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Hi guys,

I finally decided to learn some etudes to help set my left and right hand technique. As you can see, I'm starting quite fresh with them but have already noticed how useful they are for warm ups and drills for the fingers. It was hard for me to get into them at the beginning because I normally jump straight into practicing certain pieces. But I'm trying to be a better violin student ;-) and I have Beth to thank for inspiring me to give them a go. Thanks so much and I hope you are having fun practicing your favorite etudes! Please leave your favorites and I look forward to checking them out. 
14 Responses
Posted: August 10, 2017
Last Comment: August 14, 2017

Posted: August 14, 2017
Thanks so much everyone for the wonderful feedback^_^

Jaime you're sounding really great with a drone! Thanks Beth for the tip, I will be sure to keep an eye on my intonation using this method. 

Rustam, I'm glad I'm not the only one struggling with my bow issues. Thanks a lot for the advice, I really appreciate it. I need to get used to making a big sound for sure. 

Rustam Gill
Posted: August 13, 2017
Hi MsPolkaDotz,
You played all these etudes amazingly. Great job!

I am hard pressed to find anything to critique, but I will try :-)

I think maybe you could play closer to the bridge in the detache etudes (like the first few Wohlfahrt's). This will allow you to really sink into the strings when you play and get a much stronger sound. The reason I notice this is because, of course, that I am working on the same thing, though on a different etude (Kayser). My teacher always reminds me to play more into the string, closer to the bridge and really draw out a big sound from my violin. When I do it right, I really feel and hear the difference. I think its a matter of doing it enough till we get used to that being our default sound. Maybe you could try this.

Posted: August 12, 2017
Beautifully done!

Jaime - Orlando , Fl
Posted: August 12, 2017
Practicing with a drone! What a magnificent idea! First time ever with an actual etude!

Before I have limited my drone practice to pure scales, but this is another whole different ball game! This is etude 1 of Wohlfarht Op. 45 book. Its been like an epiphany for strengthening intonation!!! Thank you Beth! I know Ms. P. will do AMAZING with it! :0)

Jaime - Orlando , Fl
Posted: August 12, 2017
Practice with a drone? Beth that's perfect! Will try it... although I think Ms. P. is spot - on already! :0)

Posted: August 12, 2017
Your tone is really gorgeous and so clear, I love your playing and can't wait to see you develop through harder etudes :) 

Beth Blackerby
Posted: August 12, 2017
Wonderful Wohlfahrt! Be sure and practice with drones to make sure that your intonation stays ultra perfect. It's virtually impossible for a violinist to develop perfect intonation without a reference. Good job!

Mary Freeman
Posted: August 11, 2017
Your tone is absolutely lovely
I enjoyed listening
It is hard not to speed up or slow down with these etudes
You are such a quick study that that tiny wrinkle will be gone in no time
You make me want to work on this to keep my Rhythm nice and even
Well done 

Posted: August 11, 2017
Hi Jaime🙂 Haha, I'm really playing catch up with you guys on the etude forefront. They are quite enjoyable to learn and excellent for sight-reading. I'm hoping this will help me gain better control with my bow hand. As you can see my focus goes all in to the left hand during practice so it's a welcome exercise to stretch my brain especially when it comes to bowing technique for these etudes. Thanks so much!

Jaime - Orlando , Fl
Posted: August 10, 2017
Ms P, welcome to the Wohlfahrt bandwagon! I echo your little YEY in your video! Etudes are certainly a very effective way to build up  intonation, bow strengthening and consistency, as well as reinforcing string crossing performance!

May I say you do a wonderful job and those  years of music study with the piano have paid off tremendously! You are already an inspiration to us here in the VL family! Keep it up! :0)

Posted: August 10, 2017
Hi Barb, Maria and Diane🙂
Lovely to hear your feedback. I could not agree more, etudes are quite revealing when it comes to technique! For instance the constant opening and closing of my bow arm seems to confuse my left fingers to no end.. Hence, co-ordination is out of the window.

Diane, my bow hand goes on autopilot  tilt when I'm not paying attention to it.. it's a constant battle😑. I need to start wearing my earpeace for practice again I think.

Maria, isn't it just a proper workout for the 4th finger?! I think these etudes are great for strengthening our pinky and setting the 1-4 hand frame. 

Looking forward to trying out different bow variations for these etudes. Thanks so much guys. 

Posted: August 10, 2017
Great job, MsPolkadotz. I think you are very strong in your left hand. Your arpeggios were grand. I would concentrate on further developing your detaché bow stroke. I would suggest to get the hair flatter, use a little more weight into the string, and open up more from the elbow to get those notes to sing!

Also, those 1st small books you suggested were great. They did remind me of those initial primary school books for alphabet. Wonderful suggestions!

Posted: August 10, 2017

The # 4 was my fave especially for my 4th finger training, I noticed  prior that I get fearful when I see 4th finger in a piece- now, not anymore thanks to this piece.

You did it very well and you do have a beautiful sweet tone [your original bow is back because the voice of your violin is restored once again]. Try those etudes in position too, I am still slow to process those notes up there but one by one I could picture some of them.Laterally or linear no problem but opposite on different strings I'm still slow hopefully with practice I will ingrain them in my head :)

Barbara Habel
Posted: August 10, 2017
Dear MsPolkadotz

You have a very lovely vibrato. It is so nice to listen to.

It is good for you to do etudes. They reveal the little flaws in your left right hand coordination.

This is especially so on the Kreutzer #2. You played this much too fast for your present coordination. You like to take the finger onto the next string whilst the bow is still on the old string. It makes for the inconsistency in sound.

And, as it is rhythm week here on VLab. I would highly suggest you using a metronome on the etudes. You like to race ahead and then slow down again.

You did well on the Wohlfahrt. You have the ability to play without stumbles in your left hand and play the pieces through at a good speed. And you have a straight bow and are consistent on the sounding point (with the exception of the last Wohlfahrt).

Etudes are something to keep coming back to. They should be with you for the rest of you violin playing life.