Greetings first Post

August 26, 2023, 11:31 PM · Been playing violin for about 20 years give alor take a couple years never had an instructor so it kinda discouraged me from practicing when I played in middle school so I only got to the intermediary level

Probably thee technically advanced piece I have played is the two following

Motzart: Nachtmusik
Bach: Double Violin Concero
Pachellebelle: Canon in D

I'm wanting to play more challenging pieces as far as chords are concerned as well as something that might require a bit more dexterity from a faster tempo/subdivisions and something that would allow for me to practice higher positions I would prefer not to bite off more than I can chew but would appreciate any pieces that any of you guys can suggest so I can improve upon what I already know I'm looking at pieces for chords and found the Chaconne by Bach as well as the passacaglia by biber

Which leads me to my question

In Chaconne literally the first chord in the piece is a D F A which I don't know how D and F could be played together they are on the same string the F and a could be played together but the A could be a little harder to play because second finger would be on the D string the D and A could be played together easily I heard something on a video about this piece about "Voices" could someone explain?

Furthermore there's a chord on the passacaglia that's a G on D B on A and G on E your fingers would overlap and be impossible to play neither of these pieces are written to be played Da Vici so I am clueless on how to tackle them any help would be appreciated

Replies (10)

Edited: August 26, 2023, 11:55 PM · Very respectfully, the Chaconne is way, way beyond your skill level. Please don’t waste time and effort on it. It is a piece for professionals and extremely advanced, near-professional students. (Though to answer your specific question, the opening D is played with the fourth finger on the G string.)

I strongly recommend you look up fiddle tunes with the chords written out. Another good piece to look at is the Accolay. The last two pages have some fun double stops.

Good luck!

August 27, 2023, 12:07 AM · Thank you for the Clarification I haven't really been looking at the violin or the piece very long but I still don't understand the fingers would still overlap while playing it
August 27, 2023, 12:21 AM · I would strongly recommend that you get a teacher. A good teacher would know best how to tailor your lessons to help you reach your playing goals.

In terms of specifics someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I would say technique work would help you the most since it would help you isolate each aspect of your playing. For double stops, I would start with something like either Trott's melodious double stops or just plain old-fashioned scales in at least thirds sixths, and octaves. For dexterity, the Schradieck book for finger dexterity is a classic, and for high positions, there are three-octave scales. I would recommend Barbara Barber's Scales for Advanced Violinists since it lays out each of the 24 scales very nicely including their respective double-stop scales. However, whatever you decide to do, as I said before it would be wise to do it with a teacher so that they can monitor your progress and make sure you're practicing them correctly. Pieces are great, but they have a lot more variables compared to technique where they will allow you to focus on specifics through the guidance of a teacher at your current stage of development.

That being said, Mary's suggestion of the Accolay is an excellent one. Haydn's G major Concerto could be another good one as well.

August 27, 2023, 12:27 AM · Also, I'm not sure what you mean by the fingers overlapping, but one way to think about it would be to build the chord up from the bottom. First 3rd finger G on D, then 1st finger B on A, followed by 2nd finger G on E. It's very possible.

I must agree with Mary Ellen a second time and respectfully say that these are much above your current skill level. The fact that you were unaware that open D can also be played as 4th finger on the G string in order to play the chord is very telling...

Edited: August 27, 2023, 12:29 AM ·

While it doesn't delve into the level of detail that you describe, there's a really excellent YouTube masterclass by Isaac Stern on the Chaconne. Watching it, one begins to sense the level of sophistication of this amazing composition.

It was kind of amusing. After listening to the student play the piece all the way through, Stern asked, "How much time have you spent with the Chaconne?" He responded, "Two weeks."

August 27, 2023, 1:07 PM · Hi Blake, it would benefit you immensely to play in other positions and realize how double stops can work. Personally I'd play that D with 3 on the G string, so I can play F with 1 on the D string--but this all depends in general what comes before and after (not just in the Chaconne). There are so many possibilities when you are comfortable all over the fingerboard. In fact, the Partita #3 has string crossings on the A and E where the notes on the A string are higher than those on the E string!
Edited: August 27, 2023, 2:24 PM · If the prospect of "getting violin lessons" seems expensive to you, what you might do is ask one of your local teachers if you can pay just by the lesson, and schedule two lessons for now. At the first lesson the teacher can hear you play, correct any gross errors in your posture and hand positions, recommend maybe a different chin rest or shoulder rest (if you use these), and suggest a few pieces and studies that would be at the right level to work on. That should take about an hour and might cost you $100 depending where you live. I have to say that without at least that much tutelage you're probably just wasting your time. If $100 is beyond your means then maybe there is a local community-orchestra member who would help you for less than a professional violin teacher, but their advice won't be as good.
Edited: August 28, 2023, 2:33 AM · About Carmelo de los Santos playing for Isaac Stern. Why didn't Stern bring his violin?

Blake, Christian Harvey suggested Trott. That's a good suggestion. Whistler also has a double-stop book. Check that one out, too.

I think you like the sound of Bach. I suggest learning the S&Ps in a graduated way. Begin, say, with the double following the Sarabande from Partita no. 1. It has broken chords that teach you to blend notes that follow each other.

Here's a model:
and also:

August 28, 2023, 5:22 AM · Telemann 12 Fantasias for solo violin are much more accessible than the Bach Sonatas and Partitas and good music.
Edited: September 20, 2023, 10:37 AM · "Fingers overlapping".
To play chords and arpeggios the creases opposite the knuckles should usually be in line with the strings, so that all four fingers form arches over the fingerboard. Sometimes, the finger on a higher string will have to curl almost under itself and push the string a little to the right rather than straight down, to get out of the way. At other times fingers may have to separate more than usual. The wrist, and maybe the elbow, must allow the hand to rock to the left and right as needed.

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