Printer-friendly version
Note: This article was submitted by a member, and does not necessarily reflect the views of or its editors.
Krista Moyer

Push Me, Pull Me

May 28, 2013 at 3:26 PM

I’ve recently discovered what floats my boat. While individual practice fills the gap between technique and desired outcome, I found that I really prefer to play with others. Lessons have always been so much more fun when my instructor plays duet with me. I was chalking that up to his expertise and my thrill in finally playing a piece well enough to allow for collaboration; but this weekend I realized that isn’t the case.

I dithered about bringing my violin on the camping trip. Would I have time to practice? Would my campmates tolerate the noise? Do I really want people to hear me play? Am I brave enough to play in front of people? Is the weather going to cooperate? Could I avoid damage to the instrument?

In the end, I bit the bullet and packed my case. The thought of four days without touching the violin was too depressing not to bring it.

To my delight, I did find some downtime Sunday afternoon to play a little. I started with some simple tunes. My playing wasn’t perfect, but my friends said they were enjoying it. Soon, someone wandered in from another campsite to listen. He excused himself only to come back a few moments later with a viola and a music stand. I put some of my music up, and we started the first piece. He plays a good deal better than me, considering he had to translate to alto clef in his head, and together we played several pieces before we both had to leave for other activities.

I can’t even begin to express how satisfying that experience was for me. I loved the collaboration, and working to blend the sound. The experience pushed me and pulled me at the same time. This is exactly what I need and want from playing the violin. I can’t wait to do it again!

From Christina C.
Posted on May 28, 2013 at 5:44 PM
Welcome to the madness. It's a wonderful one and there's no reason not to start enjoying it as soon as you learn how to string a few notes together. Hopefully you'll be able to find some more opportunities at home?
From Laura Lyon
Posted on May 30, 2013 at 4:22 AM
What a great and encouraging post. I am pretty much at that same place - feeling like I want and can play with others now (besides duets with my teacher which are always enjoyable!), but feeling quite shy and nervous about actually doing it. To get over my shyness about playing in front of others, I have taken to playing out of doors when the weather is fine. Just knowing that my neighbors and passers by can hear is desensitizing me to worrying about playing in front of others.
From Krista Moyer
Posted on May 30, 2013 at 11:19 AM
Playing outside sounds like a wonderful idea. I think once this heat wave passes, I might do that myself.

This entry has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music: Check out our selection of Celtic music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Los Angeles Philharmonic
Los Angeles Philharmonic

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases

Thomastik-Infeld's Dynamo Strings
Thomastik-Infeld's Dynamo Strings

National Symphony Orchestra
National Symphony Orchestra

Violins of Hope
Violins of Hope Summer Music Programs Directory
Find a Summer Music Program Shopping Guide Shopping Guide

ARIA International Summer Academy

Borromeo Music Festival

Metzler Violin Shop

Southwest Strings

Bobelock Cases

Johnson String Instrument/Carriage House Violins

Jargar Strings

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop


Los Angeles Violin Shop


String Masters

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine