Well my last lesson got pushed back to Tuesday, because my teacher had something come up. We also decided out next lesson will be Tuesday, because Monday is Memorial Day. My husband comes home from a three month training exercise today. (YAY) So I'll want to spend as much time with him while I can the next weekend, and he'll be off work Monday.
Anyway, I'm trying to convince him to play the Viola. He used to play the violin when he was younger, but we're both afraid if he takes that back up, I'll get discouraged with his progress, and not be as enthusastic of my own, but the viola, we could play together, and even if he is much better than I am, won't bother me so much, it is a different instrument.
I'm sorry if I'm rambling, I have a lot to do today before he gets home, and I honestly shouldn't be on the computer, but I had some homework to do that required it, and couldn't stay away!
My lesson: The whole point of my blogs, lol.
I went in and I wasn't feeling my best, I had drank the night before, which wasn't the smartest idea I'd ever had. So I was hungover, but for some reason everything was just flowing, I don't know if it was because I wasn't thinking as hard, but my arm relaxed so easiely, and I corrected my little mistakes with minimum effort.
My teacher told me my playing was Greatly improved from my last lesson, and I hadn't practiced nearly as much this week as I did last week. We're working on the ending of Lightly Row. I've downloaded a metronome app for my Droid, and I'm going to use it this week while I'm practicing to work on my rythym, which I need to work on. It isn't terrible, but I could definatly get better.
I love when my teacher plays with me. She'll show me how to play a line, and (strum?) along with me to the beat, or sometimes we'll play together and she'll pause with me when I mess up. When she plays with me, it just makes my playing seem so much better than when I listen to it on my own. It makes me see my progress, I mean a couple months ago, I was scared to even pick up a violin!
On a short note, my birthday is coming up, and I'm going to try to convince my husband to buy me some strings to play around with. :) I'm looking at getting Tonica's. Anyway, Sorry this is a bit scatterbrained, but I really have three rooms in my house to clean, two pieces of homework, and then I have to get ready to go pick him up. It's our tradition that I dress my best, and buy a new dress for everytime he comes home. We're supposed to be going out to dinner tonight, so hopefully that will turn out well. I'm very excited. :)
Today is definatly a day that I love life!
First of all let me say that my last lesson went well.
I'm still not moving my wrist enough when I bow, so I have to work on that. She told me that my practice hours show, which made me happy. We're working on all of Lightly Row now, which I really enjoy. She also wants me to practice moving my ring finger from A to E and back again, she said I'll need that for a piece in the future, so starting to practice it now wouldn't hurt.
I'm still practicing my scales and all of that. I still love playing, but I find that when I am not doing so well in other parts of my life (I just did terrible on a midterm in a class I've been struggling with since day one.) I also find myself feeling like a failure playing the violin. I'm aware that I'm a beginner, and shouldn't be too hard on myself, but sometimes I just feel like nothing goes right in my practice.
I guess I'm just stressed out by school, and my husband deploying soon, but really I feel like the violin is the only thing that relaxes me, and I dislike that my other problems project themselves onto my playing. How do I leave that behind?
Well I went to my lesson on monday, and had an execellent lesson, as usual. I really love my teacher, she's very nice.
Anyway, I decided to postpone typing up a blog until I had gone to the Luthier. Which if any of you read that thread you'll know I have done so now.
I was having issues with keeping my violin in tune, every week I had to have her retune it, I don't know how yet. Anyway she told me I needed new strings and specifically told me I needed a new E string.
So I went, and asked him about it, he told me he didn't think I needed new strings, but I mentioned that my teacher said I needed a new E atleast. He went in his back room, came out with a new string and replaced it immidiately.
I asked him what kind of strings were on my violin, and he said D'Addario. Which I have come to gather he likes a lot. He sells their rosin in his shop aswell.
Did I mention that I love to hear him play on Carmen? He used to be in the Orchestra here, before leaving to start this shop. He plays so beautifully. My teacher and Luthier are friends, they knew each other back when they were both in the Orchestra together. She's still in it, although its on hiatus right now.
On to my lesson! I went in as usual, happy about how much I had accomplished this last week. My left wrist no longer bends as much, and as long as I pay attention somewhat, it stays straight. My teacher says I need to move my wrist more when I bow, which I'm working on. I find that if I bow next to a door, I feel the muscles I need to be using better. So I'm working on that the most this week, while trying to memorize, and be comfortable playing the first line of Lightly Row, so we can move forward to the next line next week.
I still practice scales, and my Twinkle Variations in practice, but when I'm getting bored I add the first line of Lightly Row. It's a song I'm unfamiliar with, so that makes it more exciting for me. She recommends my putting the cd into my computer to listen to how it's supposed to be played if I get lost. Right now though, I'm happy with practicing the line, and getting the timing down correctly.
Thank you all for your encouragement on my video I posted yesterday, I'll try to get another one up next week.
So after reading many of the subjects on recording your practice sessions I decided to record pieces of my own practice, I'm not uploading them all to youtube, but I thought I would upload one for you all to see.
It's really quite terrible, but I'll give myself moving room since I haven't been playing long. Sorry for being in my Jammies, it's 2am here.
Perhaps next time I'll record my scales, and more of my practice lumped together. Feel free to comment, but please don't be cruel, my confidence in my playing is still very fragile.
I find that I'm doing the same things I have been doing the last couple of weeks, but compared to where I was when I bought Carmen... (I was afraid to hold her.) to now!
My scales are slowly getting better, I'm definatly comfortable holding my darling, and it's getting so much easier to relax my bow arm when I play. I'm still working on my bending left wrist. ("Darn you I said stop bending!") And working through my Twinkle Variations. I have memorized the notes to it, and as long as I'm not nervous continue to remember them.
I, of course, still have sooooo much to learn, but the entire process makes me happy. Not that I don't have my days when I'm frustrated with my practice, but just that I'm learning is such a beautiful process. I cannot wait until I can play the piece I brought to my first lesson as my "goal piece."
Maybe I can get my teacher to take a picture of me playing at our next practice, I'd have her record some of it so I could see myself playing outside of a mirror, but I'm not quite ready for that with my Twinkle being the way it is.
I love this instrument, and I definatly picked the right one for me. Thank you all for being here with me on this journey, and I hope it's a journey I'll continue to take through out my lifetime.
Sorry for not updating, but between being sick and trying to catch up on homework, I've really been exhausted.
I'm afraid I slacked off my practicing some the last couple of weeks, but now I'm back to it, and how I missed it. I took my lesson and I find myself still bending my left wrist some. I am working on it though. Everytime I start to play that is the first thing I check, and when I pause in my playing, I check it again. I try to make sure quite a few times while I'm practicing to check my left wrist, I don't want to get into a terrible habbit of leaving that wrist bent.
I also realized recently that the more relaxed my arm is, the better my playing. I really need to focus on relaxing my right arm before playing, my teacher notes a different in our lessons as well.
So this week I'm practicing my scales, which I love doing, and all of the Twinkle Variations, while still watching my left wrist and relaxing my right arm.
My teacher tells me that my violin needs restringing, I'll be calling the Luthier that I bought it from soon to ask him about it, as I'm unsure how to go about it. I realize I must bring it in to him, but what about the different strings? Do I just let him put whatever strings on it he sees fit? Or do I have a say in it? If so how do I choose what strings would go best on my violin? It's all so confusing.
I've looked up several of the threads on this forum about strings, but I really think I'll just have to go see the Luthier and ask him what he thinks. In one month my husband comes home from his training, and that's when we'll get it restrung. (restrung?)
On another note, I find when I'm stressed out about my studies, lifting my violin and playing a few scales puts me right back on track. Oh, how I love my violin.
More entries: April 2010
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