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How much cat-strangling can you get away with in G1 violin?

(15 Posts)
Fraxinus Sat 15-Jun-13 15:06:36

Apparently, you can mitigate the awfulness of a cheap violin by putting better strings on it.

FrameyMcFrame Wed 29-May-13 14:39:29

Left hand position

Is your DD holding her wrist and palm of hand up against the neck of the violin?
The link shows proper LH pos

WhiteWine1nTheSun Wed 29-May-13 14:28:27

Thanks everyone. She's secure on her dynamics and rhythm etc thanks to her piano, and I think she'll do OK on the aural. It's just the scratching and screeching. Sounds like she'll get through though from what's been said here.

I agree that the instrument is partly to blame, and it's never going to sound wonderful, but there are definitely some serious technique problems. Bow is only at right angles when she concentrates. And apparently her teacher keeps telling her to hold her left hand differently, but she forgets. (not sure how it's meant to be?)

I think these are all things she can work on before the exam though.

Moominsarehippos Wed 29-May-13 13:56:33

eh? I'm tone deaf.....

What is a good make of metronome? I know there are all sorts of Apps (he has a tuning one - I now know that I cough in G btw), but it would be easier if he had a standalone one that ticked (rather than flashed).

mawbroon Wed 29-May-13 13:53:42

Louds and softs Moominsarehippos

Moominsarehippos Wed 29-May-13 13:52:36

What the hell is a dynamic contrast?!!

FrameyMcFrame Wed 29-May-13 13:50:21

she'll be fine. They really don't expect a great sound on the instrument at G1 violin. As long as it's in tune, the rhythm is correct and she tries to add dynamic contrasts as marked in the music she will do ok.
Also make sure she knows her scales really well.

Good luck (I'm a violin teacher btw..)

Moominsarehippos Wed 29-May-13 13:42:30

That's what I was thinking! At the moment we are paying about £28 a quarter rental.

frogs Wed 29-May-13 13:39:55

Moomin - You can get a basic student violin outfit for £50, but it'll be rough as a robber's dog. If you can afford to spend a bit more then it's well worth doing so. Some of the chinese-made instruments are not at all bad (primavera, stentor etc) but the standout for me are the Romanian ones called Gliga. I spent just under £200 on a 1/2 size instrument for my 8yo, and it was light years better than the 1/4 size she'd had before that, and not that much more expensive. When she outgrows it we'll sell it on to someone else and get the next size up, so the final outlay really isn't that much.

These are the ones, the couple who import and sell them are incredibly helpful: Gliga violins

Good instruments keep their value, so you can often sell them on

Moominsarehippos Wed 29-May-13 13:36:20

We had a bowzo and it wasn't much use!

AMumInScotland Wed 29-May-13 13:34:32

Is she moving the bow at right angles to the strings? A lot of the screechy noises are when the bow goes at an angle and scrapes down the string instead of going neatly across it.

If she is working towards G3 the chances are her teacher wants her to just have a go at an exam as practice to get used to it anyway.

Moominsarehippos Wed 29-May-13 13:31:43

Has she done her pre prep exam?

DS was screetchy for a long time then he just seemed to start hitting the notes correctly.

We rent a violin and I'm wondering how much to buy a half decent one?

mawbroon Wed 29-May-13 13:29:23

I remember from learning violin that it sounds awful for about 5 years.....

And yes, I did get the hang of it eventually, honestly! smile

morethanpotatoprints Wed 29-May-13 13:14:10

Hello WhiteWine.

I think its supposed to sound as pleasant as it can on a mass produced cheap instrument.
I say this because I hear the same sort of sound from all the dc playing violins, irrespective of the grade. Unless you intend to spend thousands on an instrument they do sound to the untrained ear as scratchy.

WhiteWine1nTheSun Tue 28-May-13 22:39:47

DD has announced that her teacher is putting her in for G1 later this term. She's 11, and has been learning since September. She has a subsidised 15 mins a week shared lesson at school costing £1 a week. She's barely played the violin at home until last week so I'm quite surprised her teacher thinks she's ready.

She does piano outside of school and is working towards G3, so her general musical ability is good, but her technique at the violin (to the untrained ear) is pretty poor. She can play the pieces along with the CD but it's very screechy and just doesn't sound that great. I'm happy to take her teacher's word for it if she thinks she'll be OK but just wondered how pleasant it's meant to sound!

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