Tuesday, August 21, 2007
The right elbow is an important pivot. Don't use the shoulder and upper arm to move the bow. Hold them still and use the forearm/elbow to move the bow. Keep the wrist straight with the forearm. This technique will allow me to play these passages faster and more accurately. Now that I more or less know the scale runs in the Lully Gavotte and the Boccherini Minuet, I'm ready to start playing them faster. The next piece in Suzuki 3 that I'll be learning is a Scherzo by C. Webster, mostly 16th note pairs, played Presto. Controlling my bow arm this way is an important tool for mastering these.
My staccatos need a lot of attention. Start and stop each note with intent. Bite into the string and then stop without lifting the bow.
We went through these two pieces in great detail. After a few missteps, I was able to play through the Gavotte fairly well. We did mark several passages that need specialized attention.
Then we turned to the Minuet. I had several questions about how to finger certain passages, and we played each note in them, one-by-one. Finally we played Suzuki's Moon Over The Ruined Castle both in 3rd and 4th position.
Other general notes:
- Especially in 4th position, curl the fingers and use the fingertips; keep the unused fingers close to the strings.
- Consider which finger is making each shift - both up and down; let the thumb do the reposition, but keep it loose on the neck.
- Follow dynamics even when learning the piece pizzicato; better to imprint the dynamics from the start than try to add them later.
- Pay attention to, and plan the bow actions.
- Learn to prepare for each change a few notes ahead of time, so that by the time that change comes it can be done without having to fumble into it at the last moment.
Mods to my practice routine:
- Watch the bowing elbow, always.
- Watch the right thumb - keep it behind the second finger.
- Practice trills, making sure the thumb is loose behind the fingerboard.
- Practice scales using 16th pairs; increasing tempos.
- Practice scales using staccato; singles, then hooked, etc.
I feel so indolent in this lessonless part of the year.
I think I will add different bow strokes to my scales..especially hooked bowing.
Links to this post: