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I'd very much appreciate suggestions on how to play the violin with very large hands/fingers. I've posted a couple times before and received valuable help, so I thought I'd go to the well again. I've just been playing/learning violin for 9 weeks; I have extra large hands and fingers and my fingers, no matter how tightly I squeeze them together, won't fit where they should unless I lift one or the other fingers.
My teacher keeps suggesting I switch to the viola; I played his for several days and it is clearly much easier for me, but it's a very sad/melancholy sound, and I really want to play the violin. I know there are very talented violinists with large fingers and I'd very much like to know how they do/did it. Is it merely by not keeping two fingers next to each other at the same time; how do they play double stops where one finger is on one string and the other string is open (my fingers can't just touch one string at a time). To be clear, I don't have Shrek hands, but clearly they don't fit the violin easily.
What should I be doing/focusing on? Any tips to make it easier to find the right location without using immediate proximity of another finger? Thanks!
Springer - that's an interesting idea. But my problem isn't with the size of the strings as much as it is about size of the fingerboard and how close the half-steps are to one another. I only have this problem when playing half-steps.
And the viola I borrowed was 16.5" (significantly larger than the 4/4 violin); the viola fingerboard was a perfect fit for me.
Here's a link to help you:
MYGUITARNOW - thank you so much! When I first went to the link I started laughing at the picture of fat franks on the bbq, and thinking you were just being funny. Fortunately, before I left the site I glanced at the header and saw this is actually a site/forum topic that addresses my question. Can't wait to read through it; thanks again!!!
myguitarnow - just read the entire link you ref'd and watched the vids; great solutions; I've been incorporating about half the suggestions and will shortly try the other suggestions. This link was a HUGE help; thanks again!
In my opinion, this site is spectacular; Pierre seems to be boundless in his desire to help the fiddle community and the site members are so responsive and willing to help; the resources of this site are incredible! I'm so glad I found this site and am a member. <img class="spSmiley" title="dancing" onclick="spjEdInsertSmiley('dancing.gif', 'dancing', 'http://fiddlerman.com/wp-content/forum-smileys/', '');" src="/wp-content/forum-smileys/dancing.gif" alt="dancing" />
ahhhh, now I get it Springer; change strings on a viola (which fits my hand better) to violin strings to get more of a violin sound..... did I get that right? Sorry, didn't follow you exactly at first.
I'm getting a viola on Monday and after I'm comfortable with it, I will actually try swapping the strings to violin strings to see if the viola then sounds a little brighter. That's a great idea, I'll try it!
My violin is a Scott Cao and I LOVE it; biggest bang for the buck I believe. And the viola that is coming is also a Cao and I'm dying to hear it.
Thanks Springer; great "outside the box" idea.
That sounds very cool! If I could get the playability of a viola and a sound closer to the violin,,, man, best of both worlds, with maybe a bit warmer sound. Can't wait to try it out! Thanks everyone!
FM, I look forward to finding out if there's a violin E string that works on a viola. Wait though,,,, I don't know much yet about the viola, but what do I use as a C string???
FM, I have searched hours for a 16+" E string for my new viola; and have finally located what I think is the right product and a source.
It's the D'Addario Helicore Viola "E" string Heavy, model H415 LM
Found it at musicpartsplus1.com for $12.98 including shipping
When I get the string I'll re-setup as a violin and let you know how it works.
Well, my viola 'E' string arrived last week! I re-strung the viola (16.5") as a violin, and it seemed to work fine and it sounded pretty nice, but not a viola and not a violin (or any that I'd heard before, lol). But after a week of playing it, I decided to re-focus on the violin, and am much happier/comfortable with it.
I was going to vid/record it and upload it so you could hear it, but I was so disappointed in the outcome I forgot to do it before I returned my viola to the shop. I don't know if it's because I'm so new to the violin and too inexperienced and was just not ready for the "experiment", or if because I'm so new, I just feel a strong connection/comfort with my violin, despite the fingering accommodations I have to make for it to work.
Anyway, it was an experience!
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