Interesting paper from 2015 on shifting

Edited: May 4, 2020, 11:36 AM · Here's an interesting paper from 2015 on shifting. Seems you shift at the same speed regardless of tempo. I have a theory that the pitch accuracy of a shift is determined by a non-conscious awareness of the time it takes, as that is a constant. How about it folks?

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4636401/

Replies (7)

May 4, 2020, 11:38 AM · How does your theory about the time-evolution of the shift apply to violinists who double on viola, where the distance (and therefore the time) is longer but the pitches are the same?
May 4, 2020, 11:46 AM · Paul makes a good point
Edited: May 4, 2020, 11:57 AM · Paul, initially (maybe even only for a few minutes) mistakes happen. Is viola in 3rd same as violin in 1st? I'll do some measuring.

Edit: my viola is just over a semitones 'longer' than my violin. 2nd pos on viola is about 1st on violin. But more to the point, it's like driving a different car - within a few miles you've gained a new coordinate set.

May 4, 2020, 12:13 PM · That's what I thought your answer would be, and I don't think it's unreasonable. The question is -- how do you *test* your idea?
May 4, 2020, 12:40 PM · I think it's in the paper. It's interesting they failed to make this, the most important conclusion, in their paper but they're only scientists!
Edited: May 4, 2020, 12:47 PM · I briefly skimmed the abstract, and I will read the whole thing later, but it follows for me that people will essentially shift as fast as they can do it relaxed, unless they are trying to achieve a certain audible effect. My teacher has essentially advised me to wait until the last possible moment to shift, which I have found to be sound technical advice, although I don't want to risk putting words in her mouth or oversimplifying her advice, but I think in a general sense, it really is about that simple.

The Yankelevich book attempts to give a scientific, or at least quantifiable framework for effective shifting. It's interesting.

Thanks for sharing Bud!

May 5, 2020, 12:16 AM · The article is long, maybe I'll try to read it another day. My lecture on shifting is: Remember the three S's - Simple,-Straight, - Smooth. It is one of the many paradoxes of this instrument that the smooth, slow shift works better, is less likely to miss, than jumping around, lunging, whatever. For that Kreutzer etude, we sneak around the fingerboard. A very long time ago I saw a very slow-motion close-up film clip of Heifetz' left hand. I was hoping to see some "secret" technique. I saw nothing. Years later I realized that that was the whole point. Each finger moved smoothly, efficiently, from where it was, to the next spot. No wasted or uncontrolled motions.


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