Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
  • Author
  • #12057 Reply

    Chris Guleff

    Comparing notes from many friends who played violin when young but never pursued professionally into adulthood, I’ve found that one of the detriments to regular practice is having to listen to oneself play. Playing was once so easy and flowing — high level of confidence. I was able to play symphony-level pieces in the original — Brahm’s 1st – Beethoven’s 3rd. Yes, there were challenges, but making a good sound didn’t seem so difficult then. Now, I sound like Jack Benny!

    How do some of the rest of you handle this problem?

    #12711 Reply

    William Bickerstaff

    I just keep going… and going… and going… I know that if I keep it up, I may surpass what I was once able to do. Lets label that …Hope.

    #13709 Reply

    Gayle Thompson

    I’m a classically trained cello player but I gave it up after high school. After a few years, I thought – I’ve always wanted to play the violin – I used to fool around with one sometimes, so why not?
    So I purchased a violin and to my amazement, it was the most difficult instrument I’ve ever tried to learn! Even with a head start so to speak, it took me a solid year to get anything resembling music to come out of the violin!
    Don’t give up!

    #13731 Reply

    Dianne Adkins

    Perhaps key here is ‘confidence’. It comes easy in youth. In age, we are given a different set of gifts. Now your ear may be more refined. When you play in a group, you always think you sound better than you probably do, playing alone. And perhaps now you have a higher standard of what you want to be hearing than you did as a younger player.

    Whatever the problem, it can be overcome! if you are willing to do the work. Set small, reasonable goals. Look deeper at HOW you’re playing to improve technique and tone. William’s advice was most important of all. Never give up!

    #13777 Reply


    It takes determination and patience. When I began taking lessons as a child my practice place was the attic!!! I had 9 brothers and sisters and we all were learning to play different instruments. After giving up the violin for the french horn a few years later I now have returned to learning to play the violin at the age of 66. The basics were there but not the technique. Dianne you are right, I think as an adult we now have different expectations and time now is a factor. I am happy to say that by getting some lessons, having a routine, and getting involved with others who love to play has made the difference. I can say that I have far surpassed my playing skills and have developed a greater love of music as an adult.

    #14047 Reply


    When playing my violin I find it very difficult to not have a curled up 4th finger. Many fiddlers / violinists are able to extend their 4th finger when playing notes with the other 3 fingers being ready for when it’s the 4th finger turn. What exercises can be done so that the finger does not stay curled up until it is needed to be placed on the string. Thank You.

    #14193 Reply


    I am shy about anyone hearing me play. It is like I become emotionally cluttered when others are around. I have taken care of so many people for so many years it is hard to turn it off when anyone is around. Also,I have a son with severe autism that can be sensitive to sounds so i have to work around that. However, I am determined to get past these issues, and am setting up a time to practice via Skype with my friend, Kelly, who is also picking up her violin again. We will follow the Violin Pro videos for awhile. Once I have got myself sorted out I want to get into the program with a mentor.

    #14449 Reply


    The videos and information on this site gave me enough confidence that I hadn’t forgotten everything. I went to a music store and tried 3 violins. After 48 years I still was able to bow well enough to tell the difference in sound between them and do basic scales. That encourages me that with practice I could enjoy playing again. I hope to get a violin again soon.

Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
Reply To: How to get over reticence when returning to play after so many years?
Your information: