Sautille and Suzuki book 4
So we have reached Perpetual motion, which has sautille in it. At least is supposed to be played with sautille. And sautille is hard and in fact our teacher said that it is completely ok to play it without sautille, which I completely agree my daughter being only 6.
Perpetual motion used to be in book 5, so why an earth has it been moved to book 4? What it the point as I would bet that only a few kids can play sautille at the time they reach the piece. I just dont understand the teaching logic here. Maybe there are some here who could shread some light in this matter?
In my mind moving to Bach double after Vivaldi would be a very logical technical move but this perpetual motion just does not seem to fit here. But there must be some reason I just dont understand.
Also if anyone have practise ideas for the sautille, I would gladly hear them :) Sautille seems much more difficult thatn a good vibrato and it took a year for my girl to develop a good vibrato.
Sure I myself can produce some kind of sautille with my big hands and long fingers and big heavy full size bow, but doing it with a 1/8 violin with small fingers looks quite hard.
Every kid I've taught has learned Sautille by the end of the Seitz concertos. I don't see it as being that difficult of a technique, based on how quickly kids have learned it (in my experience). I would characterize it as 5x-10x easier to learn than a decent vibrato.
Given that in Japan, it wasn't unusual for kids to reach book 4 by age 6, it's probably not considered unrealistic.
One of the highlights of the Suzuki program is that many of the pieces in book 1 can be used as studies. So my recommendation is to go with your teacher's suggestion that "The Bomb" (Bohm Perpetuo Mobile) be learned for the notes and not the bowing technique -- at this point. Meanwhile, go back to the Perpetual Motion in Book 1 and use that as a study to approach sautille gradually. The advantage is that your child will not have to think about the left hand at all. Eventually, the bow will lift off by itself and your child will discover on her own how to make (allow) that to happen. Unless, as was suggested, the equipment is holding her back, she will probably learn this just by messing around. That's what little kids do. At the age of 6, this is not something to agonize over.
Erik, would you be opposed to posting a link to a video of your method? I'm quite curious, and a visual learner. It's hard for me to visualize each step without actually seeing it.
I would not expect any student in Book 4 to have a well-developed sautille or spiccato. Almost every single child I have heard play the Bohm PM has played it at least somewhat on the string. Google some kids (or Suzuki teachers) on YouTube and you will see this is the norm. That's not to say that you shouldn't be working on the eventual bowstroke and then incorporating it back in. But I would learn it slowly on the string first.
The importance of the bow's qualities cannot be over emphasized!
I suspect that many book 4 students don't play the Bohm fast enough to get a sautille, as opposed to a brush stroke.
I would be surprised if that was the case, Lydia, since the songs that precede it require significant speed in some parts, unless the students are just allowed to pass them way under-tempo? The bohm is fast but most of the speed is in the right arm, which I think makes it much easier.
Thanks Erik and everybody else again, I very much value your discussion :)
Erik, I consider a sautille to be what happens when the bow moves fast enough that it simply comes off the string. It's the stroke for, say, the Schumann Scherzo or the 3rd movement of Wieniawski 2.
Perhaps you should consider getting her a better bow (carbon fiber?). Since you appear to live in Europe, the pedagogical question might be better served if you posted it on the European Suzuki website (European books are different from the books in the USA). Has your teacher taken Suzuki training for Book 4? It seems odd that your teacher isn't insisting on teaching sautille when it is introduced, since so much of Suzuki is structured to introduce techniques that are then built upon in pieces that follow.
Here is often how I start teaching Sautille to my students:
Yeah, in your situation I would probably add sautille to the "things to try every day" list while continuing to progress through the songs. By this, I mean experiment with open-string sautille for just a few minute every day as part of warmups or as a random diversion in the middle of practice. This will allow it to develop at its own pace, organically, while not getting in the way of the student progressing in other ways. Much like how vibrato keeps developing independently of everything else, and we wouldn't stop our other studies to only do vibrato. Or how up-bow staccato isn't learned in one week, but over many months or years.
We had a break through 2 days ago meaning a little bit of sautille :) So it is possible to get the bow bouncing but it really is quite difficult and it will probably get ages to get real sautille on the actual piece but anyway it is possible.
I don't see that one should learn sautille before going through an entire progression of learning spicatto really well. One must learn how the fingers flex together on the bow, especially the thumb and pinkie, and do it slow motion.
Scott's point is pretty relevant and I should add to my earlier points that if I want students to learn sautille, I usually have them start far before they get to anything in Suzuki that uses it.
Bohm Perpetual Motion was not moved from Suzuki book 5 to 4 but was added to the revised edition of book 4 (2008 vs. my previous edition 1978). By the way, Barbara Barber has it in Solos for Young Violinists book 3 (1997) and specifies suggested Suzuki level of book 6 and up.
The sautille stroke itself isn't necessarily the problem. It's knowing how to deal with string crossings and shifts while doing it. This is where the problems and frustrations occur, and why one needs a methodical approach.
Scott, spot on, she can now sort of sautille on one string and almost Sautille with some parts of Bohm, but Bohm has string crossings that are 2 notes apart so it is superhard. The right wrist tenses when doing fast stringcorssings in Bohm and since she plays quite fast now, it is impossible to play without the wrist movement so it sort of falls apart in those stringcrossingparts
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