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Emily Hogstad

Emily Visits Violaland, Part 6/?

July 20, 2012 at 2:43 AM

The big day has come! I now have a 15" rental viola in my possession!

Here's two movements from the first Bach suite on my first hour of the new 15" instrument. No, it's perfect by any means - it feels pretty slog-like and skimmy - like I'm riding a bucking bronco - and quite a few musical ideas are lost while I work myself trying to find the notes - but it's not much worse from the recording I did on the 14" back in February, and it's better than what I was expecting. Feel free to throw some tips out in the comments.

Unfortunately, I have a pain in my neck after playing. It's on the left side, and seemingly nerve-related. But 1) I broke my vow from earlier in the day and practiced way too much at one go (couldn't - help - it --- am - addicted - argh), 2) I realized toward the end of the session that my shoulder rest / chin rest combo is too high even at the lowest setting (I may, gasp, be going restless in future), 3) a neck pain in the left side gels with the assessment Professional Violist Friend gave at the last lesson, namely, that a newly relaxed bow arm has resulted in transferring tension to the left hand, 4) I tend to have an easier time eradicating pain in the left arm than right one (perhaps because I'm right-handed, and can left the left arm relax and recover for longer easier?), and 5) I'm feeling pretty tense today, so I was ripe for a little injury. Time to pop some Tylenol, take some deep calming breaths, and go to bed. Keep your fingers crossed that I can eventually iron out whatever's causing the pain. Because this is a real viola sound. This could never be mistaken for a violin. And I like that. Very much.

From Tom Holzman
Posted on July 21, 2012 at 6:22 PM
Good luck! With your current problems/ailments, you are clearly no longer visiting but living there. I hope you have a teacher who can help you make the transition so you do not hurt yourself.
From Emily Hogstad
Posted on July 21, 2012 at 8:45 PM
Thank you, Tom! I do have a great teacher! I don't get to visit him very often but he's given me a lot of great information about eradicating tension and such. :)

I have more gist for Part 7... Spoiler alert: at the moment, I'm playing pain free!

From Tom Holzman
Posted on July 22, 2012 at 6:44 PM
Glad to hear the spoiler alert. Enjoy!

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