Get this to the largest Violinist.com Discussion !
Thought it would be fun to see how many replies we can get on one post.
Doesn't matter what it is. It could be a single letter.
Hope I didn't waste too much of your time!
Sorry, if you wanted that, you'd need to post a video of you playing the fastest version of some Paganini caprice. Make sure to aim for the sound of "punching cardboard" as your tonal inspiration.
Ah is that a reference to one Mr David Krakovich? If so, he's trying with Scubert's "The Bee" at the moment
Well, there's always
I don't see how we're going to get there without getting into politics ;-)
Oh that's been around a while Christian. There's another one of a cellist simulating Formula One racing sounds.
Nice one, Lydia! :-)
We have to call David K. Either that, or someone has to come up with some baloney about how women are inherently disadvantaged in some miscellaneous aspect of music. THAT'll get you to 300 replies in no time.
I think the Covid Lockdown cabin fever is starting to show in this thread. lol!
I'm just wondering how long it takes for this conversation to include a rant about not using shoulder rests.
By politics, are we referring to the Meshi Party's chances in the next Israeli election? ;)
Shoulder rest...baroque vibrato...next in my repertoire...some crazy guy on YouTube...what is an 'A'...some poor scmhuck who wants to be a pro...women.
Julie I agree haha
I wonder how long it takes for someone to bring up Chinese violins? Oh wait, I just did :)
I don't think any threads can beat The Paris double-blind experiment thread started by Steve Jones. It has 1128 responses.
I think that the violin is expressively a much more limited instrument than the piano. Or maybe this should go into the 'unpopular opinions' thread?
Well as someone who’s played piano for over 40 years I can say the piano is extremely expressive, but I think the violin is more so, it’s just easier, in my opinion, to be expressive on the piano.
Sometimes one says something that one thinks is important and it gets no response, and sometimes one says something meant to be a throwaway and it generates a long discussion. So good luck, Ben!
Cotton, lets talk about the men instead. Until a generation ago harpists used to be all women. How could this glaring injustice be tolerated for such a long time?!
I blame the Marx Brothers.
I just won a brand new Chinese violin on an e-Bay auction, and boy, it's shiny enough to rate a really top-notch shoulder rest! What's the best shoulder rest in the $200-and-up range for Baroque repertoire? I want to play Baroque because I saw this Israeli guy on YouTube who totally shreds Paganini but there's no way I can attain that kind of virtuosity at my age. By the way, I know Corelli and Vivaldi are both considered Baroque, but since they're Italian wouldn't they also be Romantic? And doesn't that mean their material calls for lots of vibrato? I need to know because a professional should know these things, and as a full-time busker I'm a professional by definition, or maybe even a proffesional.
In fact professional orchestral harpists were also men, and a female harpist was often the first woman accepted into a professional orchestra (see Alice Chalifoux). I wasn’t going to join this thread but inaccurate information bugs me. Almost as much as autocorrect changing every “were” to “we’re.”
Use however much vibrato you would use when singing the passage. Don't let the fact that it is Baroque music stop you from doing what your heart tells you!
How do I make an address in my post into a clickable link??
Hi, such a lovely community!
"what's the best way to store a shiny Chinese violin when you're living in a van?"
Xuanyuan Liu: I know all that. I was engaging in deliberate, calculated stupidity, on the grounds that the goal in this thread was number of replies rather than the usefulness of the posts.
Jack, I think you're onto something. What do Villa-Lobos, Scarlatti, Messiaen, Palestrina and Enescu have in common? They're romantic composers.
Explaining a joke is like dissecting a frog. Just kinda gross and I don't like it when people do it.
Hi! Violas rule!
All right, so two (2) completely serious questions.
What Laura said!
Jack L, I think you forgot to mention the specialist chin rest that is necessary for playing baroque. Haven't seen any ads for them lately but I reckon the starting ask for such a speciality add-on would surely be well north of $200. I don't think they last well, either. I've seen so many violinists start off playing baroque with a chin rest but a few months later the device has evidently deteriorated to the extent that they have to play without it. Caveat emptor!
Cellos are bas(s)ically bass violas.
@ M Zilpah. Broadly true. For example, Elgar wrote a viola version of his cello concerto. But on the other hand I very much doubt whether Kodaly's Op 8 (a virtuoso sonata for unaccompanied cello with scordatura tuning) would work successfully if transferred to the viola - the 4-octave+ range required would be pushing it somewhat (but Hindemith “might” have managed it).
I need to find that viola version!
So, totally agree with what Jack said about what Laura said. So, just my two cents.
@Jack - I love the term "howling idiocy"! Nice!
Well, if history is our guide, the best way to gin up posts is to either 1. Call strict adherents of Suzuki’s method “cultists” or 2. State that all Luthiers should agree to install geared pegs in all their fiddles and replace conventional pegs with geared pegs on all repairs. Oh yea, and cutting your own bridge is child’s play if you have any woodworking talent at all! ;d)
Fun trick if you really wanna become "one" with the vibrations of your instrument (keep in mind, this is only for REAL musicians! No posers!)
Erik, I almost had an aneurysm reading that. Trigger warning!
@Erik, that works well for electrics too but you must have a Marshall stack and tape the stethoscope to the speakers at full volume.
What, no takers for Israeli politics and how the Israeli electorate clearly doesn't appreciate a candidate for PM who can play violin on a stationary bike?
This is a great thread already. Keep it up, ya’ll.
Andrew, some candidates move the Overton Window, and we thank them for their small bit of progress towards total dexterity for all humans.
Great thread, I've always wanted a feature on this forum where one less thread is visible on the first page.
The problem is, contention can create a long thread, but it can also get the whole thread deleted, as we saw recently.
Again this could go to the unpopular opinions thread, but now I'm talking seriously:
Miguel I absolutely agree. Music not politics
Miguel: Totally agree re political threads. Other forums elsewhere already specialize in that flavor of depravity.
Erin asked, "How do I make an address in my post into a clickable link??"
I did a course in HTML once, but it was useless, as most people use HTML Wizards, and the code is unmaintainable, as those Wizards generate 50 lines of code for every one you'd write yourself. But ultra basic stuff like this is probably worth knowing.
Thank you PD, I will try it! Maybe a little later, when I am fully awake...
Gordon, if someone did a course in Oz, the course in Oz was a medical degree, and people used an Oz Wizard (for purposes of watching), would that make the course in Oz useless?
Trevor, the only viola version I have of Elgar's 'Cello Concerto bears claims that it was produced by someone called Tertis. Mind you, bearing in mind that Anna Magadalena's manuscript of the E-minor Sarabande was found among Elgar's papers (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NglhgNdkC0E), it mightn't be too surprising if Elgar's original draft for viola of what he decided to publish as his 'Cello Concerto were to turn up among Tertis's papers.
OK, let's start a REAL controversy!!!
How about the idea that a viola is just a deeper sounding violin? :)
Some of us would be tempted to respond that the violin is just a stunted viola. ;)
My small string orchestra is firing up rehearsals again next weekend, and we will all be in masks, 6 ft apart, and of course no stand or music sharing. There are not that many of us but this is going to be interesting. We're playing at a wedding in 5 weeks if they don't lock us back down again. First rehearsal since early March.
@Jack, I can believe it; never had the chance to play one of his instruments (and at 50K and up each, probably never will lol) but I have heard one, and you're totally right; they are amazing violins!
Richard: yeah, I'd say they've earned their reputation.
When I was a kid my dad showed me that you can laminate layers of colored acrylic sheet (aka Plexiglas) together using solvent (he's a chemist too) and with his help I made myself a custom chin rest using chisels an a Dremel tool to carve it out. Unfortunately it was a terrible CR, but I insisted on using it and my teacher didn't protest. It looked really cool.
Carving acrylic isn't all that easy. If the tool is turning too fast it melts. And it doesn't have a grain that you can follow like wood.
Jack, glass has a s.g. of 2.5, so a glass chin rest would be substantially, and noticeably, heavier than a similar one made of wood or molded plastic. And then there is the engineering problem of attaching it to the violin, which may not be a trivial issue.
Started to make my own chinrests. Cool thing is, you can make them to your liking and are not thrown back to what is available, choosing for the lesser evil.
But wait--for those folks who are desperately seeking a rationalization for not practicing, wouldn't a glass violin be just the ticket??
Not to discuss politics, but a certain POS President wants to make things so bad with China, that Chinese violins will be a thing of the past, what are all our Chinophile violin promoters going to do when the supply of cheap Chinese violins completely dries up due to increasing trade war and possible real war with China, me thinks they won't possibly switch to quality antiques, it'll be Romanian for the high end, and the stuff they're pushing at the low end will be Indonesian and Vietnamese, or may be even Indian
Something I’ve often wondered but not worth starting a thread on, ( lots of these really):
Now I'm kinda tempted to have a shot a whittling a chinrest, just to see if I can.
The origin of "pinky" is apparently Dutch.
Paul, one of my Dutch-speaking relatives in Belgium confirms that "pink" is Dutch for "little finger". I would guess that this meaning of "pinky" in the US probably originated from Dutch settlers a long time ago. However, "pinky", meaning "little finger" isn't common usage in the UK - as a noun it is not even mentioned in the OED.
Chambers has eight definitions of "pink", four of which have a noun pinky associated. It's mainly Scotland and America where pinky is your little finger, from the Dutch, as you say. If you can't see it in the OED, it may be because that damn book has so much content it's hard to see any of it, or stay awake until you've finished reading a long article!.
Hm. Paul, why is it important to have a sense material for a CR? Sure, it adds stability, and it will not be possible to carve a delicate but stable firm from a very soft material, but I made several prototypes from softer wood like larch and spruce (just to check form and angle, they're easier and faster to carve...), and I have found both stable enough. I found only a small but noticeable correlation between weight and damping effect in my favorite center mounted model, so it might be thinkable that using lighter wood might help the sound.
If it's as much stability as possible you're asking from a CR, then do yourself a favor and RELAX! Not much force is needed to balance a violin or viola on a shoulder...
Nuuska I just meant probably you wouldn't want one EVEN MORE dense than ebony. I wasn't too clear about that. I agree that lighter might be better. Aren't there some made of boxwood? As far as synthetic materials it depends how rigid you want it to be and it can't be brittle because there's a fair amount of stress on it where the hardware is attached. Assuming you use the regular clamp type hardware.
Ah, now I got it. Totally agree!
What do you guys think about Tchaikovsky and his 6th symphony? Was his death by Cholera, or was it suicide? I think that the secret meaning behind his 6th symphony was his suicide note, and it is pretty clear to me in the 4th movement. Any thoughts? Also, I saw somewhere online that Shostakovitch was pro Stalin, but also read the he was anti. I think he was anti, put there is always room for arguments. Any thoughts?
Shostakovich's musical and political motivations were likely quite complicated. And unfortunately everything that you can read about it is tainted by all of the criticism (and praise) of his work that appeared in
@Paul, my dad premiered several of Shostakovich's works in the US. He didn't believe any of that issue of his work changing because being pressured by Stalin (as Khachaturian was, and was very dismayed) and pointed out that after the critique for formalism, Shostakovich won the Stalin Prize.
Thanks Dimitri that's interesting to know. And the history is important. But I'm not aware of scholarship within the last 20 years that moves the needle on it. It's a gray area and all I can say, as a music lover, is that I have really enjoyed what I've heard of his writing.
Well Paul, likewise, and you might have noticed that I'm named after him (but with three "i").
Tyler, things I have read include that Tchaikovsky's symptoms are more consistent with arsenic than with cholera, and that he committed suicide on the orders of a "Court Of Honour" who were worried that he would otherwise bring dishonour on his old alma mater - but I don't know any more than you can read about it in Wikipedia.
What's up everyone, I haven't logged in since 2011! Cuz I was too busy practicingggg
"Tchaikovsky's symptoms are more consistent with arsenic …"
Jack I'm glad I wasn't the only one who read that wrong haha
Hi Everyone! I'm really sad that the music camps being offered in the summer have been cancelled, but fortunately, there is a new virtual summer music festival called Inside Music Academy where students are able to learn from internationally acclaimed faculty and meet fellow musicians from all over the world! It's open to all levels.
Jack and Jake may have a point in saying that Tchaik's symphonies are more consistent with arsenic - They certainly have no choleratura!
Just had my 18th c violin back from the luthier where it has been for the last week or so. I thought, in view of its undoubted age that it would need repegging, especially since the small ends of the pegs were projecting about 3/8" outside the scroll box. This meant that the string holes in the pegs were now each in the wrong place, making it quite difficult to route a string correctly from the peg to its notch in the nut without fouling another string - the A string crossing the D in its pegbox routing was a difficult one.
Trevor - I guess that would always be a luthier's first option, until the holes are so worn that the pegs need to be inserted right up to the hilt! Something I've noticed in my 200 y/o unbushed violin is that where the A-string passes over the D-peg it now touches town on the peg itself, with the consequence that tuning the D slightly affects the A string and vice-versa. It sounds as if that's what you're describing, but just drilling a new hole doesn't change the fact that the peg is fatter than it should be where the A-string crosses over. Of course, if it's the coil of D-string that the A string is contacting then a new hole might be an adequate solution.
Steve, the main problem was indeed that the A-string was fouling the coils of the D-string. Problem now solved. I'm not sure whether there is still a minimal contact of the A-string with the D-peg itself - there doesn't seem to be any problem with tuning - but should it become an issue then that old standby of applying soft pencil lead to the area of the D-peg in question may well do the trick.
I improved the tone of my instrument greatly by using the Warchal "credit card method".
Erin, it's scraping the strings for gunked-on rosin with a credit card.
Here's something I've been genuinely wondering about but didn't consider likely to be worth a separate thread.
@ Jack L, I would expect that the larger internal dimensions of a 15" viola configured as a violin would significantly help the response of the G string compared with most 14" violins. One of my violins is a 14-1/4" (gut-strung), with bout widths and rib depths pro rata, and has above average response on the G string. I use medium gauge Chordas (plain gut) for A440 tuning with no problems.
The best reason to do it is if you are at a gig sitting next to a violist with a small viola and you can quickly swap their strings during the interval while they are in the toilet or at the bar, then see how they cope in the second act.
I restrung my narrow-ish spare viola as a violin: viola G, D & A, plus a dangerously tense E! (My 15.5" violas have a vibrating string length of only 14".)
Thanks for the remarks, guys. I may grab a 15" and try it just to see for myself. Mezzo violins in particular made me wonder about this in the first place.
Gordon Shumway, I’m watching you.
Gordon, that would be an interesting exercise to be on the receiving end of as well. Off hand, if someone did it to me I'd probably--in descending order of probability--(1) blow off everything on the C string; (2) fake it completely; or (3) shift upward by 2 positions (1st to 3rd, 2nd to 4th,
Adrian - your reasoning has me scratching my head. Presumably you wouldn't play a viola of any other size for the same reason? In my amateur world flexibility/adaptability is more important than mechanical precision. If you'd found yourself in my position, New Year's Eve c. 2000, you'd have spurned a loaned viola and turned down the chance to make up an ad hoc quintet/sextet with two members of the Chilingirian quartet and one of the Allegri.
Steve, I'm sure I should have enjoyed joining you for a quintet on New year's Eve in such company! But usually folks (and I) expect at least quasi professional intonation...
Adrian - My intonation might better be termed "queasy professional". I do believe you're right, that frequent switching between instruments of slightly different sizes has a detrimental effect. It's only since I gave up orchestral violin playing that I've become a collector of old instruments whose dimensions are often quite variable, and this undoubtedly hasn't done my intonation any good. However, I think the difference between a violin and even quite a small viola is great enough that after sufficient experience one can effectively throw a switch and go into one mode or the other with equal accuracy.
I play, or at least play at, both violin and viola. Of the two I prefer the voice of the viola, and finding intonation significantly easier to nail is a nice bonus. Whether that's due to a physical characteristic of the instrument itself, or some arcane feature of my mental wiring, or simply that I play the viola more than the violin, I don't know. Things get awfully squishy when psychology comes into the picture.
I hope you're not looking at me. ;)
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