July 2009

1 month

July 27, 2009 18:48

Hi, everyone.

Today it's been one month since I started playing the violin again. Not long, I know. I didn't remember how good it feels to play this incredible instrument. I think I've made good progress so far, but I think I have a different mind now (I mean, different than it was when I was younger and played the violin). I now know what I want, the tone I want, the importance of intonation. I didn't really know before what I wanted and was not very aware about important aspects of violin playing (like intonation, as I said before, string crossing and so on).

I thought that if I could play the entire piece or etude without stopping, even with mistakes, it was enough. It's not anymore. I'm happy I started playing again.

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July 22, 2009 18:39

Since the last post I've been practicing a lot. Since then I only took one day off, because I went to the movies to watch Harry Potter and when I got back I had only a couple minutes to practice. Also, Monday was my mother's birthday and I couldn't do my full three-hours practice, but I managed to do some work with open strings, scales and a simple piece I'm having fun with.

I was very surprised today, by the way, because I spent only one day away from my violin and after practicing I was (am) so tired! No part of my body really hurts, but I am really tired, needed to sit down a bit . Almost like going to the gym, haha.

The first movement of the Vivaldi A minor concerto is much better than it was, and I finally managed to play it entirely by heart (and even closing my eyes while playing during the whole movement). I still need to work on it, though. I need to clean it, specially, of course, the faster parts and the octaves and tenths. I also need to improve the dynamics.

I play (just once) the other movements of the concerto everyday, because by doing that I find it much easier later on to really learn the other movements, since I already know a bit of the score and the intentions of the composition, I guess. I find the second movement really easy (technically), it's just about shifting, and playing in other positions than the first (up to the fifth). Nevertheless, I think the second movement is the most beautiful musically.

As I'm (was) focusing on the first movement, I'm (was) spending about an hour on it everyday. The first movement is not that bad anymore, though, and I'm thinking about splitting this period of time from now on, half of it for the first movement and the other half for the last. Or else I could practice the first movement in one day and the last in the next.

I'm also testing d'Addario Prelude strings, and I'm really liking it. I think it's a good product for the price.

Best wishes for all!

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Starting All Over Again

July 12, 2009 21:55

Hello everyone. My name is Fernando Almeida and I'm 23 years old.

 I've played the violin and the piano in the past, but had to quit for many reasons (I was starting college, didn't have time to practice and was also very unmotivated back then). I played the piano fairly well (started when I was 10/11), but didn't play the violin as well (started when I was 16 but played only for two years), although my progress rate was quite good, I think.

  Now I've finally finished my undergrad course and have more time to practice. I also have fallen in love again with playing the violin and want to take part in a community orchestra soon. There are so many pieces I'd like to play - for instance, one of my short term goals is to play Bach's Double Concerto, and one of my long term goals is to play Mozart's A Major Concerto.

 So last 27th June I picked up my violin again and am playing since then. I still don't have a teacher, for several reasons (mainly because I have to save a lot of money for my graduation party, which will be in September). I plan to start having classes again in the next few months, though, and I already have a teacher in mind.

 Now I'm relearning the Vivaldi A Minor concerto. The truth is I'm a bit tired of it. I played it a lot when I was younger and also heard a lot of students playing it, but I like it anyway. I am also practicing scales (Flesch), doing some position etudes - 2nd and 3rd mainly (Sitt), trying to improve my vibrato, etc. I'm practicing about 3 hours a day, and intend to continue this way.

 I'll be back soon!



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