Maximum restless...

April 15, 2018, 1:27 PM · Funny things happening... Since I started my quest for a Viola I'm becoming more and more aware of my physiognomical limitations. At the moment I'm living with four of this species, and two of them I like pretty much. One of these seemed pretty hard to play, although measuring are almost the same (both 42,2 cm with 37,5 vs. 37,4 cm vibrating string length, the "larger" one with a 2 mm "higher" corpus) except for the chin rest. So I exchanged that Guarneri chin rest against the Flesch type chin rest of the other. (Already earlier I ditched the shoulder rest because the whole thing just became too high....) but the Flesch just was too low for the Hill tailpiece - so I tried completely without. No CR, no SR. And it works! (I'd even dare to say it works great... It's stable, feels ergonomic, fits perfectly under my jaw. No clenching, no shoulder lifting. Just had to get some piece of leather to add grip and protect the varnish.)
It doesn't work as well with an ordinary "rounded" tailpiece.
Anyone experience with that? Any drawbacks to play completely restless? I only know this from "historically informed" baroque players but this seems to me like something different...

Sure this will largely depend on individual anatomy as well as measurements of the instrument, but neither me nor that viola are far beyond avarage.

Replies (4)

April 15, 2018, 1:49 PM · ... not really optimal on the violin, btw. Just checked that out...
April 15, 2018, 4:30 PM · The only issue I can think of is security. Are you having issues with chin pain or chin discomfort?
April 15, 2018, 9:00 PM · Not at all. It feels just as it was designed for sitting there. Or, in other words, like my violin with the setup I worked in for almost 2 years (low Teka CR, heavily adjusted Wolff forte secondo SR).

Problems I could imagine are
- faster wearing of the varnish
- dampening of sound by having contact with the tailpece

April 16, 2018, 12:01 AM · I've seen a professor of (modern) violin (I forget which university in USA) who plays with nothing. He explained that he basically has no neck, so anything is too high for him below and above. He uses a cloth to protect the varnish. But he's definitely the only modern player I've come across who uses nothing. (I guess it's an advantage for not easily strangled?)

Sure, if it works for you!

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