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16 weeks into relearning
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (1 votes) 
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HP
Trondheim, Norway
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March 1, 2019 - 9:32 am
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A update video on how the progress goes. I feel like I haven't made much progress though, but I guess it will come with time. Feel free to give pointers to what I need to improve on.

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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GregW
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March 1, 2019 - 9:53 am
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Hello HP,

Sounding good!  I noticed how good your fingering is.  You look so precise and smooth with your finger placement and relaxed.  Envious..mine always degrades as the tune goes on but youre consistent and at ease throughout your video.  Glad you posted!  

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HP
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March 1, 2019 - 10:12 am
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@GregW Thank you for your kind words. My teacher is finicky about fingering and intonation, so it's something that I've worked a lot on. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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Gordon Shumway
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March 1, 2019 - 10:58 am
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I think you could keep your left wrist straighter - the way you don't bring it into contact with the neck (as I still do) is admirable, but maybe you have gone a little bit too far in the opposite direction. Watch how it starts perfectly then gets more and more bent.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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cid
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March 1, 2019 - 11:08 am
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Hi, HP. First. You are doing great. I don’t recognize the first song, but it was very good. If it is in the Suzuki Book, it is probably one that was skipped when I had an instructor.

The second song, “Minuet No. 1” by J.S. Bach is in Suzuki book 1 pg 38. I was on that page for a long time! For some reason, it is much easier on my cello. I love the song and it is fun to play, but took a lot of work and time. Proved to be so worth it.

Before I offer my suggestions for it, I want to say, you did a really good job on a technical, as far as I am concerned, song. But, you asked for suggestions, so I hope you don’t mind if I tell you what I did. I now have a lot of fun playing this song.

Look at the song as three separate little songs. Spend time working on measures 1-8. Treat it as one song. The eighth note runs, there probably is a musical term, but I don’t know it, are always an issue when we begin, I have noticed. Take those runs out of that little song work on those. Treat them as quarter notes until you are confident with them, then do them as eighth notes. After that, do the measure before it and go right into it. Do this for each run. 

Example: Measure 5 should be worked on its own slowly, then at speed. When you can do it at speed, add measure 4 and flow right into 5. Stop after you finish measure 5. Repeat as much as needed. Now work measure 6, which is very similar to 5. After that is smooth, start with measure 4 and end after measure 6. Now, do that whole little mini “song” until you can do it smoothly. Always play it twice, because it is repeated in the whole song before moving onto measure 9. So you have to be comfortable holding the G for 3 beats and then going to the D in the first measure. So this mini song is the 8 measures repeated.

Now work on the measures 9-16. This would be done the same way. You have measures 12, 13, and 14 to work on the eighth note runs. Make sure that measure 16 has that D held for 3 beats. 

After you have that mini song of measures 9-16 down, add measures 1-8. Remember to repeat measures 1-8 before doing measure 9. Hold all notes to their beat counts.

Now work on the last 8 measure, 17-24. Do the same thing I mentioned for the other two mini songs.

When you are ready, put measures 9-24 together. This is repeated in the minuet, also, so repeat when you put it together. Hold that B at the end for 3 beats before going back to repeat at measure 9. Remember to also hold it for 3 beats at the end.

Remember to hold the B in measure 8, D in measure 16, C in measure 20 and B in measure 24 for 3 beats.

Yep, I know a lot. But this song is so good to learn technical stuff and when it is learned, it will make going forward much easier, plus it is a heck of a lot of fun after it is smoothed out.

The third song I recognize as Etude by Suzuki. That sound really good, too. This, too, is a difficult technical fingering song. I broke this song down into mini songs, also. You should work on the runs, which might be easier to do if you worked them in the Minuet. Don’t go too fast. The speed will come on its own as the song becomes more natural. Really, it will, but it does take time. This will be fun to do, too.

So, you are doing spectacularly. It does help to break songs into mini songs. It helps to work trouble spots on their own before doing them in the songs.

Pay attention to intonation. I can’t believe how few times you were off, but most of the time it is with those trouble spots. Work on them at slow speed and then speed them up. It takes a lot of time.

I am certainly no expert. These are just things that helped me with those two songs, which later have helped me with other songs.

If you don’t move on right now, and spend time breaking these two songs down and working on them, and get them smoothed out, the time spent will certainly pay for itself later. This system with these two songs helped me with:

Intonation

String crossings

Loosen your bowing so it is more relaxed, alrhough yours is pretty relaxed.

These two songs have so many technical parts for fingering and bowing that they are a great place to stop and break them down to hone skills before moving on.

You can play simpler songs periodically so you are not just breaking these down. I might just work on one right now. The first I would do is the Minuet by Bach.

Add some simple songs to your practice before and after working on whatever you are doing with these songs if you go the breaking down route, to break the tedium.

I noticed one issue with all the songs. Make sure you hold the last note out to its full beat count. That is a bad habit to break if you don’t. Ask me how I know. 😁

I really hope this helps. Might or might not. That is just what worked with me for those difficult songs.

One thing I really notice is how well you and your violin seem to connect. I think you chose your instrument perfectly. You look like you are truly comfortable with it.

But all of this depends on your instructor. I typed this up on a notepad because editing within the textbox in the forum is not easy. I just noticed you memtioned an instructor in a reply you made, so your instructor might not agree with me. I learned the breaking songs apart from my cello instructor years ago.

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

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Gordon Shumway
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March 1, 2019 - 11:16 am
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Something else I notice is that your left elbow is always in the same position, no matter what string you are playing. You could try placing all four fingers on the E string together and holding them there and moving your left elbow about to see where it feels most comfortable, and then do the same with the G string. You should find that between those two strings your elbow moves quite a long way.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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HP
Trondheim, Norway
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March 1, 2019 - 1:00 pm
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@cid The first song is the first part of a Norwegian wedding march called Bruramarsj frå Vefsn. Maybe I'll post the whole later, but at the moment I only know the first part well enough to do something that sound similar to the tune. Not just random notes sprinkled all over the place.
You're right about the Minuet. I'm really poor at breaking down pieces into sections that works well under practice. Usually I end up playing a lot more than I need to, so I don't get as effective practice as I could get. On top of that I struggle a little with avoidence, meaning I tend to lean towards the things I find easier to do, not what needs to be done. Thanks for pointing out the problem areas, it's easy to go blind when one has been working on the same piece for long. Definitely going to practice more with a metronome. I think my teacher will appreciate it also, so he don't have to be a human metronome for most of the lessons. I see now that I forgot to mention that I left out the repeats on purpose on the Minuet. My laptop had little power left, so I wanted to get the recording done before it went out. Again, thanks for your feedback, I truly appreciate it.

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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cid
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March 1, 2019 - 1:09 pm
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@HP Reading your comments about my comments was like looking into a mirror. It is still hard for me to do what I stated, but I am finding it easier to force myself because I have seem how it helps me, and does make the rest so much easier, fun and fulfilling. Keep it up. You are doing great.

Oh, also, if you feel you need to repeat any lessons before moving on, don’t be afraid to let your teacher know, along with letting her or him know where you feel you are having difficulties that need more time. I had to do that constantly.

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

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HP
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March 1, 2019 - 1:16 pm
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@Gordon Shumway I see what you mean about the wrist. I thought maybe I bent it back to be able to reach the third and forth finger well, but it doesn't seem to have a relation to that. I will keep an eye out for the wrist, thank you. I will look more closely on the elbow as well. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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HP
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March 1, 2019 - 2:47 pm
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@cid Thanks. I will keep it in mind. Currently I feel like my lessons have the right pace. He still adds a couple of new things that I need to work on, but we go back and look at the old stuff as well as working on the new stuff. I find it a good way of learning, cause it keeps me busy and sharp and it doesn't become too boring and repeatable. It keeps me motivated to practice as well, because I get excited about what the next thing will be. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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cid
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March 1, 2019 - 3:05 pm
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Sounds like you have a good fit in a teacher.

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

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HP
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March 1, 2019 - 4:33 pm
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Yes, I'm really satisfied. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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Fiddlerman
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March 1, 2019 - 6:34 pm
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Thanks for posting this HP. You get a badge. Well done!!!

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

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HP
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March 2, 2019 - 9:43 am
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@Fiddlerman Thanks Pierre banana

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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Fiddlerman
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March 4, 2019 - 4:39 pm
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Anytime!!!

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

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mookje
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March 7, 2019 - 7:04 am
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Well done @HP and thanks for sharing your progress. As already mentioned, try to bring your left wrist more to the fingerboard. I stil working on that myself 😃

 Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about dancing in the rain!!

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Gordon Shumway
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March 7, 2019 - 7:46 am
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I'm the opposite - I hold my wrist too close to the neck, but curiously I'm finding that forcing myself to learn wrist vibrato is helping me keep my wrist straight.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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HP
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March 7, 2019 - 8:28 am
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@mookje thanks. 🙂

@Gordon Shumway Vibrato exercises are great way to learn how to keep the wrist straight. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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