Perhaps we need a little humor in these times

November 24, 2022, 11:28 AM · In these difficult times, the performing arts have certainly suffered. And perhaps classical music in general and violin playing in particular. So, in the spirit of easing the burdens of today's worries, I'd like to offer a few (hopefully appropriate) smiles.

- No matter how hard I try, I just can't Handel the Bach sonatas.

- Don't practice too much; give your chin a rest.

- When I practice, I always get finger bored.

- The Bach Double Concerto soloists always end up playing neck and neck.

- As a child prodigy, Heifetz was a major minor.

- Bach in the good old days, it was different.

- The young lady just could not believe the jumping frog of her beau.

- Playing phrases at the top of the E string can give you high fits.

- A child prodigy is someone who was born with a clef palate.

- OK, I'm sorry about these. I guess I just don't have the right scale of values. Amati just as well do something else.

Anyway, I hope these random thoughts brighten your day and bring you a smile. If not, maybe you can find something to add.

In any (violin) case, have a great day.

Replies (46)

November 24, 2022, 12:49 PM · I love these. So very thoughtful. :)
November 24, 2022, 12:59 PM · I think you are just stringing us along. But I do like the sound of your post
November 24, 2022, 2:16 PM · Ron, I see you're taking me down a peg or two.
And Gabriel, thank you. Yes, it's always helpful in difficult times to take a step back relax (.....I can't think of a pun for that one).
November 24, 2022, 8:49 PM · Violin teachers charge ... by the Auer.

About a violin student who doesn't practice scales, one might say that the spirit is willing but the Flesch is weak.

November 25, 2022, 4:54 AM · Oh dear, my pianist had to dash back for his Christmas Chopin Liszt!
November 25, 2022, 7:10 AM · We keep harping on the same thing. (Which reminds me, I've got to buy a tuba toothpaste). See? When it comes to puns, I don't play second fiddle to anyone (except Henny Youngman). Let's just call it looney tunes.
November 25, 2022, 7:16 AM · I'm pretty sure your post violates the rules of the forum.
Edited: November 25, 2022, 7:20 AM · Yes, I've been accused of playing my viol-late. Well, I can get at least two-thirds of a pun (i.e., P U).
November 25, 2022, 7:26 AM · What do you call a person who plays the viola?
- Violator!
November 25, 2022, 8:07 AM · Viler and viler!
November 25, 2022, 10:20 AM · As for posts against rules...Just dounis do it again!
Edited: November 25, 2022, 1:47 PM · Yes, perhaps I should have created a more sound post. So I asked the advice of the Godfather's bodyguard (Mr. Cladenza), and he said no matter how you label it, it's not a rosinable thing for me to have done, especially since I have a horrible staccato.

(Incidentally, if you have a list of the greatest violinists, next time we meet bring the menu in.)

November 25, 2022, 3:12 PM · I'm playing an old fiddle: I lent Yehudi me new one.
November 25, 2022, 3:18 PM · Some of the accusations flying about seem to have struck a chord, we should build bridges and not let a nut spoil the harmony.
November 25, 2022, 4:30 PM · I have a gut feeling that Laurie wants us to check our writing carefully. A sound post will be clear and contain no errors of grammar, spelling etc.
November 25, 2022, 4:35 PM · I must go to the Barber before I travel to Britten and Ireland next week.
November 26, 2022, 6:41 AM · I won't bach if you do....but just a little off the top to spruce it up a bit....what barbers call a dust.
November 26, 2022, 7:15 AM · I’ve dropped a Glass - beware of sharp little Csárdás!
Edited: November 26, 2022, 3:02 PM · We taught our dog to play the violin. After performing every piece, he takes a bow wow.

Beethoven's Emperor Concerto was NOT named after Emperor Franz Joseph. But the question remains - What was Franz Joseph Haydn?

My violin teacher wanted me to play a passage forte, but I could only play thirty nine.

Remember the Beatles' song? - "Etude!...Don't make it bad. Take a Strad song, and fake it better..."

November 26, 2022, 3:10 PM · Sander, dogs make excellent violinists if you scratch the belly, and pay them for their performance with ribs.
November 26, 2022, 3:15 PM · Ron, I have no bone to pick with you about that. In fact, this discussion is giving me a new leash on life.
Edited: November 26, 2022, 6:22 PM · I loved that canzon - please Dont say it was Scheidt.

I hope this is not too rude. It occurred to me in the Metro as I was returning, violin in hand, from a concert in the university, and it made me laugh aloud.

November 27, 2022, 8:29 AM · Rude? Rude? Wipe that smile off your face! And next time don't flip your lid. (I think I'm on a roll)
Edited: November 27, 2022, 8:34 AM · The hardest part of this topic is trying to stay sharp and not repeat a joke that has already been made for fear that it would fall flat.

[Edit: I accidentally posted this initially in the Chin rest topic - perhaps I should have left it there for the inevitable confusion and attempts to make sense ....]

Edited: November 27, 2022, 9:12 AM · Elise: Don't worry about falling flat. It's more dangerous to fall sharp. :)
November 27, 2022, 11:36 AM · Or, for friends, out of harmony?
November 27, 2022, 2:24 PM · Yes. And the harmony of the violin art form and its music is what we all share and what we have in common. And that's worth lots of smiles.
November 27, 2022, 3:20 PM · Bravo to that!
Edited: December 7, 2022, 8:15 PM · Samuel Sebastian Wesley would sometimes send a deputy organist in his place so he could go fishing. On days when his catch was really good, he had to Beethoven. When it became apparent that the whopper was not the one that got away, but the one he told, it would Korsakov, and no way could he Rigoletto that one. Nothing remained but to Khachaturian into town, and at a Bizet time too. He would then feed the remaining baits to the indolent chicken (L'Arlésienne), which I first heard about in the 50s.
Unlike Wesley, I don't go fishing, I just go shopping in Cod Alley. Recently, in the basement of a grieg restaurant I started with earnest consommé, followed by right offspring chicken with brussels strauss, and finishing with pear gynt, drinking tea kept warm with a cosi. I couldn't afford the little prawns from Firenze, i.e., the Flo scampi, but it was hilarious coming up out of that basement - in fact it was a lark ascending.
The concert I went to afterwards included the Ritual Falla Dance.
November 28, 2022, 2:17 PM · Yes, there's nothing like when I ko daily on a Chicago L car to the local double bar to get myer beer and have some good bar talk with others - that makes my day. But first I have to go see my doctor (I fell and got a bad bump, and I have to have see what is making a leg grow).
November 28, 2022, 2:45 PM · That one about the L car is pretty difficult to Parry, even though I was also told that if Britten can Tippet, Boosey can Hawk it. It's time Oistrakh gold!
November 28, 2022, 3:06 PM · Dont DeLay! Not a minuet longer!
November 28, 2022, 3:14 PM · He’s a good dog, he doesn’t Offenbach.
Edited: November 28, 2022, 3:23 PM · Feeling thirsty, I had a Bellini in the Four Seasons bar. I wanted to Wolf it down!
November 28, 2022, 3:40 PM · ...great Boeing!
November 28, 2022, 7:14 PM · @Richard Pairaudeau--thanks for sharing! Some pretty great amateur playing!
November 28, 2022, 7:32 PM · Yeah, my comments leave something to be desired. In fact, I failed in the sword fighting class; my teacher told me I was a saber dunce. Sonata thing I can do about it. I even get alarmed listening to the Clock Symphony.
November 29, 2022, 11:45 AM · I don't get scherzo much writing these, even though everyone is telling me to "Stop! Stop!" (that's a double stop)
Edited: November 29, 2022, 12:58 PM · A toilet in a music academy washroom had a sticky handle. The janitor attached a note which read "Push down HARD on Handel." Someone wrote underneath, "If I push hard, will it push Bach?" Under that someone else added: "No, silly, it plays Water Music!"
November 29, 2022, 1:25 PM · That sounds like a mess (I, uh, would say).
December 2, 2022, 4:31 AM · Fiddlesticks! Bach to Bach they faced each other, the two soloists ... each took a bow, stringing each other along. Bowen hand they struck, playing for time ...
December 3, 2022, 8:33 AM · Everybody's an expert on Personally, I dodge egos.
December 5, 2022, 9:14 AM · My problem playing Bach is that I always got confugued. It took me a while to put my finger on it, but I think I was playing artifishy harmonics.
December 8, 2022, 11:41 AM · You may be confugued Sander, but when Maria Barbara Bach died, they got a hearse tocatta.
December 8, 2022, 12:59 PM · I guess the tune's tone was enough to give one a bad case of coffin.
December 8, 2022, 4:18 PM · For practicing which would B natural - to Sitt or stand?

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases

2023 Authenticate LA: Los Angeles Violin Shop
2023 Authenticate LA Shopping Guide Shopping Guide


Metzler Violin Shop

Southwest Strings

Bobelock Cases

Johnson String Instrument/Carriage House Violins

Jargar Strings

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop


Los Angeles Violin Shop


String Masters

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine