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How to read sheet music from a stand and watch my bow at the same time.
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January 18, 2021 - 7:30 pm
Member Since: May 19, 2020
Forum Posts: 34
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Greetings string people,

I have been finding some difficulty in reading my sheet music from a stand while watching my bow contact point on the strings.

If I pay attention to my sheet music, my bow is wandering away from the correct position on the strings.

If I pay attention to my bow, I fall behind reading the sheet music.

The only solution that I have found so far is to position my music stand directly in line with my viewing position for the bow- kind of puts my music stand to my side.

Any suggestions out there?

You all are the greatest- all opinions/suggestions/criticisms would be greatly appreciated.






January 18, 2021 - 7:43 pm
Member Since: August 23, 2020
Forum Posts: 976
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The obvious solution to your problem is to hire someone to stand in front of you and tell you when you are wandering👍

I actually had the same problem and posted a very similar question a few weeks ago. The fact that you have to think of so many different things causes problems,  I do exactly what you do now, I dont need to look where my fingers go, but I have the contact point problem. But I dont worry too much about the wandering because....,

 I  try to memorise the music as fast as possible, and then work on refining it, once its memorised its easier to keep everything else in place, at least for me that is

Bit more, bit more, snap #*÷?×[email protected]?#[email protected]

January 18, 2021 - 8:48 pm
Member Since: December 26, 2018
Forum Posts: 3610
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@JohnBAngel I think you found your solution. That is what I do. I also had to adjust my music stand for my cello, but for a different reason. I had to raise it so I would sit up straighter when bowing. But, solution is similar. The music stand where it needs to be for you. As Stringy said, memorizing the music helps, but, I cannot always do that and never while I am trying to get the bowing right. I place the stand for my bowing viewing, like you, when I play my violin or viola. I place it for my posture for cello. 

It is funny with the cello. If I already know a piece, or figured it out myself, I naturally sit up straight, but if I am learning it and/or struggling with it, I tend to keep bending down and getting right into my cello. Raising the stand has prevented that because I have to look up to see the music. My instructor told me to do that because he noticed it.

So, put the music stand where it helps you. I think that when we get more at ease with the instruments and better, we will have an easier time memorizing it. Until then, put the music where it helps the most.

The Bumblebee Flies!


January 19, 2021 - 1:29 am
Member Since: June 10, 2020
Forum Posts: 3454
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@JohnBAngel -

If you're not playing some long concerto, memorize the music. 

Then, I only focus on getting 1 thing right before moving on to the next, e.g. -

  1. look over your sheet music as a reminder of any special instructions 
  2. make sure your fingers are hitting the right spots,
  3. check your bowing,
  4. adjust/correct your timing & where you emphasize,
  5. try vibrato. (lol) 

#Johnny Depp from actorfilmography


My Brother bought me a really nice music stand a year ago - didn't have the heart to tell him I couldn't use it, even right in front of me, unless I enlarged all my music to poster size. (lol) 

- Emily

Katie M

January 19, 2021 - 3:49 am
Member Since: December 8, 2020
Forum Posts: 328
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You could try filming yourself play. I lean my phone up against my mug and I can easily see if I’m bowing straight or not. 

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