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Using 4th finger/4th finger issues on viola
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Elwin
Houston
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January 28, 2017 - 11:02 pm
Member Since: January 3, 2017
Forum Posts: 83
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What tips do you all have at using 4th finger?

I'm having a few problems with it. Playing on a 16.5" viola, it's a bit of a stretch. I always hit the note, however, it's pretty flat when I compare it to the open string (the note is recognizable, as let's say a D, but it's a flat D when compared to the open D). I can stretch a little, to hit it spot on. I am able to hit 4th finger a little sharp as well.

The thing is, having to "stretch" does start to tire me out after a while. The two worse strings to do so is C and G. D and A, I usually get it spot-on. G-string requires some more practice, and C string is a harder stretch. I do use all 4 fingers to press down the string in regards to playing 4th-finger.

My teacher said that it was alright if I slide the third finger a little in order to help with the stretch. I do find it easier to press the 4th finger if my third finger is playing the high-3 fingering. 

I can't apply pressure at the left side of my pinky, like I do the other fingers due to the stretch.

My pinky is able to push the C-string down while remaining curved, for those who are wondering, however in the right position, it's a bit harder. In a low-4 position, it's easier.

Advice helps.

Thanks.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
January 31, 2017 - 3:53 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 12130

Yes, you can slide, you can stretch it a bit to hit the right pitch and also bring your elbow under the instrument a bit more to bring your fingers closer.

Good that you use more fingers at one time for added strength.

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

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Elwin
Houston
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January 31, 2017 - 6:14 pm
Member Since: January 3, 2017
Forum Posts: 83
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Fiddlerman said
Yes, you can slide, you can stretch it a bit to hit the right pitch and also bring your elbow under the instrument a bit more to bring your fingers closer.
Good that you use more fingers at one time for added strength.  

Yeah, it's rare that I have to slide. I find, however, that 4th finger is easier to get in-tune if my thumb is behind my second finger.

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Adaleona
Ohio, USA
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March 13, 2017 - 1:24 am
Member Since: March 1, 2017
Forum Posts: 35
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Hello!

What I do since I have short fingers and a 15" viola felt a bit too small for me, I felt more comfortable with a 15.5" and so the stretch was bigger. What I do is I kind of like rotate my wrist to stretch to hit that fourth note. I believe the more you practice the more your fingers stretch out and the easier it is to play. I've learned that I haven't been rotating my wrist as much and that my pinky can naturally reach that fourth note now. This is a suggestion though and it may not work for you.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
March 15, 2017 - 9:57 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 12130

Rotate and perhaps bring the elbow more under as well. 🙂

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

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