Viola Affects Violin?
I am a Violinist that's been playing for three years. In those past three years, I have been pretty okay with intonation. I picked up the Viola about eleven months ago. For about nine months, my viola was the same size as my violin, so transitioning from violin to viola wasn't difficult as all. But recently (about two months ago), I exchanged that viola to a bigger one (Fifteen inch Viola; My violin is a Thirteen inch).
Ever since then, switching from violin to viola has been hard, and it feels like my intonation hasn't been as accurate as before.
If I play the violin, I tend to play flat. When I play viola, I'm either too flat or too sharp. I've been so frustrated and I don't know what to do! It seems like my intonation is getting a little bit better; just a little. But I feel like it's not coming out the way it was before I switched to a bigger sized viola.
Has anybody else struggled with this problem? If so, how can I overcome it?
Thank you for reading.
Switching back and forth should not be a problem, unless there are some impediments.
2" is a bigger jump up then most people make at one time. Was there a reason you went to a 15" viola rather than a 14"?
I play 14 inch violin and 16 inch viola so I assume your 13 inch violin and 15 inch viola have comparable relationships to each other.
On the viola the forearm slants more and we may be tempted to bend the wrist to compensate, which does not help the hand to open more. More elbow swing can help to play strongly (and in tune) on the lower strings
Adrian said something that made me think of something else. A lot of violinists put their left thumb across from 1st finger. Some violists prefer the thumb to be flexible where it is but mainly hang out between the first and second finger. This makes it easier to make the reaches on viola.
Viola will help your violin playing. Like warming up in the on-deck circle with a lead donut on your bat.
Remember intonation isn't really in your left hand, it's in your brain. Whether you're playing violin or viola, when you play you are constantly making adjustments to be in tune -- and that starts with your ears and is governed by your brain. That's why slow precise practice with very good concentration works -- you're literally training your brain how to hear, and once you know exactly what you want to hear, your fingers will figure out how to give it to you.
How long does it take you to "adjust" when switching between the two?