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Bart Meijer

Ševcík III: his ten commandments

January 26, 2012 at 12:54 PM

1. To play beautifully, as well as practising diligently, pay constant attention to the dynamic signs (i.e., sounding levels) of the music.
2. To achieve exact intonation (i.e., the musical intonation), practise slowly and know the name of the note you are playing. Also, keep your fingers on the string as long as you can.
3. To acquire skill in bowing, practise all the principal examples of bowing.
4. To achieve a strong tone, practise at the point of the bow forte with a lot of different kinds of exercises.
5. When you practise bowing, play every note piano and produce a soft flute-like tone. When performing, keep the edge of the hair near to the finger-board.
6. To play rhythmically, count aloud the eighths and quarters and do not beat time with your foot. When playing a piece that you know, pace to and fro in time with the music.
7. When playing up the diatonic scale, don’t take off the fourth finger before you put the second finger on the next string.
8. When playing octave and tenth double stoppings, put the middle finger on the higher string.
9. Without active practice on the strings, the sound of the perfect fifth will not be pure.
10. The notes between two double bar lines should be repeated several times for practice.

(I don't understand 5, and I'm not sure 7 and 8 should be practised strictly; 10 has relevance only to Ševcík's exercise books.)

From Scott Cole
Posted on January 26, 2012 at 8:25 PM
I don't understand #7 either.
From Corwin Slack
Posted on January 27, 2012 at 2:33 AM
Number 7 is interesting it helps maintain the finger pattern by having as many fingers down as possible is my surmise. I tried it. Interesting.
From Mattias Eklund
Posted on January 27, 2012 at 5:34 PM
#7 is for hand positioning, equality of sound and eventually intonation in both single and doublestops.

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