Mutes for bridge-sensitive instruments
About a year ago, I lost my original Menuhin Shield mute, which I loved, and replaced it with the white model of the Alpine Mute.
I've never really been satisfied with any mute I've used on this violin, though, which is sensitive to the tiniest deflections of bridge replacement, and whose resonance is essentially totally killed when you put a mute on the bridge.
Anyone have a suggestion for a lightweight, easy-to-use mute that is suitable for orchestra as well as solo playing that requires a mute, and that provides muting color without killing the sound?
(My teacher had me try a dollar bill, which is probably actually the most acceptable thing I've tried, but obviously not suitable for performance.)
Have you tried the WMute? Not cheap, but it might work well for you.
The Wiessmeyer mutes are awesome, but they are at their best when on the bridge, and they do put a ferocious block on the sound. In a good way, but if you don’t want that, then...
I'm not sure if I got your point, but think I had a similar feeling about my own violin. After trying several models including the Alpine, what worked best for me was thinning down an ordinary Tourte model to just a little bit more than half thickness. It has lost about 40% of its overall mass that way. Now the tonal color changes with the mute on, but it doesn't sound muffled and still keeps a nice overtone spectrum.
I have been using a 5 cm piece of 6 mm OD plastic tubing for years. Works a charm. For the SI-unit impaired a 2" piece of 1/4" tubing should work just as well. ;)
This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.