home page
group lessons and classes
adult amateur string orchestra
workshops and other music classes
music books and cds for string players
teachers and schools
students area
about stringschool.com
violin, viola, cello and bass lessons in nyc, new york city and beyond

students' area : song of the wind

Anchors away! Did you know your first finger can be an "anchor"? When hopping the 3rd finger between the A and E strings, play 1st and then KEEP IT DOWN while you're playing the hopping 3rd fingers, or "anchor" it, that way after you're done playing the 3rd fingers you can return to it and it's already set up and ready to play!

In Song of the Wind, try to see where there are fingering similarities in this song and Lightly Row, it'll help you learn it faster. Also there are a few new techniques in Song of the Wind, "Resetting" the bow, or picking it up and doing a circle with the bow hand, placing the bow back on the string from above. Remember when resetting that the bow should stay somewhat above the strings at all times, and be careful not to let the bow drift over the fingerboard when nearing the tip. The other new technique is "Anchoring" your first finger, or leaving it down while you do this phrase: 1e 3a 3e 1e 0e-, only release the first finger when you get to open E. Song of the Wind should be played in the middle to upper half of the bow with somewhat shorter strokes. This piece will eventually go faster!

Try to keep your shoulders down and relaxed, and also if you're having to scrunch up your shoulder to hold the violin, consider adjusting your shoulder rest so that the violin can sit comfortably.

Keep fingers on the bow and violin soft, not gripping, think of your bow hand as a guiding your bow, the bow will almost play the violin by itself if properly guided through the stroke.

preparation / review

A Major Scale, Twinkle, Practice Tips

warm up

* Resetting the bow: pick up the bow and with a circular motion return the bow to the lower half or just below the middle so that you can start with another down bow.

Using your shoulder to switch strings and change levels, try this exercise without making sound:
place the bow on the A string, then roll the bow to the
E String, roll the bow to the
A String, roll to
D, roll to
A, roll to
E, roll to
A, roll over to
G, roll to
D, and back to

Preparation Open Strings:
0e 0a 0e 0e 0e- *reset (with a circular motion to just below middle or lower half of bow)
0e 0a 0e 0e 0e- *reset

Make sure that the notes are distinct (that you're not playing more than one note in a bow, or running notes together). After you're comfortable with the bow motion, try it slowly with these fingers:

1e 3a (hop 3rd finger) 3e 1e 0e- *reset
1e 3a (hop 3rd finger) 3e 1e 0e- *reset

Hop, or pick up the 3rd finger, and switch it from the A to E string. Don't forget to "anchor" 1st finger! Gradually increase the speed.


Some notes have been bolded to show where the stronger beats are.

Fingering Key

0a 1a 2a 3a 0e 0e 0e 0e 1e 3a 3e 1e 0e- *reset 1e 3a 3e 1e 0e- *reset
0e 3a 3a 3a 3a 2a 2a 2a 2a 1a 1a 1a 0a 2a 0e *QUICK reset, small circle reset
0e 3a 3a 3a 3a 2a 2a 2a 2a 1a 1a 1a 0a- *reset and repeat to beginning

Be sure to memorize this piece and all the pieces we do!

Below is the same song as above, but with notation written by actual notes.

  • "Rs" is to "Reset" the bow, picking up the bow to start it again around the midpoint of the bow.
  • "" is to start the bow with a "Down Bow", a downward motion.
  • What is the curly thing on the left? It is called a "Treble Clef" or "G Clef".
  • What are the pound signs? These symbols are called "Sharps", and in that position, they indicate the "Key Signature". This particular piece is in the key of "A Major".
  • Also, at most places where you are to Reset the bow, this squiggly symbol is called a "Rest" and signifies a moment of silence.
  • At the end of the piece, what are those two dots and lines? This is called a "Repeat" symbol, in this piece, it tells the musician to go back to the beginning of the piece to play it again one more time.