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Redoing my form
I have a new teacher that asked me to play but I got so nervous I shook and tensed up. Because of this, I feel he wasn't able to give a good assessment. He asks me to forget everything(or most of what) I know and gave me 'corrections' on my form. I'm open to new ideas but it's so hard(emotionally/psychologically) to let go of something I worked very hard on especially that I feel very comfortable with it. What should I think about or do so I can be more open to this change and not feel bothered about it?
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July 31, 2013 - 8:15 pm
Member Since: July 31, 2013
Forum Posts: 12
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I stopped taking violin lessons a few months ago since I simply didn't have the time to go to the violin school anymore. Since then, I had to practice by my own. I recently decided to take lessons again since my schedule is now freer than before and I found a new violin school much nearer to my home.

During my first lesson, I got so nervous that I started shaking even before getting to the school and meeting my teacher. When we finally met, he asked me to play anything. I was shaking so much and was so tensed that I feel that I wasn't able to show him my true form when playing. Nevertheless, I let my teacher give an assessment and do corrections on my form.

I'm not happy with some of the corrections he made since I already feel very comfortable and can do shifts and wide vibratos with it when I'm not nervous. I didn't say a word about it since I feel that he might really be onto something, after all, he's the professional and I am not.

Is it, however, really worth to change my form so much? I feel that if I was only able to show him my playing without being so tensed that he wouldn't think I needed the change and we can focus on drills and exercises. He told me that I'm just getting used to the new form and after 5 more lessons, I'll feel better and even thank him. For my first assignment too, he explicitly asked me not to practice until the next week, probably to help me forget everything I know and open up my mind. He said that if I can't do this, I can find a new teacher but if I follow him and give him a chance, he'll do his best to make me improve.

To be honest, I like this new teacher of mine and feel that I really should listen to him and give him a chance (well I should). It just bothers me so much that I have to redo the form I worked so hard on. What do you think I should do/think about so I can be more open to this change?

Merritt Island, Fla
Pro advisor

July 31, 2013 - 8:24 pm
Member Since: June 25, 2012
Forum Posts: 1281
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I'm not going to second guess your teacher. I do feel that you will constantly reevaluate alot of your playing technique as you strive to improve. Self analysis is a natural part of learning. You might as well give his advice its full due since as you said, hes the pro. relax and breathe. have fun.

"Please play some wrong notes, so that we know that you are human" - said to Jascha Heifetz.


July 31, 2013 - 8:47 pm
Member Since: June 30, 2011
Forum Posts: 2679
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think the best advice is give him a chance and see if you improve

There is no shame in playing twinkle, youre playing Mozart

Regular advisor

July 31, 2013 - 9:13 pm
Member Since: June 13, 2012
Forum Posts: 160
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And do you want to pay someone for their advice and NOT listen it it?!?! Tell him your concerns and why you think your way is better, that way it'll force him to tell you why his way is better and you can be at ease. 

Fort Lauderdale
July 31, 2013 - 9:46 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 15154

I don't think your nervousness can affect what he sees as much as you think. There is a certain way of holding the instrument and bow and he probably just wants you to try doing it the "right" way. Not sure if he knows what he is doing but if he is a pro, he has been educated and hopefully the right way. :-)

You can always take some pictures or video of what you are doing now and let us judge. smile If he is way off we'll let you know.

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

Regular advisor

July 31, 2013 - 10:15 pm
Member Since: December 14, 2011
Forum Posts: 196
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I am of two thoughts on this:


1.) My way or the highway sounds wrong. Is this the attitude you that will help you attain your goals? 

but on the other hand

2.) Everyone who changes instructors is nervous with a new teacher, meaning he probably knew you were not at your best. His opinion was still your form needed a a little help. He asked for 5 lessons roughly 5 weeks of trying something new. At the end of the trial period he set if you still feel like you do now and have not improved as he said remind him of the expectation he set. (but only if you do your part as a student)

If it really takes 5 years to learn and you really do like playing violin, 5 weeks is a short detour. 

Russia, Tatarstan rep. Kazan city

August 2, 2013 - 4:25 pm
Member Since: October 7, 2011
Forum Posts: 2849
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 He said that if I can't do this, I can find a new teacher but if I follow him and give him a chance, he'll do his best to make me improve.

According to the desciption of your teacher, he looks like a reasonable and skilled person. If he said so, then he sees your concerns and lets You decide anyway. I'd gave him a chance.

August 3, 2013 - 11:59 am
Member Since: July 31, 2013
Forum Posts: 12
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Great replies from all of you. Just to make myself clear, I was really going to give him a chance from the start. I was just bothered by his approach that I needed to hear from other people that I shouldn't be. I can't wait for my next lesson and play my violin again. Thanks guys smile

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