Printer-friendly version
Zlata Brouwer

3 Tips to improve your tone as a beginning violinist or violist

July 8, 2013 at 11:32 AM

Question: "Hello Zlata. My name is Wendy. I've been playing violin for 19 months. Now I'm kind of lost because I don't know what should I practice to improve the tone. If you have time to take a look at my video and give me some advices I'll be really appreciated. Thank you!"

Answer: In this video I will give 3 tips on tone improvement for beginning violinists and violists. I will handle the mistakes that most beginners make on tone creation.

Tip 1: Bow straight! The sound of the violin is different depending on the place of the bow on the string. Going from one place to another on the string while bowing gives a sound you don't want. You can't see if you're bowing straight, so practice in the mirror and correct yourself.

Tip 2: Bow in the string, not over the string. Do this with the weight of the arm, not pressure. Pressure will kill the tone while you are creating it. Weight will create a nice rich singing tone.

Tip 3: Have a relaxed bow hold. Although the bow hold can seem very unnatural in the beginning, try to relax your fingers (gummy bears!). A bow hold is something in motion, not something rigid. The motion in your fingers should come from your under arm. Your fingers move along with the bow, your bow doesn't move along with your fingers.

Thank you for watching Violin Lounge TV!

Do you have questions for me on violin or viola playing? Post a comment below or send an e-mail to


Violinist and Skype violin teacher at Violin Lounge

This entry has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.

Facebook YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Los Angeles Philharmonic
Los Angeles Philharmonic

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra
Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra

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

Anne Cole Violin Maker
Anne Cole Violin Maker Shopping Guide Shopping Guide

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