A violin is a beautiful musical instrument. The sound you can generate out of this instrument is just magnificent. As a beginner violinist, you need to do a lot to master this skill, but you should not give up because no one is born great. All the greats had to work hard to achieve their mastery, and that should go for you as well. The following are some useful tips you can use as a beginner violinist.
1. Ensure You Have Everything Needed To Play
As a beginner violinist, you may not be conversant with all the materials required to play the violin. Here are some essential elements you need to ensure before playing the violin;
- Rosin: Imagine buying your violin from a store and realizing you do not have any rosin. That can be very annoying. Rosin is applied to your violin bow and strings to increase their friction and enable them to produce that sweet violin sound.
- Additional strings: This is necessary just in case you snap a string. Snapping a string seldom happens but when it does you need to have back-up strings. You may also need to change your strings after some time of playing.
- A technique book: This book acts as a guide and is therefore very important to a beginner.
Some other materials you require include; a music stand, a tuner, a shoulder rest, a rock stop and a wipe to remove resin off your strings when done. It is also vital to know the top best violin brands because there is a countless number of violin brands out there. It is almost inevitable for someone to come across some poorly made brands. The best violin has to deliver in terms of comfortability, sound, and durability. Always try out a violin before making a purchase. Avoid buying violins that are ridiculously cheap because more often than not, they are terrible brands.
2. Get a Teacher
As much as it may be easy to find some violin practice books and videos online, getting a teacher is a very crucial part of your journey to becoming a good violin player. A beginner, who has a teacher monitoring his /her play and guiding them through, will have a higher progression rate compared to one that does not. This is because your teacher will recognize the small mistakes you do and help you fix them immediately. Such errors go unnoticed to a learner without a teacher. It is also equally important to find a teacher you like as it makes it easier for you to associate with them and learn without tension.
3. Learn How to Grip the Violin and Bow
There are techniques of holding the violin and the bow while playing. You should place the left corner of your chin under the chin rest of the violin, and the shoulder rest should lie under your left shoulder. This is the fundamental way of holding your violin. With time, you will get comfortable playing in such a position. The key is to relax. As for the bow, many techniques can be used. You should, however, ensure that you can apply the force required to generate the music using the bow.
4. Have a Practice Routine
You need to set aside a certain amount of time every day to do your practice. Ensure that you practice every day and in case you miss a session, find some other time to make up for it. The more you practice, the better you become. Furthermore, ensure that you track your progress as practice would be meaningless without even the slightest of progress.
5. Get Inspiration from Soloists
As a beginner violin player or even an experienced one, you need to get inspiration from somewhere. Getting inspiration from a person you admire makes you work harder because you want to imitate them. You can listen to soloists you love twice or thrice a week and just analyze the sounds that come out of their violin. Some of the best violinists you can hear to include, David Oistrakh and Janine Jansen. You can then incorporate some of their creativity to your own style of play.
6. Make Recordings of Yourself
Recordings can be a helpful way of further analyzing how to play. As a beginner, you may think that you sound great, but the record reveals otherwise. While listening to a recording, you are like a person in the audience, and so you hear what they hear when you play. This way, you will be able to note the small mistakes you do and work on them the next time you practice.
These tips will help you know what you require as a beginner violinist and also how to become better. It is advisable that you find a tutor or mentor when you are just starting out, and as you get better, you can shift to some tutorial videos to learn some new skills. You should also be patient, and eventually, you will get where you want to be.