Though it can create some of the most beautiful music on Earth, the violin is not necessarily an instrument that sounds good, the first time you try playing it.
Or the second, or the third time! Learning to play the violin is a long-term commitment, and most often it takes years to find ease in playing it and to make a consistently beautiful sound. And even so, the instrument is very sensitive - take a week off from playing it and your violin will likely make some unpleasant noise about it!
So how long does it actually take, to sound good on the violin or viola? As a teacher, I would say that most students take around three to five years to start sounding good and probably 10 years to sound like a completely fluent player. This varies greatly, of course, with the amount of time a person spends practicing, whether the student plays in a group (that tends to help it go faster) and the quality of the student's instruction.
When did you begin to get satisfied and pleased with your playing? When did it really start to kick in for you? To be blunt, when did you really start to sound good?
Of course, this depends very much on your perspective. I'm not talking about how long it takes to be able to play the Paganini Concerto, just how long it takes to be able to play something for someone else, and have that person genuinely enjoy the sound.
Please participate in our vote, and then share your perspective, whether it is from your own progress or the progress of students that you have observed.
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