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This discussion includes members-only video content

This is played almost entirely at the tip of the bow. I can understand how much easier it is to be at the square and just open and close the elbow for the entire piece. But do we get more dynamic range and tone color by being in different parts of the bow in this piece? I would love to see a performance video of this where all the appropriate parts of the bow are used throughout the piece. Or is this upper third playing ok?
6 Responses
Posted: October 3, 2019
Last Comment: October 9, 2019

Posted: October 9, 2019
It would certainly show more musicality to explore different parts of the bow in this piece. Thank you for the suggestions. Very helpful to hear viewpoints on this topic. I'm still a newbie on bow distribution at the tip for expression!

Grant Wolfe
Posted: October 8, 2019
Another thing you could do is include some of the second position fingering suggestions...this also gives you different tonal colrs other than just 1st and 3rd 

Grant Wolfe
Posted: October 8, 2019
Dianne...the detache bowstroke is played predominantly in the upper half of the bow, especially in Baroque music...in this piece tone color and phrasing are achieved more by varying the bowstrokes from a sort of connected detache to a very precise martele, and everything in between...Roy Sonne has an excellent video series on this piece. 

Posted: October 6, 2019
Thank you, that helps. Bowing at the tip resembles the questions I had as a beginner of, "How do I know when to shift?" or "How do I know how much bow to use?" These things do not seem intuitive at the beginning. My understanding of bowing at the tip is strictly for bow distribution on some of the Wohlfahrt etudes or Suzuki 1 pieces (long short short long short short etc.) or the recent video tutorial which included instructions for specifically bowing at the tip in a certain section of the piece that seemed like it could have been played elsewhere by accident. I know intellectually that things have the capacity to be lighter at the tip, and if we have a piano passage or tremolo we could go there, but just when to go there in pieces overall still evades me, although I see the more advanced repertoire has consistent bow usage at the tip, so the teachers are relating that in those cases. Studying earlier Suzuki or piece videos, as Barb pointed out, is almost impossible to learn from, as they are student videos and vary very widely in their bow usage.

Elke Meier
Posted: October 5, 2019
This is Vivaldi, which means it is a baroque piece - and baroque means generally rather light playing, not heavy romantic bow strokes. In the G-minor tutorial Beth talks a lot about the kind of playing that is needed for baroque pieces, as well as in the video in the practice course where she explains playing of the different styles. Even for this reason alone I would not play the beginning of this piece anywhere close to the frog. It is very hard to taper notes at the frog. I am nowhere near this piece but once I get there I will definitely play it in the middle of the bow. I wouldn't play it close to the tip like the guy in the video. I find tapering and making the notes sound light and springy and yet with good tone the easiest in the middle of the bow - certainly easier than at the tip, and tons easier than at the frog.

Barb Wimmer
Posted: October 4, 2019
This discussion includes members-only video content

I don't know Dianne, good observation. I was looking for a professional like Joshua Bell or Hilary Hahn utube and surprised couldn't find one. still looking but my thoughts are that it sounds scratchy at the frog. Maybe has to do with the lots of emphasizing on the notes? And it is definitely easier to play closer to the tip then the frog, that song.