It’s hard to believe that I’ve been taking violin lessons since April. I bought a cheap violin-shaped-object off of eBay back in 2005 for under $100 and never really used it. I borrowed a friend’s violin for 3 months to take lessons at the Cambridge Center for Continuing Education in Harvard Square but that is where the lessons ended.
I guess part of the interest popped up again when a coworker said she was taking violin lessons here in town from a hilarious lady who plays in the symphony. I asked my mom to ship my violin and also asked relatives if they had violins they didn’t want. It turns out that my aunt still has several violins from when my cousin took violin lessons. My cousin is now firmly attached to her viola, and the violins are unused as my still-younger cousin has no desire to play the violin.
I now have a wonderful violin (for my needs) that needed a few inexpensive fixes (no cracks or body-issues) and the bow needed to be rehaired — talk about not cheap, but apparently it’s not something you have to do very often (phew!). The only hitch with it now is that the pegs don’t stay very well. Every few weeks the pegs need some drops, but that could also be due to the humidity/heat of the summer weather. Thankfully fall is roaring in. . .
Anyways, lessons are lessons and I’ve had to face a few irritating pieces of music that I’d honestly rather never have to learn. The current one is Happy Birthday. Who likes this song? I will say it is a very good exercise for walking fingers across strings and keeping your fingers in tune. It’s a piece everyone knows, but it is one I positively detest. Sadly I did not practice enough last week to have it checked off, so hopefully with some diligence I can get it checked off this week.
The hardest thing about some of these pieces is I honestly lose the urge to care if I do them well or not. Sometimes I wish I had a piano so I could sight read the piece to get an idea for how it’s ‘supposed’ to sound and then work it out on the violin. Almost 10 years of piano lessons = I think in terms of piano rather than like a person who has only played string instruments.
My instructor asked me about C Major and said ‘what is different about it from A and D Major?’ Well C Major is the scale with no flats or sharps. . . so this means it’s all white keys! Yeah, go me for giving her a piano reference that she usually gives her students and they just blink at her like she’s spoken in Greek.
Well, today will be more Tallis Canon and Flow Gently, Sweet Afton.
Happy Birthday will wait until I’ve built up the patience to play it for 5 minutes straight trying to get that blasted fingering and bowing correct.