How would you stroke this?

Discussion in 'Orchestral Technique [DB]' started by Garagiste, Jul 8, 2020.


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  1. Garagiste

    Garagiste

    Feb 16, 2013
    Brooklyn, NY
    Here’s something I’m working on. How would you stroke those two F’s? Down bow on A string? Or down bow on D string then sliding up to the octave on G. Or maybe up bow on the A? That feels feels easier than down bow from A string.

    Thanks
     

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  2. I don't know this piece very well, but I'm suspicious of that bow marking. This is the bass line of the movement, and usually the strong beat in a Sarabande is beat 2. In baroque music slurs generally as a rule mark the first note being the most important and each successive note is less important. This bowing would put a lot of emphasis on beats one and three. If you look at the melody line in the piano, you can see an ornamented half note on beat two; I'd argue that this means beat two is the important beat in this moment. Maybe don't do the slur? Again I don't know the piece so well, but that's the approach to a continuo line I would take: What is the rhythmic hierarchy, what is the harmony, when does it change, and when is something unexpected coming?
     
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  3. Garagiste

    Garagiste

    Feb 16, 2013
    Brooklyn, NY
    That’s one possibility. I’m not sure if the slur marking is from Fred Zimmerman or was indicated in the original score by Bach himself. Thanks for your insight about Baroque phrasing. I’m not very knowledgeable about that and just using this book as a way to improve my arco technique. I’ve mostly studied jazz.
     
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  4. Dogfightgiggle

    Dogfightgiggle

    Mar 4, 2020
    I think I would break the slur and take the F’s as separate bows much like the F-Eb in bar 2. I might also play them a little staccato.
     
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  5. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    Definitely the lower F on the D string. The challenge is hitting that high F accurately without any glissando.
     
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  6. Dogfightgiggle

    Dogfightgiggle

    Mar 4, 2020
    I gave the what but not the why in my previous post so I want to add on here.

    When you consider your bowings you might keep a few things in mind:

    1. Baroque music didn’t really include much in the way of style markings so you are free to interpret it as you like.

    2. Zimmerman stuff is great but it’s dated at this point. However, it is valuable to try to understand why he made his decisions.

    3. Before writing in bowings do some prep work and mark the phrases. A very important question to ask yourself is, “What is the pickup note to this phrase?” Don’t be deceived by the bar lines.

    4. When you develop your bowings try to be consistent across like phrases whenever possible. You want to make these sections like cousins.
     
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  7. Good on you! As someone who formerly made their living playing jazz, converting to Classical music was a real challenge. It was so rewarding though, and I don't regret my decision. Baroque music is also wonderful music and full of wonderful people. Keep it up!
     
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  8. Garagiste

    Garagiste

    Feb 16, 2013
    Brooklyn, NY
    Exactly
     
  9. Dogfightgiggle

    Dogfightgiggle

    Mar 4, 2020
    If you break the slur it doesn’t matter if you play the easier octave.

    I would do separate bows on m. 1 beat 1 so that it matches m. 2 beat 2. Likewise m. 5 beat 1. Those are all of the same family.

    M’s. 3 & 4 I’d break the slur after the first 8th note. Retake your bow for m. 4 so that it matches m. 3.

    I would start the whole thing with a down bow so that m’s. 3 & 4 can be played down-up-down // retake // down-up-down.
     
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  10. Garagiste

    Garagiste

    Feb 16, 2013
    Brooklyn, NY
    Thanks for such a thoughtful response.
     
  11. tlhettema

    tlhettema

    Apr 28, 2007
    I would bow:
    First F down 1st finger A-string. Next three notes under one slur up. F with 4th finger G-string
     
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  12. Garagiste

    Garagiste

    Feb 16, 2013
    Brooklyn, NY
    Yeah that’s what I have been doing. Easiest way and sounds good to my ears.
     
  13. THE SAW

    THE SAW

    Sep 14, 2006
    A string, vibrato, connect the octave, practice making the lower note ring into the top. Smooth slur just for the hxll of it, regardless of the authenticity of the bowing.
     
  14. THE SAW

    THE SAW

    Sep 14, 2006
    A string, vibrato, connect the octave, practice making the lower note ring into the top. Smooth slur just for the hxll of it, regardless of the authenticity of the bowing.
     
  15. Primary

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    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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