Kreutzer

Edited: September 5, 2019, 2:28 AM · In the matter of studies and technique, if I decided I was only going to play Kreutzer and no-one else, what would be wrong with that? What would I be missing out on?

Replies (62)

September 5, 2019, 4:44 AM · LOL! Let me ask you a question in reply: What if I decided to eat tomatoes and only tomatoes - what would I be missing out on?
September 5, 2019, 6:23 AM · "What would I be missing out on?"

Life!

Edited: September 5, 2019, 6:43 AM · My experience with Kreutzer is that it's a pretty good overall workout. It's long on trills, arpeggiated passage work, and thirds. It doesn't have a lot of the small-shifting, finger-twisting drill that you're going to get with Schradieck and Dont. And K2 notwithstanding, it's also not really a "bowing book" although you can certainly improve every part of your playing, including bowing and tone production, with every study.

But if Kreutzer is at the right level for you, then working diligently through the whole of it will probably be of great overall benefit.

And by the way, when heirloom tomatoes are in peak season, we do eat quite a few of them. Unfortunately that season is coming to an end here in southwestern Virginia.

September 5, 2019, 7:27 AM · You would miss out on Rode, whose studies are much more musical.
September 5, 2019, 8:10 AM · Heifetz apparently used Kreutzer as the foundation of his daily practice and for teaching. I remember that at the conclusion of one of his famed TV workshops in the '60s he told one of his best pupils in the workshop (and at that level they were all pretty dam' good!) to go home and work on Kreutzer 4.
September 5, 2019, 8:18 AM · I think that you would go insane when you get to the middle of the book and it is all trill exercises! Seriously, though, Kreutzer is great but there is so much more amazing music out there!
September 5, 2019, 9:39 AM · I don't know why I think Jack Benny every time Kreutzer is brought up :)

But really, I'd rather use Whistler's prep for Kreutzer (both volumes). A lot of variety from others.

September 5, 2019, 11:10 AM · I think Rode asks much more from you from a sound and phrasing standpoint, and I think it applies to repertoire a lot better, but Kreutzer is definitely very useful and should be studied thoroughly. It wouldn't hurt me to go back and work on Kreutzer very carefully.
September 5, 2019, 2:23 PM · You would miss playing lots of beautiful music. Kreutzer would undoubtedly agree with that.
September 5, 2019, 10:40 PM · Like a lot of study books: starts off well then runs out of ideas and has a lot of filler.
Edited: September 6, 2019, 1:19 AM · I went on for about 6 months working on Kreutzer and scales only. That was about as long as I could do it and i decided to start working on Mozart concertos
Edited: September 6, 2019, 2:42 AM · Normally I dislike people who start a debate and then disappear, but I'm pleased with the results of doing precisely that here. I see some replies that I like. Also I see people talking of music when I specifically talked of technique. If I want music, I have Corelli or Bach or Bartok or Beethoven to attempt. If I tried all of the 195,000 studies that have ever been written, I'd die of old age before I had a chance to play any music.
September 6, 2019, 8:29 AM · Kreutzer is the "bible" of intermediate technique. For advanced technique, you need other books.
September 6, 2019, 8:42 AM · Gordon, just curious, with a year of playing violin accomplished, what are you expecting from Kruetzer?
Edited: September 6, 2019, 10:05 AM · @Timothy, I'm expecting a compendium of technique sufficient to last me the rest of my life.
Lydia's "intermediate" and "advanced" are susceptible of various definitions, so I'm not going to address that caveat. Nor am I overly ambitious. I just want to make the final outlay and get stuck in. Consider it a retirement plan, if you like.
I have another compendium which contains Kreutzer 5, 2, 17, 24 in that order. After I have finished it, continuing with Kreutzer is my most likely course.
September 6, 2019, 10:34 AM · Anyone who can play all 42 Kreutzers up to tempo and in tune and with decent tone is probably a pretty good violinist. I'm sensing that Gordon feels learning all 42 Kreutzers will be a significant challenge. If so, then his "retirement plan" sounds pretty good to me.

The only thing I'd add is that if you asked me what *single* exercise did the most for my violin-playing over the last couple of years, my answer would be "scales in thirds."

September 6, 2019, 10:52 AM · I doubt that Kreutzer, as a teacher, would restrict his teaching to his own book. Unlike other Etude books, There is a wide range of difficulty levels in the book, and they are not in order of difficulty. Some students, and their teachers, will start the book too soon, when they can do #s 2-3.
September 6, 2019, 4:38 PM · I guess I may as well confess that I never practiced any Kreutzer. My second teacher started me on Mazas. My third teacher did no etudes with me at all, we studied repertoire and instead of etudes he wanted me to work on Dalmasso's "Esercizi giornalieri". (It seems those are no longer available.) They are like a Sevcik concentrate, starting with simple finger exercises, then going on to special exercises for the fourth finger and eventually to scales in some variations. I still find them useful. My teacher told me they were just right for amateurs who don't have hours to work on Sevcik or Flesch.

My fourth teacher took me back to Mazas and that was it.

When I read in several books that Kreutzer was something special and how well the etudes were written I bought the book and planned to work on them by myself. Then I found that--contrary to what the literature says--the etudes were completely uninspired and very boring (musically that is). I abandoned my plan and so it came that to this day I have never worked on Kreutzer. People generally find me an acceptable player nonetheless (inspired by this web site I have occasionally looked up one of the etudes and I must say that I stick with my judgement of their quality from decades ago).

September 6, 2019, 5:25 PM · Albrecht, I'm not falling for it. hahaha ... because one time in one of these "studies" threads I concocted something like "38 Studjiken by Iron Constantan" or something and people went and tried to find it on IMSLP.

The main reason I endorsed Gordon's plan is because he seems to have his heels dug in fairly deep. And you can moderate the difficulty of the harder ones by skipping some double stops or playing them slower, even if you have to take twice or four times as many bows per phrase.

September 6, 2019, 6:02 PM · I try to go through 3-4 Kreutzer a month. Dont etudes are also very good to do.
September 6, 2019, 7:00 PM · There is enough musical material in Rode to provide a few encore pieces if required. I doubt you could say that of Kreutzer.

Incidentally, my teacher said that Kreutzer 1 was not the right place for me to start, so it was 2, 3, 4, 5 and onwards for a while, followed by repertoire, and then a return to a few etudes in Rode.

Edited: September 7, 2019, 1:17 AM · "heels dug in deep". Maybe. I'm rebelling against an ethos I detect.
A bit like Albrecht, my piano teacher never had me play more than three Czerny studies (and one by one other composer). But some violinists glibly rattle off the names of a dozen composers of etudes, implying they have studied those composers' entire oeuvre, and I wonder if it's bluster, or what percentage of that effort was superfluous. On the piano, if you had played all of Czerny, you'd have done very well, so I wondered if it wasn't really true that you could say the same of some such violin composer, e.g. Kreutzer. Maybe there's someone better. (Chopin and others wrote "etudes", although I don't know if this was formally or just another name for a piece of difficult music) Maybe Paganini is better: I'll think about that in 5 years' time, if the arthritis doesn't get me first.
Edited: September 7, 2019, 7:34 AM · Gordon, I totally agree with you about the ethos. When people say they've "done" Mazas, Kreutzer, Rode, Sitt, Alard, Dont (three opuses), Vole Fart, Kayser, Schradieck, Sevcik (467 opuses) and so on, not to mention Paganini and Ernst, you really wonder how much time they could have spent on each study.

But the truth is that the different sets of studies do tend to emphasize different things. So most of us amateurs have generally been through a few of the early books entirely ("a study a week" is common when one is young, with a short attention span and a superior ability to learn), and after that a few from each of the other books up to whatever "level" we happen to occupy. Paganini is beyond me, probably permanently, so far I have "done" two from Rode and one from Dont Op. 35, but not up to tempo, I'm afraid. Not yet anyway.

Edited: September 7, 2019, 10:24 AM · “But some violinists glibly rattle off the names of a dozen composers of etudes, implying they have studied those composers' entire oeuvre, and I wonder if it's bluster, or what percentage of that effort was superfluous.”

Totally agreed. The only etudes book I did back to back is Kayser. I have been on Kreutzer for about 6 years (with a break of 25 years in middle), I am still hopelessly struggling with the last third of Kreutzer.

September 7, 2019, 5:43 PM · …...When people say they've "done" Mazas, Kreutzer, Rode, Sitt, Alard, Dont (three opuses), Vole Fart, Kayser, Schradieck, Sevcik (467 opuses) and so on, not to mention Paganini and Ernst, you really wonder how much time they could have spent on each study...…….

I should include..... Fiorillo, Dancla opus 73 & 74, Casorti Bogentechnik, Rovelli and Sivori. They all have individual composing styles. Of course there isn't enough time to study them entirely, but choose the appropriate etudes that enhance technique and satisfy musical taste. Why would you deny yourself a taste of their offerings...?

September 7, 2019, 11:55 PM · Many teachers assign two or three etudes a week, so for a significant percentage of my childhood I was spending half my practice time on etudes and exercises. We did not do every single etude, but we did most of Kreutzer. (I had an effortless fast trill, for instance, so I think we glossed through exactly one Kreutzer trill etude and skipped all the other trill-oriented exercises. But I still did the 4th-finger trill exercise in Dont op. 35.)

Generally 2 to 4 weeks to master an etude, with a handful of exceptions.

September 8, 2019, 4:12 AM · In my opinion etudes should be like doctor's prescriptions, given for a certain problem and not prescribed for nonexistent problems. If one were to do all of Sevcik's exercises, theoretically you would be ready to tackle performing repertoire at the age of 102.
Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:24 AM · For Gordon Shumway & Trevor Jennings ~. (28)

Gordon, your Subject on Kreutzer is deeply appreciated for a number of reasons! As a veteran artist teacher & sometimes accepting 'amateur' students who very much love learning all possible skills to enable studying violin concerti & violin/piano chamber music plus piano trio combinations & as solid members of a string quartet, Kreutzer will definitely guide, teach you when being administered by a seasoned teacher, most everything you appear to want to and have need of knowing!

Noticing Trevor Jennings comment about my violin mentor, Jascha Heifetz, assigning the Kreutzer Etudes to the seven of us - Mr. Heifetz's 1st original 7 artist pupils in his Violin Master Classes at USC's Heifetz, Piatigorsky & William Primrose especially created Institute for Special Music Studies, please know our JH Violin Master Class films (on UTube since 2011) were Only filmed after NY Producer, Nathan Kroll's, insistent requests to Heifetz to allow him to bring his entire film crew from NYC to Los Angeles, to film a series of 'normal lessons in class' not 'workshop's', as someone on here mentioned, but what all 7 of us had to first play being scale/s + all other
configurations of a particular scale Mr. Heifetz requested, then if truly well played, JH would then ask which Kreutzer Etude one had for the day which was one of Three full 6 hours non stop teaching 3 Days pr week and every semester! Jascha Heifetz had indisputable confidence in Kreutzer's Etudes (all 42 of them) as solid builders of firm violin technique. And, with all due respect, to assume Heifetz's early violin 'training' was attained only from Rudolph Kreutzer Etudes is inaccurate! Heifetz had God given prodigious technique & uncanny gifts for the violin which his violinist father, Ruvin Heifetz, immediately-knowingly recognized. Poppa Ruvin supervised his more than a prodigy son's earliest training, but Mr. Heifetz never spoke of all he studied excepting Scales & more scales + every conceivable left hand configuration of violinistic double stops we could imagine & not even imagine! Kreutzer was & remains a 'Bible' of full violin technique & bowing if one, again, has a very accomplished mentor guiding the way (re - given bowing's & in the 1st Etude to learn How to sustain the bow for a long time ~ ^example - Mr. Milstein & I would sometimes play a Game to see just how long either of us could sustain the Bow the longest bit of time minus any bumps) which was in a sneaky way, a 'take' from Kreutzer by Milstein, without saying so! Please don't think Nathan Milstein used Kreutzer Etudes because he did not for as he often said w/vinegar in his voice, 'I'm a Violinist, not a Professor!' My later private work with Mr. Milstein was very advanced. However, Heifetz's mentoring was super + advanced & possibly his reason for such insistence we, his first original 7 pupils, were highly disciplined in techniques of practising Before being ^JH invited to then play a movement of Unaccompanied Bach or a Violin/Piano Sonata, concert violin piece (Chausson's Poeme, Claire Hodgkins' JH film), & so forth. I truly do believe Mr. Heifetz wanted to be a great teacher & with his deep respect for Leopold Auer, possibly followed Auer's example in his St. Petersburg famed Class including Toscha Seidel, Elman, Milstein, Kubelik, Zimbalist, Sascha Lasserson & very young Heifetz, as a boy of 9 or 10. Mr. Heifetz was 100% earnest in his quest to advance each of us 'pretty dam' good' artist pupil's to maximum levels of concert artistry ...

In sharing a tiny bit here, please do not think Kreutzer is only for younger artists, or for young teenage pupils or for older students of the violin! The
Kreutzer Etudes have masses of 'somethings' for Everybody!!! For Gordon
Shumway's purposes & goals, Kreutzer seems The Way to Go!!! If, at some
point, Gordon, you become proficient enough surprising yourself (& I wish this for you) try Dont because it is full of beauty in its 'technical forms' yet at
the same time, highly satisfying & increases one's options in both left hand & bowing possibility techniques! JH also invited us to practise Dont, which he obviously felt was a healthy technical tool to prepare for violin works as
demanding as Concerti of Korngold, Walton, Castelnuevo -Tedesco, Lalo,
Ravel, Tchaikovsky, Khachaturian, & of course All Bach Sonatas & Partitas.

One doesn't have to be a Concert Career Artist to study Dont or Paganini, & again, under a veteran seasoned violinist teacher, who tailor makes the
teaching & studies to suit each individual pupil's specific needs ~ Kreutzer
is of enormous life benefit to all or to those who choose to stick with it for their lifetime violin studies companion!!

The subject of playing & the ever intriguing discussion of Teaching How to Play the Violin or any of our string cousin's, is universally acknowledged &
fueled by The Greatest Masters of The Violin, because every violinist no matter what age, is healthily curious about How Heifetz, Milstein, Kreisler,
D. Oistrakh, Stern, Ricci, Kogan, Grumiaux, Szeryng, Mutter & I.P., + P. Z.,
& H. H., play as they do!? And don't forget Elmar Oliveira, IMO, the closest
great violinist of my generation to Nathan Milstein!!

At the least, all here + all who participate by reading or writing in or both,
are doing something very positive to improve & in turn, improve others ~

Happy Sunday Greetings & to observe a Great Tennis Arm Serve, do watch today's US Open Men's Tennis Final, keeping your eyes glued on Rafael Nadal's 'Bow-Serve Arm'!!!!! A huge Fan, I'm really hoping Nadal can play with his Friday nite 'Last Quarter of the semi-final match' élan & bravura to Win The US Men's Open Tennis Championship, Today! Memo: Nadal Won!

Elisabeth Matesky * ^

*View ESPN for The Final Previews at 3:00 EDT; Match Final @4:00 EDT ~

^Trevor Jennings! To whom in our JH Violin Master Class films did JH tell to
practise Kreutzer No. 4?!! I've forgotten ~ Varoujan Kodjian, Robert Witte,
Claire Hodgkins, Carol Sindell, Adam Han Gorski, or Erick Friedman? It
'Weren't' Me!!!! Best to you ~ Elisabeth Matesky (Sept. 8, 2019)

^for Bruce Berg request! Sunday, Septemer 8, 2019

September 8, 2019, 10:33 AM · I would ask that Ms. Matesky elaborate further on the reasons that Mr. Heifetz valued the Kreutzer studies as invaluable for the development of violinistic skills and expression. We might be able to get a clearer idea if you can give some examples of comments he gave after a student's performance of one or more of the etudes and the benefits to be derived from their study. Is it possibly that each etude focuses on a specific area of violin technique? I would also be interested to know if Mr. H assigned specific etudes to specific students.

We are fortunate to have Ms. Matesky contributing to this forum so as to give us a glimpse into his teaching style. Bruce Berg

Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:25 AM · Dear Bruce Berg ~. (30)

As it's close to the US Open Men's Tennis Championship Final, I'll try to come back on soon, to try answering a specific question, but suggest you read my insert re the Game Mr. Milstein & I played to see who of the Two of us could sustain the full Bow for the longer time without any bumps, which as I wrote, seemed Milstein's sneaky way of his 'take' on Kreutzer No. 1 which starts on A on the D String Whole Note!!!! This seems a relevant example re utter control of the Bow which both Heifetz & Nathan Milstein possessed and were Great Masters of!!!! (Great Question/Big Request!)

Catching Brunch then Rafa Nadal vs Mednevdev, I remain

Yours musically from Chicago!!

Elisabeth Matesky *

*https://www.violinist.com/directory/bio.cfm?member=Milstein

September 8, 2019, 6:02 PM · What I'd like to suggest as an alternative, occasional or otherwise, to Kreutzer etc is to work on some of Bartok's 42 Violin Duos with your teacher (if they agree). OK, so you're not going to get quite the technical workouts provided by the formal etudes, but you'll be playing real music which, being Bartok and Hungarian, is exciting in many ways and makes its own demands on your playing. My teacher introduced me to the Bartok "42" alongside Suzuki 5 and 6.
September 8, 2019, 7:24 PM · I just want to say how much I am enjoying Ms. Matesky's posts here.
September 8, 2019, 8:33 PM · Those Bartok duos are very sight reading material.
September 8, 2019, 8:37 PM · I second what Mary Ellen said.

Thank you, Ms. Elisabeth Matesky for connecting us to the giants of the “golden age”.

Edited: September 9, 2019, 10:54 AM · I have heard that JH occasionally used a Kreutzer etude as an encore. I heard he was fond of No. 8 (I think that is the number) which is in E Major and in an arpeggio style. Can Elizabeth confirm that?

As for a "golden age" I think we are in one right now -- a golden age of violin-playing and violin-making. There are so many brilliant violinists to listen to, each with individuality and of course technical brilliance. Of course Heifetz, Milstein, and company were truly great violinists. But they also had the benefit of being in their performing prime during the rapid evolution of recorded music. Was Heifetz better than Paganini? Was Oistrakh better than Sarasate? Was Milstein better than Joachim? How will we ever know? Joachim made four recordings, none of them were of violin concertos, and all of them were made with fledgling equipment. Jacques Thibaud was a great violinist -- but people don't stream his recordings on Spotify. We would only be doing so to educate ourselves -- the quality of the recordings is generally unbearable. But he has an extensive discography -- including many works played with pianist Alfred Cortot (a favorite of my dad's) who also nobody listens to any more because we're so spoiled by modern recording technology that we simply can't tolerate the inferior fidelity of recordings made before, say, 1950.

Edited: September 10, 2019, 12:22 PM · My Ricordi viola edition (onto which I have grafted Flesch's fingerings) puts the No 1 as No 22, so the two "son filé" studies are together.
Thus we find coherent groups: bowing & fingering dexterity, trills, sustained tone, octaves, advanced dexterity, and double stops.

Musically they may be boring but they all have a proper tonal structure, (which I do do find in Kayser, Rode or Gaviniès, but not in Wolfhart nor Dont) so it is possible give them musical shape or direction.

It is interesting to compare Flesch's fingerings with Galamian's: we can guess that Flesch had the smaller hands, and I can use his fingerings on the viola...

September 9, 2019, 10:40 AM · I always found it interesting that teachers want studies to be played with "feeling" but not vibrato.
Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:26 AM · Re: "Teachers Want Studies to be played w/'feeling' but not vibrato"?? (38)

That idea is anti - Music!!! It's ridiculous because to 'feel' the Allegro's in Bach's Unaccompanied Sonatas & Partitas, or Paganini Caprices & Dont requires vibrating on every passage w/vibrato to follow the singing melody contained within given violinistic passages!!! Knowing the beauty in the
'Lace work' is paramount to 'feeling' the composer's "messages" requiring SLOW LOVING PRACTISE to VIBRATE ON EACH NOTE which burns the Melody/s in one's memory & allows the inner sound track to decipher the more subtle disguised melodic Harmony in an Allegro Mov't of Solo Bach & any 'Lace work' in a solo part or ensemble, etc.! When one practices at tempo rapid passages SLOWLY, Time allows what seems overwhelming to make musical sense & in Masterworks, we all wish to make feeling sense of Great Repertoire!!! I have gone through violin passages on the Piano for
Clarity, harmonically, which reveals melodic underneath harmony, greatly
helping memory of whatever I'm playing or practising! Milstein had 'Back Up' systems to call upon if nerves affected memory under concert stress!

On to Kreutzer #8 as a Heifetz favourite - having an Arpeggio obstacle course in E Major (yet in Heifetz's hands it must have sounded glorious), I can't confirm Mr. Heifetz performed Kreutzer Etude #8 as an Encore, but there might come a time that it might lend itself to a Violin Recital Encore? Quite sure, Mr. Heifetz may have performed the Paganini 'Perpetuo Mobile' which would've knocked the audience's socks off, which seems logical as there was some sort of piano accompaniment perhaps made by JH for this rapid piece! In fact, memory brings to mind a recently viewed/listened to Yehudi Menuhin performance with his London pianist of the 'Perpetuo Mobile' on YouTube ~

Please realize there may be and are many many Violinists out there, but the unique & immediately recognizable sound/s of Heifetz, Milstein, Kreisler & Oistrakh, are elements of artistic Genius ~ 'Fingerprints' of each of these 4 giant personalities within the uniquely Individual Sound each produced, & no matter if on an older recording in Mono then Stereo! The strength quality of Heifetz's soaring sound w/innuendo plus The Heifetz Sound IS Heifetz!!! I have yet to hear any young violinists w/this strength of Personality Sound, excepting Anne - Sophie Mutter, who has a unique vibrato'd Sound all her own which, musically, I admire ...

When our selected online LinkedIn Discussion Group of Pro's for 4 + Years duration, titled, 'The 10 Top Greatest Violinists of All Time, (I - V)' began, we agreed Sarasate, Paganini, Vieuxtemps, Joachim + others of Great repute, without recordings, would Not be listed/compared as we could not actually hear their playing of the violin, which would have been quite naive to prove that Sarasate played better than Oistrakh, Kreisler, Milstein or JH & etc. ~

Our online-in-great-depth discussion with exhaustive exploration brought us all into agreement that we would sign a Writ of Complicity stating (if - when published) we'd all taken the above decision due to no available recordings, or wax disc's & otherwise reproduction's of Paganini, Wieniawski, Joachim, or Sarasate (without authentic relevant scholarly experts in London, Oxford & Vienna, giving us verification that indeed it was/is Paganini or Sarasate, etc.) that our own thought-to-be great violinists lacking any recorded work/s would not be considered in assessing 'The 10 Top Greatest Violinists of All Time, (I-V)', created by Music Prof, N. Hulme of Thames Valley University/ London, for publication by unanimous consent ~

Of course, during the expansive 4 + Years, we had intriguing opportunities to listen to & even view Great Violinists, some of whom were exceptional yet had little recorded output, and we could spend many weeks discussing the virtues & lack thereof re given artists that turned into a Violin Forum or shall we say, an Oxford Tutorial much of the time, & in doing so, we learned much more about wonderful artists & their lives which sometimes explained the Why of not obtaining a solo concert career the artist in question's Talent along w/exceptional accomplishment warranted, sadly gone less noticed by public & scholars, to a point X# of precious violinists' actual extinction to the musical public at large occurred ~ Being a huge subject & due to previous professional commitments today, I must take my leave yet wish to say, I'm most positively moved and impressed by truly high interest + great sincerity of all fellow musical contributors here!!!! Thank you to everyone ...

For now, I bid you all adieu ~

Musically yours in good willed faith!

Elisabeth Matesky

September 9, 2019, 3:00 PM · I love the Thibaud/Cortot recordings. Recent remasters have cleaned up some of the background noise. They're perfectly listenable even on 78s, in my opinion.

Teachers often ask for etudes to be learned without vibrato in order to ensure that intonation issues are not masked. Once you know an etude, vibrato in appropriate places is generally fine.

Edited: September 9, 2019, 8:07 PM · Lydia, I agree with you. But we're educated to listen beyond the surface noise of the shellac record. Cortot was a genius of subtlety.

Elizabeth your erudition is warmly appreciated here. I feel the same way about ASM. Her vibrato represents an entire musical dimension that many of her violinistic forebears (for example Arthur Grumiaux) left largely untapped.

Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:27 AM · (41)
Aware of learning Etudes without vibrato, there are various calculated oscillations (speeds) of vibrato which many newer-to-the-violin pupil's can not yet discern nor control with exceptions of a brilliantly talented pupil who has the natural gift of near perfect pitch & altho' rare, perfect, perfect pitch. As an aside: one day in our Heifetz Violin Master Class, Mr. Heifetz asked, 'Who has perfect pitch?' All seven of us raised our hands! Mr. Heifetz, who upon seeing this, proceeded to conduct us in his own Perfect Pitch Test! Starting easily w/ simple single file scales, each pupil was asked to identify
all notes in the scale but not in sequential order! And, none were allowed to see the Piano Heifetz was sitting at! This proved extremely telling, and advancing further, Mr. Heifetz began asking each pupil to identify double stops without seeing the ivories. This section of the JH Perfect Pitch Test caught at least 3 or 4 class-mates by surprise, giving hesitant answers ... The Test continued to advance through every conceivable double stopped configuration and after 6 of my class mates had endured the JH Perfect Pitch Test, Mr. Heifetz called my name to check my hearing as a physician!
I was able to ease through everything until Mr. Heifetz posed his Question of Asking someone to then play a Bbb (B double flat) scale on the violin & starting with a correct fingering. One by one class-mate missed the scale & couldn't figure out how to finger a Bbb flat scale, including Erick Friedman!
Truly on the spot, I'd had time to think it through & started on the G String with my left hand 2nd finger in the half position, continuing on up three full octaves with a most foreign fingering to me! On returning down, I managed to mirror my fingering's on the way Up & tried duplicating all back down to
the G String, landing on the first note of the Bbb flat scale w/my 2nd violin finger! Afraid of what might be said by Mr. Heifetz, I turned away slightly to avoid hearing I didn't have perfect pitch from Jascha Heifetz ~ With tension in the studio class room, Mr. Heifetz arose from the Piano, announcing his
observations of pitch awareness in each of the 7 of us ... Being last, I had to wait. After a JH assessment, most class-mates had to make revisions in individual perceptions of perfect pitch ... He, Heifetz, came to my chair and told our Master Class , "I've concluded Liz has perfect pitch"!!! So relieved I
wouldn't have to feel like a liar in Mr. Heifetz's view, I suddenly smiled most happily!! The question of how I'd figured out what a Bbb flat scale actually was & could hear it, starting on the G String lowest A with my 2nd finger, to play as a B flat scale, but in actuality I'd heard/played an a minor scale with a Bb flat fingering, evidently convinced Jascha Heifetz, I had told the truth when answering Yes to Mr. Heifetz's Question regarding Who had Perfect Pitch?!! By then it was nearing 5:30 PM, & Thursday's class had gone far overtime since 11:00 AM, with Mr. Heifetz having to deal with Los Angeles Rush Hour traffic at the worst part of the day, leaving USC to Beverly Hills, for an pre-planned evening -Yikes! was my reaction & my very considerate & adoring Mr. Heifetz class-mate, offered to drive Heifetz home in his JH 4 door glorious English Bentley!!!! We all parted warmly & once back home, I called my parents to thank them for being so fastidious with my musical & violinistic training plus expressing my gratitude to them both for being my parents!!! Never having written about this, it's hitting me hard that having uniquely gifted teacher parents was a Providential Gift to urge this violinist contributor on the path to concert artist-dom ~

Re Lydia's comments on the need to delete vibrato when learning a scale or Etude, to fine tune truthful intonation (which is imperative for developing 'relative pitch' or perfecting innate perfect Pitch), allow me to add that this is a common practise to delete vibrato in order to 'hear' the truth of intonation & of course, it is very necessary in the early stage and sequential stages in addressing pure intonation ~

It's become apparent that the subject of addressing 'true to truth intonation' is imperative on a consistent basis & well in advance of student learning of violin yet not being encouraged to attempt a 'walk through' of simple single file beginning scales or a Kreutzer Etude, at least from the first time violin
acquaintance-hood continuing all the way through to whatever violinist goal each pupil has amid the greater challenges to be prepared to teach pupil's accordingly to achieve his/her goals & then Expect - prepare as a teacher for the Next Goal & to try facilitating it as best one can which in the closing
Chapters of Teacher to Pupil relationship's have reached all both can offer yet teach-help a pupil to go on to a 'new level' of study with a 'right teacher' to take the pupil further whilst honouring the progress you,Teacher Aunt or Uncle, has passed on to ensure solid progress going forward ~

The dual responsibilities to express each basic awareness whilst adding to a pupil's Skills, i.e., a scale in tandem with a Kreutzer Etude, is an alarming task to take on, yet professionally ready teachers usually do this without so much as a hiccup! Make sure to freshen up one's teaching re attitude, plus positiveness fueling selfless ambition channeled into one's best teaching yet, and check in with colleagues one admires to "be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind"- for the future comes one day at a time & pupil's do Grow, then seek more knowledge with heightened technical-musical skills, leaving the Nest for a perceived better one ... All must aspire to improve in order to continue uplifting those who come to us for what they expect is the next level ~ Be prepared plus Before you need to & teaching will never ever become "Old" ~

Apologies for such a lengthy Reply, but practising demands my focus now!!

Warm greetings to all dedicated violinists & violin aficionados here ~

Elisabeth Matesky / US

Edited: September 10, 2019, 2:10 AM · Many thanks to Elizabeth, Bruce (re the prescriptivity, if you'll forgive me for making up such a word) and others.
I know I'm a beginner jumping the gun, I don't need people to point it out.
Mainly I'm working on legato string-pivoting and tone-production in third position and détaché at the moment, so the obvious Kreutzer détaché material, and Whistler on third position, and scales and arpeggios are where my main efforts are being expended, plus some Corelli for musical interest.
September 10, 2019, 6:28 AM · Elizabeth, you atually forgot to answer prof.Berg's direct question: did Heifetz assign specific Kreutzer etudes to the students, and if so, how did he go about that? Same question about the pieces themselves, did he assign them (which concertos, etc) or did you choose these themselves and he just taught you to play them better? To have such a living memory here among us on this forum is indeed precious. Love from Belgium (although this week I am actually in New York.)
Edited: September 10, 2019, 11:14 AM · Elisabeth, re the B double flat (Bbb) scale that Heifetz used as a test - a good one! The point of course is that Bbb is slightly flatter than A (435Hz as against 440) and, if played in tune, the Bbb scale has no resonances with any of the open strings. So woe betide you if you play an open string or any note that resonates with them! I suspect that Heifetz, in those Bbb scales tests, was listening for those resonances, and their presence would have been a clear indication that the scale was not being played in tune.

There is a British composer, John Rutter, who is well known for his choral church music, often accompanied by a small orchestra. I have noticed, when playing his music, his fondness for keys with large numbers of flats. I wonder if his objective is to avoid too much resonance of the singers' voices with the orchestral stringed instruments.

I second Jean's "living memory" comment. In Britain "living memories" are "national treasures".

Edited: September 10, 2019, 12:24 PM · Er, Trevor, whether Bbb is lower than A depends on the path we use to derive it: Pythagorean, Meantone etc, (both of which are of interest to string players).
Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:29 AM · Re: Bbb flat Scale =435Hz!! (46)

Dear Trevor Jennings ~

When I finished playing the Bbb (double flat) in three octaves scale, Heifetz congratulated me as having 'played it perfectly in tune' before giving any of us his Final Assessment of all claiming to have 'Perfect Pitch' ~ As written about above, the fingerings I had to improvise to do this worked! I've no recall of any note being the least off but deeply centered. All I know is that Milstein felt my pitch was exact & we used to discuss minutely subtle colour differences between (for example) a Db & C#, which imply hugely different pitch which is a 'road sign' indication from composer's of emotional flavored
inflection re mood and to enhance 'fragrance' of the note/s + ambience & atmosphere they give off ~ Intonation is a finite specialized Art in which the huge differences in the Sound & music-speak are in all music one plays but certainly in very well known works for the violin! Chausson's Poeme is a prime example of needing deeply sensitized intonation to urge an audience to step into the atmosphere of his period of French composition & in turn to Ernest Chausson's innermost feelings & state of mind when composing his uniquely almost 'In Memoriam' larger scale Tone Poem for Solo Violin with
Orchestra ... There are some "things" which cannot be taught, and I'll risk saying, having emotional acquaintance & insight of life's greatest Joys & its most bitter sorrows w/all in between deposited into one's Musical DNA at birth or prior to, which those who "Trust in the Lord with all Thine Heart & lean not unto Thine own understanding" possess in emotional-spiritual gifts to glorify any & all music composition within unique musical style-period's ~ And which when speaking about Chausson, (for myself), I think of French Rococo & specific sections of the 'Poeme' where I visualize Van Gogh's "The Church at Arles" with its near black dark-midnight blue late night sky surrounding The Church and All Above . . .

For myself, I'm 'Good' with Jascha Heifetz's proclamation in a '60's Spring, saying "Liz has perfect pitch!" ~

September 10, 2019, 5:48 PM · Adrian, on whichever basis you do the calculations (except for pianos!) I think you'll find that Bbb is not the same as A, and hence notes in the key of Bbb cannot resonate with any of the open strings, assuming of course that the strings are tuned in perfect 5ths, as Heifetz would have expected of his pupils.

Incidentally, the composer Erik Satie sometimes liked to have fun with pianists by dressing up some perfectly innocent piano piece with all manner of extraordinary and baffling enharmonic changes.

Many years ago, when I was a cellist for a while in Bristol University's orchestra we were rehearsing what I think was one of Schumann's symphonies. In the middle of one passage the conductor Prof Stanton (that dates me!) stopped the orchestra and congratulated the cello section on making a clear distinction between the enharmonics D# and Eb played a few notes apart on the C-string. I think this came so naturally out of the harmonic changes in that passage that none of us needed to think about it and make the distinction deliberately. Now had it been a piano concerto . . . !

September 11, 2019, 3:39 AM · Trevor, I should have said "lower or higher than A".
And I agree that we can spontaneously play enharmonic changes..
Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:31 AM · On September 11, 2019 ~ Eighteen Years after September 11, 2001 ...(49)

Dear Violinist Friends ~

Wherever you may be, please know all of my musical colleagues including

all violin luthier's and Violin House's in Chicago, will Never Forget the most

Traumatic Day on American Soil, Tuesday Morning, September Eleventh,

in The Year, Two Thousand and One when our Nation with many

other people of great Nation's working in or visiting New York City,

and Washington, D.C., were tragically Lost in the Terrorist Attacks

which shocked the Entire World and People's ... My closeest British

Friend, Lady W. & Lord W., scheduled to fly back to London, were

grounded in New York City, horrified in a Manhattan Hotel, learning

their Friend, one of the Berenson Daughters of London, had perished

on one of two American Airlines Planes which crashed into one of The

Two Twin Towers ~ Lost to All inThe Berenson Family and loving large

extended Family ... Flying to Israel as this is being set down, may God

Bless and Keep Safe my dear Annabelle & M., now & upon safe arrival

to commemorate The Centennial of the Birth of her recent Late Husband,

"Hubby", who gave so much to help many young musicians from Nation's

of The World with loving support to The Board of the Arthur Rubinstein

International Piano Competition, "In Memoriam" where Lord W. Rests for

Eternity . . .

I Love You, 'Hubby' & mourn your loss yet am Blessed to have witnessed

your marriage to my close Friend, Annabelle, in London, on a glorious '92

Bastille Day under the London Sunshine ~ Thank You for all you gave to

the World of Music & Musicians; for publishing the Books of Great World

Leaders, and for being such a loving husband to Annabelle & her American

Sister ~ "Lizzie"

September 11, 2019, 11:02 AM · Thank you E.M.
As for the key of Bbb; since I have never seen it so notated in real music, I am not going to concern myself with it. I would just finger such a thing as A, and would fail that test. The great debate about violin intonation is several centuries old. Leopold Mozart, in his technical book, said to play F# low and Gb high, which would be the opposite of Flesch's advice to play tight half steps. Like a lot of string players I have a version of pitch discernment that is not perfect. For an unknown-to-me violin piece on the radio I can tell what the notes and keys are, from the resonances of the instrument. But switch to piano; I have no clue.
September 11, 2019, 5:07 PM · I am with you, Joel.
Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:34 AM · (52)
To All after an inordinate amount of writing on the subject of Kreutzer, with a road 'detour' regarding the 'JH Perfect Pitch Test' with all it entailed, and honestly, never before having written about it nor had a discussion of such alla JH, accept my apologies to Bruce Berg, having asked for examples of Mr. Heifetz's specific assigning of given Etudes of Kreutzer & to whom they were given with reasons such and such an Etude was prescribed ... ?? Due to pre-planned professional commitments, my time has restricted me from answering Mr. Berg's in several parts request, but when I can actually find
some moments after practising the fiddle for upcoming playing/rehearsing dates, I will respond yet mention I did try by referring to a 'game' Nathan Milstein seemed to greatly enjoy which was to clock how long he & then myself, following Mr. M, could sustain one whole note without a tiny ripple in the Bow!!! As I did write, it seemed Mr. Milstein, in using this idea to see which one of us could sustain a full bow minus a tiny tiny ripple in the long bowing 'exercise' (just coined into a named exercise!) it's possible the longest bow idea could have been Milstein's 'Take' from Kreutzer No. 1, & sneakily, but never saying so! Most often NM sustained his Bow perfectly for nearly 110 seconds!!! After altering my Franco-Begium bowing to Mr. Milstein's truly uncanny approach to bowing, my sustaining of a full bow got close to 100 + seconds!

It is in this 'child-like' vein, that Nathan Milstein was an extraordinarily clever & psychologically savvy Mentor & on reflecting back, RX'd the clocked bow 'exercise' to smooth out my bowing in the Unaccompanied Bach Sonatas & Partitas slower movements as well as many haunting melodies to be found within great violin concerti, many of which he adored & actually shared his own several sets of bowing's for the same violin concerto plus fingerings to have on hand to switch to in public performance, in case of a nano second memory blank, stressing that different fingerings & bowing's could release temporary memory lapses because the music one played as a violin soloist had to be known well on the piano, harmonically (which I learned early on from my brilliant pianist - mother) ~ Again, I'm 'driving' off the main road of Bruce Berg's Question, but am adding other important (to me) memory of, amid remembrances of a small fraction of Milstein's private mentoring.

Heifetz had the seven of us to attend to which restricted some of what he might've gone more deeply in to with each of us. But let me state this fact ~ For the restrictions on Mr. Heifetz's time (& 3 days a week w/ each day of 6
full hours) JH was remarkable, displaying great organization of thought & knowing each of us with our weaknesses & strengths! Heifetz focused on Varoujan, or on Erick Friedman or Carol Sindell, & etc., suggesting various works he felt would well suit our musical temperaments & the longer the time we were all together, the more effective Heifetz's mentoring/teaching became!!!

It is now dinner time & I must go to the violin or it won't like me anymore, so for now, please view if interested our Jascha Heifetz Violin Master Class films, on YouTube, with each of the 7 of us in our JH Violin Master Class film. Not aware of all Links to my 6 other JH class-mates, to start off you can go to a Link I actually know!

*https://youtu.be/M54U-P-Vs9g (JH Violin Master Class - Khachaturian, JH-
7, Elisabeth Matesky) *Russian version. Library of Master Performers*

Once there & viewed, violinists can find all other 6 films, but I urge avoiding any w/Japanese subtitles, as people must have broken up our original JH films, for they are not in order of the original films Heifetz approved & gave to each of us which were sold by Shar & another company on VHS, then on DVD ~ Find the original film for whomever one wants to view: Robert Witte, Adam Han Gorski, Varoujan Kodjian, Claire Hodgkin's, Carol Sindell, Erick Friedman & mine which is included just above. Btw, Mr. Heifetz did request that I perform the Khachaturian 1st Mov't for my film, (1/2 hour, but 28:44 minutes) including an unknown scale or group of scales which turned out to be a tough one to play absolutely perfectly in tune with No prior warning!

In conclusion, Jascha Heifetz had special gifts of instincts for teaching and our Group worked well for Heifetz's actual Debut as 'Mr. Heifetz', the Great Mentor!!!!

Will be in touch with all as well as JQ ~

Remembering 'The Era of Heifetz' prior to September 11, 2001, when 9/11 didn't anymore mean 911 for the Fire Department or the Police, on this 9/11 Eighteenth Year Anniversary Day of Terrorist Attacks on The America that Jascha Heifetz & fellow Violinist's, Fritz Kreisler & Nathan Milstein glorified with such exhilarating Light ...

Musical condolences & Sympathy for 'Yesterday's' in the Twentieth Century

~ Elisabeth Matesky ~

https://www.violinist.com/directory/bio.cfm?member=Milstein

Edited: September 11, 2019, 7:00 PM · During the Heifetz Era, 9/11 might have been known better as the date that the Ford Motor Company introduced the legendary Pinto (1970), which debuted at under $2000 for a basic model. Too bad the poor little car became infamous for exploding when involved in rear-end collisions.

Or perhaps the murder of Chilean President Salvador Allende during a military coup led by General Augusto Pinochet (9/11/1973)...

September 11, 2019, 8:42 PM · And, 9/11 was the day that the last Turkish siege of Vienna was broken, with the help of the Polish cavalry. I have read that that was the reason Al-Queda chose that day.
September 11, 2019, 9:04 PM · Joel, yes I read that somewhere too.

The fact is, everything happens on a certain day. It was easy to "research" my post just by typing "September 11 in history" into Google.

I'm sorry this thread has been diverted to this, but I can't leave this branch of the discussion without mentioning that while the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York was a tragic calamity, if one casts one's gaze across the globe, there are events unfolding now that will claim 100 or 1000 times as many lives when they have run their course.

Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:36 AM · To Joel Q & Paul Deck ~. (56)

Thank you, both, for responding to many Replies I've posted here and an unusually large number of them due to unexpected responses to subjects relevant to learning Kreutzer while leading to Heifetz's strong endorsement of the Etudes of Kreutzer, plus a few "detour's" on my part, which elicited more discussion amid questions regarding Mr. Heifetz's teaching!

Of course, this very poignant day was as a stream running through the discussion which considering Mr. Heifetz's utter fidelity to America, wove its way into the Topic! I do realise Music and Art are signs of a Great Nation, which in some form, our late President, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, stated & or wrote of ~

Perhaps in odd ways, all responses on this Discussion created by Gordon Shumway, was our collective impromptu way (without any previous format) of remembering a great Nation on its worst day, eighteen years ago and in speaking about music and varying roads to learning violin; advancing on this fascinating instrument, & detoured saluting of a great American patriot, not deliberately, but possibly in honourable ways culminating in reflections upon looking back to "The Era of Jascha Heifetz" and on this Eighteenth Year 9/11 Anniversary when the Names of all Fallen are poignantly read by loved ones of those lost with heart wrenching sadness which Heifetz, of all artists, would have captured in a commemorative work ~ possibly by Bloch or a movement from Castelnuevo-Tedesco's Violin Concerto, offered by the
inimitable JH Sorrowed Sounds of the Ages . . .

No one need apologise for reflecting and on what may occur in the future involving untold thousands or, God forbid, possibly millions of people in a different time, yet many Lessons of 9/11 still remain under most American citizenry radar. To avoid an even greater travesty, it behooves our U.S. Gov't Intelligence Communities to address viable possibles rather than true dialogue so needed yet then pushed under the proverbial rug ...

Please excuse my lack of factual knowledge re the How's of preparation for a monstrous terrorist attack, but I found historical facts mentioned by you both most important & truly vital for all to know in the scheme of "Things"...

Very late again, I must determine to sleep well by posting in early evening!

Thank you Joel and Paul, for not leaving this Discussion on Kreutzer, et al, until the latter part of Wednesday evening, September 11th, 2019 ~

Warm musical greetings from West of New York City / East of Sacramento!

Elisabeth (Matesky)

Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:38 AM · For Jean Dubuisson ~. (57)

Dear Jean ...

Thank you for reminding me regarding Bruce Berg's several parts request question/inquiry!!! Seeing in 3D after a five day/night vigil here, unexpecting so many Replies on Gordon Shumway's Topic regarding Kreutzer, it seems to have turned into an international discussion with JH questions forum!

I finally managed to address a partial portion of Bruce Berg's requests, but reminded him of working with Nathan Milstein, privately, after Mr. Heifetz, and alluded to a "game" Milstein seemed to enjoy which is described in 2 extensive Entries of mine, earlier on and later Wednesday afternoon, on the
most poignant day, 9/11 ~

Quite fatigued from many professional responsibilities, although rather late here, I wanted to send you an 'Update' on progress in starting to answer some of Bruce's many parted Question!! Not an online artist teacher writer, this has stretched one's capabilities to describe much with less verbiage as
there isn't a single black and white answer! In the beginning preparations of writing a Book on my own professional musical concert career & studies with both the Twentieth Century's two Greatest Violin Masters, writing about violin performance & the teaching of it by one's early mentor parents, plus
Mister's Heifetz and Milstein, is a formidable challenge!! Frequently being asked & even coaxed into creating a Book, is a serious undertaking & one must keep close company with the violin!!!

I was interested in your Belgium roots with plans to be in New York on the 10th of September, 2019, just one day prior to The Worst Day Eighteenth Year Anniversary of the Terrorist Attacks on 9/11, Wednesday, Sept. 11th, 2019 ~ Are you playing in NYC or working there in some capacity?? I've a long - time friend who played extremely well, who now resides in Brussels, and is a prominent Lawyer in the diplomatic community, or so it seems!? She played Lalo's Symphonie Espagnol on a U.S. Tour of England & South Wales, much earlier than the life & profession she has & does so superbly well iin now! If you wish, respond back via my Studio address c/o my Artist Representative Email, & on Subject write 'Jean Dubuisson of Brussels for Elisabeth Matesky' which should reach me ~ (Of course, if easier you can mention what your musical life is like in Brussels. My father was honoured by The Eugene Ysaye Foundation when guest conducting in Brussels plus other European musical capital's & I have exchanged a few posts with the Grandson of Eugen Ysaye on Facebook, due to having performed Ysaye's
Solo Sonate for Violin no. 3 in D, 'Ballade' at The White House, at President Carter's invitation and selected the Ysaye to pay tribute by honouring the greatest Franco - Belgium Violinist, & discovered later of President Carter's visiting guest, French Premier Barre, being very happy hearing the Ysaye, as his father had been a personal friend of Eugen Ysaye!!! A small world, as my father-teacher studied with Eduoard Dethier, an "Apostle" of Ysaye, at Juilliard, & my mentor, Nathan Milstein, became an honoured friend of Ysaye & his violin student, a Royal personage, whom Milstein knew well for a number of years!!! Sometimes life is very kind! This occasion performing a Violin Recital at The State Dinner in The Carter White House, was rather fabulous, to say the least!!!

Must stop after tons of correspondence on 9/11, but let's hear from you if & when time allows!! My Violinist.com Biography is there, so you can access contact Info to keep in touch ~

Warmest musical greetings from America!

Elisabeth Matesky *

*https://www.violinist.com/directory/bio.cfm?member=Milstein

Edited: September 12, 2019, 5:37 AM · My take on the Bbb scale is that it's akin to a trick question in that all it is asking you to do is not use open strings. I suppose it's a little more complicated than that if your Bbb on the E string is required not to cause sympathetic vibration of the A string (horrified lol).

One of the reasons we are concerned with "enharmonics" in an orchestra is because on occasion the strings have to be in tune with the ET instruments, lol.

I'd be happy to get into a discussion of enharmonics if I knew there'd be an outcome that would satisfy me (because I'd understand it), but previous discussions have shown that that is unlikely (lol) - I've asked many times on many forums about Pythagoras and commas (the ancient Greeks were aware of and had more than one comma, and most of them thought Pythagorean music theory was crud. "His" theory was adopted by Christian musicians only because "his" theory of metempsychosis chimed with their theory of resurrection. I write "his" because we don't know anything about him, we only have evidence from his purported followers).

I'm having a long weekend away from the internet, so maybe I'll give some private thought to whether defining 3/2 as a perfect fifth in the first place isn't begging the question, or even begging for a circular argument (inadvertent pun - circle of fifths, geddit?). I'm told that, if you go from a C up six fifths and down six fourths, it's because you end up with B# that the result is sharper than C. I hope I guessed correctly which thread to put this in, and whether or not it was worth the effort!

(serious, but not too serious, hence the pathetic attempt to appease with too many lols)

Edited: September 12, 2019, 7:56 AM · Elizabeth, unfortunately, I am only an amateur on the violin, in NYC for professional reasons. But certainly like you mention, Belgium has a rich violin tradition and am still proud to be just a little bit part of it. My teacher of many years in my youth was the concertmaster of the Antwerp Opera. I am also a devoted follower of the Queen Elisabeth Competition, this competition is truly unique, from the very first day of the very first round of the competition the concert hall is fully packed. It is always nice to see unknowing participants of the competition coming from backstage on the stage for their first-round performance, see how pleasantly surprised they are to see the full audience, and give the best of themselves giving an unexpected concert for a full hall!
September 12, 2019, 10:31 AM · - To continue the off-topic item. Bbb as a key signature does not exist because it would have more than 7 flats. Bbb as a note does happen for things like the third of a Gb minor chord, the top note of a C diminished 7 chord ...Tuning-commas-Pythagorus, etc.; it's a math thing, it's real, already thoroughly covered in some acoustics text-books.
Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:41 AM · @Jean Dubuisson ~. (61)
It's lovely you are enjoying playing great music in a loving orchestra!!! An extraordinary story was conveyed to me by my second Iconic Violin Mentor, Nathan Milstein, which included a fascinating tale of how Milstein, a very young & then poor violinist made the acquaintance of the Foundress of The Queen Elisabeth of Belgium International Violin Competition!!! It will go in my Book, but a clue is Zoot !!!!!!! Keep in touch, Jean; some of my musical friends are lovers of the violin & play in 'casual' orchestras/string ensembles who know a lot about great violinists who were my mentor's & friends!!!! I met a British accented guy at my closest friend's wedding, who kept asking me out in London to go dancing!!! He was a good friend of the groom, and telling me he, the British accented 'Guy' owned a Diamond Mine near the City of Antwerp!!! No kidding!!! My just married girl friend cautioned me on whom to decline invitations from at their Wedding reception for just 750 of their nearest & dearest!!! (Truly!!! ) At least W. Nagel wasn't on the "Do Not Go for Coffee List"!!! We became polite friends when I was in London, but one wonders if Mr. Diamond Mine is still with us??? Btw, it is a genuinely marvellous International Violin Competition in Brussels, founded out of deepest respect in memory of Ysaye, Belgium's most prominent Violinist, as you are aware!!

This is fun!!

Best wishes to you, Jean ~

Elisabeth (Matesky)

Edited: September 13, 2019, 11:43 AM · Re the Bbb flat scale I played In Tune at Jascha Heifetz's Request!!! (62)
Gentlemen ~

As Mr. Heifetz once said to me rehearsing a Violin concerto, passing by & peeking in, "Carry On!" Enjoy your important 'off topic' discussion!! I'm just thankful I knew very little about all the math, etc., you chaps are divulging when on the spot to figure out How to play a Bbb flat scale, requested by
the Greatest Violinist of All Time!!! It took pure thought, but I could Hear it & fingered it before playing the scale in Three octaves before Jascha Heifetz!

Delighted it has sparked a side discussion, thank you for the scientific Info!

Elisabeth Matesky


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