Browsing all articles in Left Handed Violin
Apr
14

You Don’t Have To Be Ambidextrous To Play A Left Handed Violin!

Ideally, a purpose-built left handed violin would be the obvious marriage for left-handed violinists, however it should be duly noted, that there are also right handed violinists who both prefer, and are more comfortable in using the bow with their left hand! This fact has both perplexed and frustrated many a teacher of the instrument and their students have, for the most part, been greatly encouraged to practice with their right hand – which is not necessarily the ‘wrong hand’ – save for a few technicalities.

To overcome one of these technicalities, some violinists simply string their violins ‘backwards’. However this is not an optimum solution as it places both the bass bar and the sound post, in the wrong positions. Also for left handed violinists playing within an orchestra, they are literally using their bows in the opposite direction, causing bumping, distraction and ultimately disharmony to their fellow right-handed counterparts!

Music and instrumentals have come a long way in recent years! It is possible to have a ‘right-handed’ violin converted to easily satisfy a left-handed player or better still – to purchase a specially made left-handed violin. The basic ‘look’ of the left-handed violin has the same dimensions, image and characteristics of it’s ‘right-handed’ counterpart and in fact there are absolutely no changes at all to the back, or to the sides, of the body of the violin. In other words, visually identical.

To adapt to the ‘left-handed’ violinist, the changes that are necessary, are all located in the top, and the neck areas of the violin. Strings from the right to the left will be G-D-A-E. Shape of the bridge requires adjustment and also the positioning of the peg-holes require modification. Importantly, the chin rest on a left handed violin is totally the opposite as for a right-handed, and is specially carved to accommodate the right side of the chin.

In conclusion, a ‘left-hand’ violin can produce music as beautiful as a ‘right-hand’ violin. The comfort and practicality of the instrument being of paramount importance to the ‘player’!

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Feb
14

Learn to Play the Left Handed Violin for Beginners

When you go to a concert, have you ever wondered how to learn to play the Left Handed Violin to be as professional as the violinists out there? Perhaps you may need to take violin lessons from a dedicated and experienced teacher in order to achieve this. You may think that this is difficult but do not worry. Many people like you want to learn to learn to play the Violin and they have achieved this goal. In this article, I will share with you some time for you to learn to play the Left Handed Violin.

First tip: correct posture

First of all, you will need to be aware of your posture when holding the violin and the bow in the beginning. If possible, lean to play the violin with your teacher in a music room or studio that has a mirror. During your violin lesson, face the mirror to ensure that you are standing straight. Some people hunch naturally and this causes them to cramp up after some time when they learn to play the violin.

Second: hold the violin bow correctly

The violin bow is a natural extension of your left hand as you use the violin bow to play on your violin. As such you need to know how to hold the violin bow correctly.

Place your thumb at the groove of the frog of the bow and your pinkie finger at the top of the end of the bow. If you are able to balance the violin bow using only your thumb and your pinkie finger, you are half way there.

Next, close your second, third and fourth finger around the bow. You are now ready to bow your violin.

Third: use a violin shoulder rest

It is essential to use a violin shoulder rest so that your neck does not cramp up when you play the violin. Good violin shoulder rests include FOM and Wolf brand violin shoulder rest. There are different type of shoulder rests for people with longer neck so ensure you pick one that suits you.

After you purchase your violin shoulder rest, fix it to the base of your violin. You should be able to balance the violin between your chin and collarbone if positioned correctly.

Fourth tip: hold the violin correctly

As a beginner, you need to be able to hold the violin correctly. Using your left hand, position the neck of the violin at the crook between your thumb and second finger. Do not worry about knowing how to finger the strings to product the right notes yet as here, I am guiding you to bow your violin properly.

Fifth tip: bow your violin

Finally, bow your violin right in the centre between the bridge and finger board. Play a long up bow on one string, followed by a long down bow on the next string. Move your arm straight up and down when you bow.