December 19, 2009 at 7:01 AM
The semester is over and I, once again, have subsisted. The past few months for violin, my primary goals were learning Lalo’s Symphonie Espagnol and attaining better sight-reading ability. Sight-reading has been the bane of my violin existence ever since I was a smallish child. Although it’s difficult to find people who like sight-reading, most violinists at my level can muddle through it. I seem to be an exception. Some sort of psychological block occurs when I sight-read and it prevents me from demonstrating anything I know about meter, key signatures, and rhythm. I’ve been trying to develop my sight-reading prowess by sight-reading duos and going over various orchestral excerpts. It’s hard to tell if I’ve improved or not, but I suppose I will find out when I get home because my friends and I are having a chamber music party on Sunday. As far as Lalo, I have successfully completed the first four movements and I have performed the first 3. My assignment over winter break is the fifth movement. My fingers will be seeking vengeance shortly.
Sounds like you are doing well. I find sight reading to be my weakest link. LIke everything else with a violin, it takes practice, so you have to do as much of it as you can. Anne Horvath might have some good ideas on how to advance this. Good luck and Happy Holidays.
I used to think I was a good sight-reader, but as I became a better player, I realized that I'm not as good as I thought. Maybe you are better than you think!
The "Inner Game of Music" has some ideas about the attitude to take when sight-reading.
Karen's point is a good one. I recently went to a sight-reading session with a local community orch. We did some fairly difficult stuff (at least for an amateur like me), and I did much better than I had thought I would. So, you may be better than you think. Does your teacher have any suggestions?
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