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Jerry Wright
This discussion includes members-only video content

Greetings Violinlabers,

I don't know a lot about it, but I've somehow let myself agree to compete in a music competition on the March 24, 2018.  My understanding is that it's hosted by the National Federation of Music Clubs and I will perform two songs from memory with piano accompaniment in front of my teacher and a panel of judges.  They will then rate me on a scale of 1 - 5, with 5 being the highest (I think that is how it works).  Just typing those sentences has rippled panic throughout my body, I think I might throw up........... nope we're good. 

My mandatory song will be Gavotte in G Minor by Bach (Suzuki book 3, song 3) and I chose Minuet by Bach (Suzuki book 3, song 2) as my optional song.  
I have 5 more weeks to get ready and I could use your feedback on some focus items.  I've really tried to work on my intonation for this one over the past couple of weeks, I can hear that it still needs work.  

Here is the Gavotte, I don't have the entire Minuet memorized yet.  

Thank you in advance for your constructive feedback.

Jerry 

Jerry Wright
11 Responses
Posted: February 16, 2018
Last Comment: February 18, 2018
Replies

Jerry Wright
Posted: February 18, 2018
Thank you Urban.  It is encouraging to hear that some positive progress is being made.  

Urban Kristan
Posted: February 18, 2018
Wow Jerry, I think you've improved markedly from the last time I saw a video of you on here. Your playing sounds very smooth. 
I know you posted something about your frustrations with learning the violin - whether there's any point in continuing to play (or something to that effect, if I'm not mistaken). Anyway, I think this video is proof that it's definitly worth it! 

Jerry Wright
Posted: February 17, 2018
Thank you all for the feedback.  I did purchase Intonia a few months ago, however, I didn't really understand how to use it or it's benefit.  I understand what you mean by patterns now, so thank you for the video.  I will start using it immediately.
As for dynamics, I will work on that also, except there won't be any vibrato, I've only been at this for about 14 months and I haven't started learning that yet.  I am still trying to figure out tone and intonation.  I am afraid vibrato will just make things more complicated at this stage of my hobby, some day though.
Again, thank you all.  
Jerry


Ted Adachi
Posted: February 17, 2018
Hi Jerry,
Another suggestion, but more expensive than Intonia is a USB microphone (unless you already have one) with monitoring. 

I have found the Suzuki accompaniments really useful for intonation (especially on pieces like you're playing where the piano doubles the violin melody) but the violin is so loud under my ear, I can't hear that piano melody line.

But if I wear closed headphones and use my USB microphone to monitor the computer sound and the live violin, then I can hear the piano and my violin at the same time. So when the notes clash, it's pretty obvious and you can start making adjustments.

Beth Blackerby
Posted: February 17, 2018
This discussion includes members-only video content

I also should mention that Intonia is only for a single line of melody. It won't do a great job picking up your line with the accompaniment.

Beth Blackerby
Posted: February 17, 2018
Jerry, do you have Intonia software? It's the best $25 you'll ever spend. Sonia mentioned to look for intonation issues that may be patterns. Intonia will reveal those patterns. I'll make a video later on my favorite way to use Intonia, and I'll use your piece as the example.

Elke Meier
Posted: February 17, 2018
Ha, I guess Beth's practice test comes just at the right time for you :)

Sonia Lancaster
Posted: February 17, 2018
Nice start Jerry. Make sure you listen to your own videos, note those intonation issues - do you see a pattern? These are the ones to fix first. Around .56 (I think) you lost a little coordination between right and left hand. I think this may be the bowing you're not sure of, so try just doing the bowing on open strings.

As above - dynamics and phrasing. Can you do a little vibrato on the longer notes?

Looking forwards to seeing you improve. In 5 weeks you'll be a pro at it!

Best wishes
Sonia

Rustam Gill
Posted: February 16, 2018
Hi Jerry,
Your Gavotte sounds great already. I think in 5 weeks it can get to a very polished level. Ive listed some things I noticed, but plead take them with a grain of salt 😉:

-for the most part your intonation is quite good, but it can improve. Make sure that while practicing you often check any D, G, A, and E you play against the corresponding open string to make sure you are perfectly in tune. Eventually you will build an aural and kinesthetic memory but its still always good practice to check against open strings to keep yourself honest. Then when you play those Eflats and Csharps on the A string you can scrunch your finger (pinky and middle depending on if youre playing a eflat or csharp) up against the third finger (which is in tune) and get nice consistent intonation. Especially when you were coming down the scale frome the E string your intonation was a bit off.

-explore the dynamics of the piece. I think this is where most of your improvement can come from. Make sure and apply the dynamics markings in the piece. I know Bach didnt mark dynamics on his originals but Im guessing your version has some dynamic markings (forte, crescendo, etc.) Also, listen to Beths tutorial and many youtube performances of the piece (preferably by professional players) and try to apply points that sound good and resonate with you.

-above all, have fun! Im assuming this is a hobby for you (like it is for me) so who cares if things dont go perfectly? They probably wont 😊. Enjoy the experience.

Jim
Posted: February 16, 2018
I'll tell you the same thing I told my teacher before her auditioned for a local orchestra- they can't eat you. And, by the looks of those arms, they won't even try to beat you up, so you have nothing to worry about. Puking is off the table.

Seriously, that sounded good. Best of luck to you.

The only thing I noticed was when you concentrated more on the notes, you stopped moving, you may have lost a little intonation. around 0:43, 1:30 - 40

Ray
Posted: February 16, 2018
Best of luck!  We are all routing for you.