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This discussion includes members-only video content

Hi Beth. As promised here's my first video. I deliberately did not do any re-recording so you can see my weak points and where I make my mistakes. Major issues that I have are: 1) Finger action on the left hand. 2) Training wheels for bowing. I can do straight bowing and stay on the sounding point of the violin but only when I'm in front of the mirror. I go away, and my bowing becomes terrible and horrible to watch. 3)Bow hold because of, as you can see, the broken finger. Any insights that you have, please feel free to share. Thanks. :)

5 Responses
Posted: July 22, 2011
Last Comment: July 24, 2011

Posted: July 24, 2011
Hi, Tricia, it's okay. My fault as well for not updating my profile before posting. Thanks, I need all the luck I can get. I barely had the time to practice last week, hope I can make it up.

Beth, it's a great video! You answered all my self-addressed questions on why my bow skirts across the violin. Thanks for putting it up. I'll work with this video and forget about playing songs for a while.

Thanks again!

Beth Blackerby
Posted: July 24, 2011
This discussion includes members-only video content

Donna, I hope this helps. I've been meaning to add this to the Maintaining a Straight Bow series, so your post spurred me on.

Posted: July 23, 2011
Sorry Donna Marie. Anyway, I enjoyed the videos following yours.

Best of luck. Tricia

Posted: July 22, 2011
Hi Beth. Thanks for the note of encouragement and the tips. I think I'll place a mirror in front of me the next time I make a video. Is there a way to improve my vantage point when I play the violin so that I won't have to rely on the mirror? While I was doing the video, I really thought I was bowing at the middle and not close to the bridge. I was surprised when I watched the video afterwards. Thanks for the tip on the finger action and bowing. I'll see if I can train my hand (and arm) to do what you suggested. Tricia, thanks... Although, I regret to say, this is my first time to put up a comment on the community page. I think you confused me for Donna Davis... I'm currently making changes on my profile so that this will not happen again.

Beth Blackerby
Posted: July 22, 2011
Hi Donna. Thanks for posting video. It gives me so much more to work with when I can see it all in action.

Good job Donna! Your general postures are looking quite nice! Your bow hand (broken pinky taken in to account) and your left hand look good. Take a look at your left hand when you're playing on the A string. See if you can keep your hand closer to that shape and relationship to the fingerboard when you're on the E string. That way you have a shorter distance to go from the open E to the 3rd finger.

I'm glad to see your sounding point errs on the "too close to the bridge" than "too close to the fingerboard" side. That's a much easier problem to deal with. Having said that, since the 16th notes of this Twinkle variation require that the bow to move swiftly, you will get a more focused sound if you play a tad (1/8 inch) closer to the fingerboard.

As for bow straightness, you're on the right track. I have a suggestion, and it's a little difficult to articulate. I need to make a better video on this anyway, so I'll put that on the list. But I'll try nevertheless to explain it. When we bow and open and close our elbow, the upper arm wants to move in tandem to the lower arm. So when we open the elbow, the upper arm wants to pull back, and when we close the elbow, the upper arm wants to push forward.

What is supposed to happen is the opposite. When we open the elbow, the upper arm pushes forward (just a little), and when we close the elbow the upper arm should pull back.

It's really more of a pumping or a punching motion. I don't know if any of you have ever had a punching ball. It's a blow up balloon with an elastic loop. You hold onto the loop and punch. The ball bounces back and forth off of your fist. The motion of that is essentially the fast middle-of-the-bow detache motion.

Again, easier to show than explain. I hope to get to that one soon. It's an important concept!

Great start Donna!!