'm not sure what happened to Elizabeth's excellent question about "how do you know when to shift", so I'm re-posting my video response.
This discussion includes members-only video content

2 Responses
Posted: March 14, 2011

Hi Beth, I've been working on the techniques between detache and legato. I remember a previous video that you want to increase the downward pressure of the index finger to maintain an even sound, near the tip of the bow, by tilting the wrist slightly. My question is when using the legato technique at the tip should you, for a split second, release the pressure the index finger and increase the pressure of the pinky to help disguise the change in direction of the bow?

3 Responses
Posted: March 17, 2011

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