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Violin Basics First




Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Copyright © 2011-2013 by Virtual Sheet Music Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this e-book shall be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise - without written permission from the publisher. No patent liability is assumed with respect to the use of the information contained herein. Although every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this e-book, the publisher and authors assume no responsibility for errors or omissions. Neither is any liability assumed for damages resulting from the use of the information contained herein. Trademarks All terms mentioned in this e-book that are known to be trademarks or service marks have been appropriately capitalized. Publisher cannot attest to the accuracy of this information. Use of a term in this e-book should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark. Virtual Sheet Music® and Classical Sheet Music Downloads® are registered trademarks in USA and other countries. Warning and Disclaimer Every effort has been made to make this e-book as complete and as accurate as possible, but no warranty or fitness is implied. The information provided is on an “as is” basis. The authors and the publisher shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss or damages arising from the information contained in this e-book. The Book’s Website Find out more, contact the author and discuss this e-book at: Published by Virtual Sheet Music Inc. 29911 Niguel Road, #6992 Laguna Niguel, CA 92677 (USA) Email: [email protected] Website: ISBN 978-0-9831899-0-9 1 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Table of Contents Introduction 5 About the author 5 Acknowledgments 5 The Violin 6 The Bow 6 Accessories 7 Holding the Violin 9 Children 9 Adults 11 Holding the Bow 12 Children 12 Adults 14 Tuning the Violin 15 Caring for your Violin 16 Music Notation Basics 17 The Notes 17 The Rhythm 18 Accidentals 23 Playing the Violin 24 Open Strings 24 Playing Pizzicato 24 Playing with the Bow 26 Having fun with Open Strings 28 Fingerings 30 Place the 1st finger on the G string 30 Place the 1st finger on the other strings (D, A and E) 32 Place the 2nd finger on the G string 34 Place the 2nd finger on the D string 36 2 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Place the 2nd finger on the A string 38 Place the 2nd finger on the E string 39 Review the 1st and 2nd finger on all the strings 41 Place the 3rd finger on the G string 43 Place the 3rd finger on the D string 45 Place the 3rd finger on the A string 48 Place the 3rd finger on the E string 51 Miscellaneous songs with 1st, 2nd and 3rd fingers 52 Shifting fingers to create new notes 56 Shift the 1st finger on the G string 56 Move the 2nd finger on the G string 60 Move the 3rd finger on the G string and introduce the 4th finger 63 Placing the 4th and last finger 67 Place the 4th finger on the E string 67 Appendix 69 Using the 4th finger instead of open strings 69 Dynamics 70 Tuplets 72 Music Ornaments 74 Double, Triple and Quadruple Stops 77 Bowing techniques 79 Sciolto or Détaché 79 Staccato, Martelé (or Martellato) 79 Accentato 80 Spiccato or Balzato 80 Saltellato or Sautillé 81 Legato and Slurs 81 Legato-Portato 81 Legato-Staccato 82 Legato-Balzato 82 Picchettato 83 3 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Gettato or Jeté 84 Col Legno 84 Tremolo or Tremolato 85 Introducing other positions 86 How to know when to change position A peek to advanced techniques 90 93 Harmonics 93 Left Hand Finger Extensions 97 Vibrato 99 Left Hand Pizzicato 101 Special Effects 103 Physical Exercises and Relaxation 106 Before practicing 106 During practicing 111 After practicing 117 1st Position Chart 121 Key Signatures Chart 122 Glossary 123 References and Resources 128 On the web 128 Books 129 Index 130 Notes 136 4 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Introduction Thank you for your interest in Basics of Violin Playing. Your decision to start discovering and learning to play the violin is a very clear demonstration of your commitment to great music and we applaud your efforts. This e-book may be read step-by-step starting from the first page, or it may be used as a reference manual, it’s up to you. If you are a beginner, we suggest you start from the very beginning, i.e. learn and discover about the instrument and its parts, how to handle it and how to start playing. You will be surprised how much you will be capable of once you have reached the last page! Enjoy your learning! About the author Fabrizio Ferrari is the Founder and President of Virtual Sheet Music Inc. an innovative American web publishing company, established in 1999, which provides products and services for musicians. Fabrizio began studying the violin at the age of 8, earning a master degree in Violin Performance at the Milan Conservatory in Italy. Between 1992 and 2003 he had a very intense professional career, performing in the most prestigious opera theaters and symphonic venues in Italy and in other countries, among those Teatro alla Scala in Milan. Between 2000 and 2001 he obtained master degrees in Music Composition and Electro-acoustic Composition. In 2004 he moved permanently to the United States where he is currently involved in the development of many projects such as the Musicians Page website and community, a social network for professional musicians, and in the research and development of new products and services for musicians worldwide. He lives in Orange County, California, with his wife Laura and their two children Sofia and Edward. Acknowledgments This e-book could not have been written without the unwavering and tireless support of my wonderful wife, Laura, also a violinist, who helped me assemble and organize the educational material and who worked with me to shoot some of the pictures you see in this e-book. Many thanks also to my sweet daughter Sofia who has been amazingly indulgent during the photo shoots, and to my son Edward who patiently waited for his sister downstairs. Finally, I wish to express a special thank you to my long time friend, Orlando B. Manta, as well as Janet Teas who helped me with the final proofreading of the e-book. 5 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) The Violin Scroll Peg Box Pegs Nut Neck Fingerboard Upper Bout Waist (C-Bout) F-Holes Bridge Tailpiece Lower Bout Chinrest End Button Fine Tuner The Bow Winding (or Pad) Stick Adjusting Screw Frog Ferrule Bow Hair 6 Tip Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Accessories Shoulder Rest A shoulder rest is often needed to help hold the violin more comfortably. For children, it is usually better to use a soft pad or a sponge. The shoulder rest attaches to the underside of the violin. Rosin The rosin (also known as colophony or colophonia resina, or “pece greca” in Italian) must be applied to the bow hair every time you feel the bow is “slippery.” Of course, the more you play your violin the more often you will need to apply the rosin. To apply rosin to the bow air, just rub it gently from the bow ferrule to the bow tip while being careful not to slide it over the ferrule or the tip. Usually 4-5 rubs are enough for 5-10 hours of playing. Rosins come in a variety of colors, from nearly transparent, to red, to black. Darker rosins usually have a stronger friction effect, but they are also harder and can break more easily. Mute Some music pieces require a “mute” to create a softer, quieter sound. You can also use the mute just to make your violin sound “quieter.” The mute is placed on your violin bridge and comes in different shapes, models and materials, from wood (the one shown above) to rubber, metal or even leather. The most common models are the Tourte Mute, the Heifetz Mute and the “Heavy Practice” mute in metal, which allows you to almost completely mute your violin sound for practice purposes. 7 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Tuning Fork Electronic Tuner A tuner is necessary to correctly tune your violin. There are several different kinds of tuners, from traditional tuning forks, to sophisticated electronic tuners. You can of course use a piano or keyboard. 8 Basics of Violin Playing (e-book edition) Holding the Violin Children A correct posture is paramount for both adults and children. For children it may be a challenge to keep the correct position for an extended period of time. This picture shows the correct beginning position. 9 Classical Sheet Music Downloads® If you want to download this piece entirely, please click the link below: For support and assistance: [email protected] © 1999-2011 Virtual Sheet Music - All Rights Reserved Virtual Sheet Music, Classical Sheet Music Downloads and Virtual Sheet Music logo are all registered trademarks of Virtual Sheet Music, Inc. in USA and other countries.