Chinese Proverb

"Tell me and I'll forget. Show me and I may remember. Involve me and I'll understand." - Chinese Proverb.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Lesson #69 (05/24/12): Long Long Ago (bow hold, volume)

A quick lesson before I go on my dancing trips, first to Seattle for a weekend workshop and then the following week another dancing workshop in San Francisco!

Long Long Ago:
We worked on Long Long Ago and my sound was sounding awful and I was struggling with my fingering for some reason. Things we worked on:
  • Volume and opening up the sound
    • I was pressing down on the bow again, and Adam reminded me to lead with my arm which fixed that! :)
    • Also, I was moving my shoulders too much instead of opening up my arm. I should think about free open movement, and no tight shoulders. 
  • Intonation - my fourth finger G keeps being to sharp ...again... I hate my pinky! 
  • Keyhole - I forgot about the keyhole analogy to get the bow in the correct alignment. The hair of my bow was laying flat against the strings, because I had been working on more volume, which is good in certain cases but shouldn't be my default. 
    • Anyway, when placing my bow on my string, I should imagine that the frog is a key, and when I bow the frog should be able to go into an imaginary lock; that is vertically. When I move to different strings, that still applies, which is why there are different elbow heights. Adam had actually explained this to me in one of my first lessons, but I had completely forgotten about it!  

Long Long Ago Variation:
  • A string - the notes I play on the A string seem to be muddied and not very clean. Adam recommended practicing these notes but over exaggerating these notes and making sure I have the string before I play the note
  • G string - notes on the G string are too short and not very clean. Adam recommended that I focus on the notes on the G string as well, and for now put accents on all notes on the G string. This way, it forces me to grab the string, and then later we can work on smoothing it out. 
  • Bow placement - make sure after the up, up bowing that I get back to the frog. I should be using the weight of my arm to really grab the string, which is easier when I'm back at the frog 
  • String crossings - make sure that I'm leading with my arm/elbow and not my hand which was what I was doing. When we get into more advanced bowing technique, then there is some technique that requires more hand movement, but for now it should all be in the arm with my hand just going along for the ride. 

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