Saturday, October 06, 2018

Off (Left) Hand Thoughts

I pay special attention to the way the fingers of my left hand relate to one another (in half steps and whole steps) when I am playing the viola or the violin. I try to keep the structure of my left hand in mind all the time, and when I am teaching I pay special attention to the structure of my student's left hand. I try my best to get my student to do the same.

It can be difficult to feel half-steps between the fingers when you are holding your hand in the kind of twist necessary to play the violin or the viola.

(I like to call half-steps "kisses" with my younger students. When you have a lot of half-steps in a piece, you have really romantic music.)

The other day during a lesson I likened the experience of feeling half-steps to the experience you have when you put a piece of dark chocolate (75% cocoa is my favorite) on your tongue. At first you can barely taste it, but after a few moments of concentration (and perhaps a few drops of saliva) you "find" the flavor.

I just thought I'd share this here.

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