Tagged: Expression Musicality
June 29, 2016 at 4:51 am #15979
One of my most memorable lessons in summer music camp was when one of the teachers coached a group of us on putting more expression into our playing. He did this is such a non-judgemental, encouraging manner. I still remember this lesson which took place over 50 years ago. The violin is such an expressive instrument and sometimes expression takes (sorry for the pun) second fiddle to technique during practice. So many etudes can become less of an exercise in drudgery if we treat them more melodically.June 29, 2016 at 7:58 pm #16012
Thanks so much for the reminder. I should really put more emotion in my playing. I do feel the emotion but I find it hard to put the emotion in my playing. For example when I play I think I’m putting the emotion in it but then when I listen to my recording I don’t hear the emotion… Could you share some tips he gave in that lesson 50 years ago? Would love it! 🙂June 29, 2016 at 11:30 pm #16020
Yes Chris, I would like to have you share some tips from your teacher too. I know that I need to put more feeling in my music and when I have the piece really memorized I find that I can do that much easier than if I am still learning the piece.July 5, 2016 at 8:53 am #16310
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!July 5, 2016 at 12:07 pm #16311
Thanks so much Chris for the tips! I really do have to start thinking of the bow as my voice. 🙂July 9, 2016 at 12:51 am #16444
Thanks Chris- I am so focused on technique I forget expression- this is something I am going to start working onJuly 12, 2016 at 10:19 pm #16593
I find this a little bit difficult because ir takes a while to learn how to manage a lot of stuff with the bowJuly 13, 2016 at 1:39 am #16599
That’s my problem too! I’m so happy if I can produce a sound that’s not scratchy and move the bow up and down without going crooked. Then adding all the other stuff for the expression is really hard to do. I guess it takes quite some time to learn that!July 18, 2016 at 3:40 pm #16854
I need better control over dynamics. I really work on it, but have trouble steering the bow from soundpoint to soundpoint.