Welcome to "For the Record," Violinist.com's weekly roundup of new releases of recordings by violinists, violists, cellists and other classical musicians. We hope it helps you keep track of your favorite artists, as well as find some new ones to add to your listening!
Augusta McKay Lodge, winner of the 2015 Juilliard Historical Performance Concerto Competition, explores rare unaccompanied violin music from the time of Bach on this debut album. "Although today we think of Bach as being a lone figure in composing for the unaccompanied violin, his work actually grew out of a long-standing tradition going as far back (and further!) as 17th century Biber’s iconic Passacaglia from the Mystery Sonatas," Lodge said. "Bach could well have heard many performances of such works, and indeed personally knew some of these composers such as Pisendel (featured on the album). These are hidden gems that deserve to hold a place in the current canon of works." The album features solo violin works by Biber, Locatelli and Pisendel, as well as lesser-known composers Nicola Matteis and Thomas Baltzar. BELOW: Augusta McKay Lodge performs Alia fantasia, by Nicola Matteis:
Violinist.com Interviews, Volume 2: Violinist.com editor Laurie Niles' second book features exclusive, one-on-one interviews conducted over the last six years with 26 of today's best-known violinists, including Midori, Gil Shaham, Hilary Hahn, James Ehnes, Rachel Barton Pine, Augustin Hadelich, Ray Chen, Daniel Heifetz, Jennifer Koh and Lindsey Stirling. Amazon.com (Ad)
What is it like to learn the violin, viola or cello, as an adult? As a teacher, I warn adult beginners that they can expect something like a cross between kindergarten and physical therapy. If you can accept those two conditions, then you can go quite far! But it means that you have to resist feeling embarrassed about truly starting at the beginning, and you need to prepare to do more repetitive work, physically, than you might expect.
When you learn a foreign language, you start with the alphabet, numbers, and very simple words and phrases such as "hello." When you learn to play an instrument, you will start with simple tunes and exercises, and you probably won't dive right into the more complex tune that inspired you to play. Of course, you should still listen to that tune and keep it as your goal, but learning basic fluency comes first.
In your lessons, don't be embarrassed to play because you aren't good at it. I've noticed a phenomenon in adult beginners: sometimes they talk their way through lessons to avoid playing! They don't really know they are doing it, but it just feels more comfortable because they know how to talk, and they don't yet know how to play. Be aware that you might feel weird about doing something that you aren't yet good at, particularly in front of someone else. Embrace the fact that you are going to make mistakes, play badly, squeak, misunderstand instructions, get it wrong, etc. It's all part of the learning process. You didn't learn to walk without falling down many, many times. Falling down -- and getting back up again -- is part of what gave you your balance. A good teacher completely understands this and is there to help you find that balance. Keep reading...Comments (17)
In an effort to promote the coverage of live violin performance, Violinist.com each week presents links to reviews of notable concerts and recitals around the world.
Chee-Yun performed the Glazunov Violin Concerto with the Portland Symphony Orchestra.
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