Vibrato...and Holding the Neck?
I know there are ninety gazillion (approximately...give or take a jillion-illion...to be technical about it) threads on vibrato but there's something I don't really see addressed.
I just can't seem to get vibrato and it's more that I'm trying to hold the neck, and you can't move something while it's holding something...I...think?
I can do a bit of vibrato, though not at a fast enough rate to really sound nice (yet), only on D and to an extent, A. On G and E I lose the plot. Especially E.
I have watched so many videos and read so many tutorials and did ask my teacher at one point (when I was still going for lessons) and I still can not understand how people do this...I keep hearing that you're not supposed to really support with your left hand at all but no matter what chin rest I use, no matter what angle, no matter what shoulder support, I'm sorry, I simply can not "not hold" the neck at all. It doesn't happen for me and...I don't "get" it, I guess you'd say.
Anyone else have this issue? How does this really work? Mechanically, I mean. I apologize to those who have answered so many threads like this before; it's probably just as frustrating to read repeat vibrato threads as it is to be the sufferer. ;)
Thanks in advance!
Holding the violin neck should mean it is laying in your hand, not that you actively grab it. As long as you do this vibrato, intonation and changing the position will not be working well.
You DO support the violin neck with your left hand. There are three points of contact : the side of the 1st finger at the base, the edge of the thumb and the pad of the finger playing the string.
Melanie, although I have a tension-free, stable setup with my shoulder-rest, I still often like to use left hand support. The violin/viola neck then rests principally on some part of the thumb, and
I do not hold the neck either Melanie. My thumb touches the neck and is my guide and the rest of my hand doesn't touch the neck until seventh or eighth position. Have you tried practicing your vibrato in third position on the E string because this made it easier for me to learn the basic motion.
This information is tremendous...thank you so much, everyone...there are some great tips that I hadn't even considered. I'm going to read this all a second time now and then go try all the tips. I do feel lots of tension in several of the places listed and I think that's where I need to start.
Agree with many others. The thumb should not squeeze, and the side of the index finger can occasionally contact the neck in lower positions. Keep a relaxed left arm and hand. Tilting the hand so that the pinky is right over the string can reduce thumb squeezing, I think.
My teacher used to make me practice scales while she picked at my thumb, detaching it and letting it go. after some of those I could relax while vibrato.
It took me years to get a decent vibrato. I discovered that I was gripping the neck between my thumb and the side of my index finger. It gave a great sense of stability - too much stability in fact, because my hand was locked in place and could hardly move at all. To break the habit I started by leaving a small gap between the neck and the side of my index finger.
I like The Gap too, but we seem to be in a minority.
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