Progress

Three months into playing it, I’ve now worked all the way through the third movement of this Vivaldi concerto.  It’s been a lot of fun, and remains challenging.  I don’t think I’ll spend quite as long polishing this one before moving onto the next piece as I did the first movement – Teacher and I worked on that one for about seven months!  The position shifting is the hard part in both movements; this concerto is the first piece in the Suzuki repertoire with more than a fleeting shift.  In this third movement, there are several spots with shifts and accidentals simultaneously, which adds a layer of complexity.  All told, it’s a lot for me to get right in a very quick moment.  The finger spacing for the work in second position is also new and challenging – hearing what the notes are supposed to sound like so I can get good intonation works best when I go very slowly.  But it’s all coming along.

I’m also enjoying a couple of new Wohlfahrt etudes in e-flat major.  I had some previous experience with the key when I picked out a version of I Dreamed  a Dream – that linked post was written three years ago, quite a long time in my violin playing career!  At the time, I was quite proud of myself for being able to determine that I was playing in e-flat major based on my meager knowledge of finger positions and the progression of the major scale. These e-flat major etudes in the Wohlfahrt book are nice, but the key is actually quite tricky for we strings players.  And the etudes, of course, are quite a bit more complicated than the melody from I Dreamed a Dream!  I really like the sound of the key, though I’m only beginning to appreciate the many factors at work in a composer’s head when selecting keys for their works.

Finally, I’m playing the opening theme from Tchaikovsky’s first piano concerto.  Not only do I love it and find it heart-swelling, but I have a violin solos book that includes the tune so I didn’t have to go far for the music. I’m having a lot of fun with it and am using it to help me with vibrato.  The other pieces I continue to polish daily are the Bach Bourree from the end of Book Three and Ashokan Farewell.

All of that is a lot to squeeze in over the course of sixty to ninety minutes.  Maybe I’ll play for two hours today.

Thanks for reading.

Ryan

2 comments

  1. Bardiac · · Reply

    Congrats on your progress! I’m feeling eternally stuck on the first piece in book 4, but I think that’s a pretty common feeling. So, off to practice!

    1. Thanks Bardiac! Those Seitz concerto movements are a big level-up for sure – happy practicing!

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