I’ve been asked to share some of the tips one of the summer camp teachers gave us 50 years ago. Here’s what I can remember:
1 – Expression is all about bowing. He said not to think of it as technique, but as artistry. Think of the bow as your voice, your means of expression.
2 – Imagine you are singing, telling a story or taking part in a conversation. Put emphasis where needed, soften where needed and end phrases lightly rather than abruptly.
3 – Put your body into your playing. Don’t stand there stiff. Sway, lean forward with a little bounce. This goes for your head as well. If you play stiff and deadpan, that’s how you’ll sound.
4 – Most of all, listen to yourself as you play. It’s not just playing in tune or keeping in time with the music.
5 – Keep in mind that it’s all about phrasing.
Hope that helps!