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Slowly Getting the Hang of Vibrato
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Crazymotive
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March 17, 2012 - 10:43 pm
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I am slowly getting the hang of playing vibrato.  Actually I learned that I have been doing it all along, my main problem is that I tend to stiffen up too much and as a result I don't always get a clear and distinct vibrato. So, I am slowly working on trying to relax and I keep practicing the basic exercises and then incorporate it into my playing.  When i feel myself stiffening up too much I stop, put the violin down for a few minutes, and try again when i feel more relaxed.

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Moris
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March 17, 2012 - 10:55 pm
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I am glad to hear you are progressing with vibrato...that seems to be my problem, my left fingers seem to be a little too stiff...but again, I have really not spent a whole lot of time practicing vibrato, as after a few "stiff" tries, and go back to learning my tunes...but someday...crossedfingers

"No one can do everything, but everyone can do something."

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Fiddlestix
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March 18, 2012 - 12:10 am
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I don't know about anyone else, but I think my problem is that I'm trying to strangle the neck of the violin.  I have to do some work on relaxing my hand, wrist, arm and fingers.

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Crazymotive
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March 18, 2012 - 1:33 am
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Fiddlestix said
I don't know about anyone else, but I think my problem is that I'm trying to strangle the neck of the violin.  I have to do some work on relaxing my hand, wrist, arm and fingers.

Yeah, too tight a grip will definitely mess it up. That is part of my problem.   It also seems to be a matter of finding the exact amount of pressure. Too much and I end up vibrating the entire violin. Too little and there is barely any vibrato.  Finding that "golden spot" between too much and too little seems to be the key.

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Kevin M.
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March 18, 2012 - 10:03 am
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I had seen one demonstration to learning vibrato that may help you. In trying to learn vibrato you tighten up your grip on the neck without even knowing it. Probably because in our heads we will drop the violin. What the teacher did was to have the student stand with the scroll against the wall do there was absolutely no way the violin needed to be supported by the left hand. Then the student very slowly started doing vibrato and with the wall there, like so often happens the whole violin moves, the violin stays still and the student's fingers were moving.  As time goes on confidence builds the wall is no longer needed and the vibrato comes easier.

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Fiddlestix
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March 18, 2012 - 10:23 am
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Scroll against the wall, huh ?

Fantastic idea, thanks Kevin.

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Crazymotive
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March 18, 2012 - 5:33 pm
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Yes, I have heard of that. I am going to try it. Seems like a lot of it has to do with keeping the left hand relaxed.  For example, my vibrato is weak when I play on the E-string. For some reason i am getting too tense when I am up on the E. But, if I play in "3rd position" on the E,  my palm is against the rib of the violin I can do a beautiful sweet vibrato on the E because my hand/arm is more relaxed.

 

I guess it is just going to take time, determination,and PRACTICE !!!  It will take a year... or more of regular practice to develop good vibrato technique.

 

At the same time I don;t want to do too much vibrato right now as I want to also focus on playing good solid clean notes with good intonation. I want to be careful not to use vibrato as a mask for imperfect intonation.   I try to spend part of my practice using no vibrato and focusing on just playing the notes with the best intoonation I can manage.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
March 18, 2012 - 10:15 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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Great idea. If it works it's great.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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