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Discussion in 'Orchestral Technique [DB]' started by Joe Taylor, May 5, 2003.

  1. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    I have a question for you all.

    When you are reading music do you see a note then think the note name then translate that to press here to get the tone or do you see the note and just put the finger down to get the tone?

    I follow the latter method I think it slows you down to say hay that an "a" and to play it I need to finger this location.

  2. When I start seeing more than three ledger lines or tenor clef, I start thinking note names. Otherwise, I'm pretty much on automatic, especially at faster tempos.
  3. Darth_Linux


    Oct 12, 2002
    Spokane, WA
    the visual triggers a muscle memory shift. In other words, my eye sees whatever note, then my arm reacts by moving to the appropriate place on the neck and my finger pushes down. Many long hours with Simandl have gotten me to this point. I don't think the note name at all, just that I see the note and I move to the right position and my finger does the rest.

  4. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Same as Darth for me. Like reading English (in my case).
  5. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    That is what I thought was the case with most people.

    I was talking with a real hot viola player about this issue and she said that she does both - thinks of the note and has the automatic press here. quick mind I guess.

    On the side she said that she played with Ed Meyer and some cello guy in a trio. She said that once they started playing it was hard to tell who was playing what because Edgar and the cello guy had thumb position down so well. It is amazing who you can run into. I widh I could remember the Cello guy's name or the trio's name.

    Oh, and she is a real person too! My wife signed up to take some lessons from her.

  6. s7on3d


    Jun 26, 2002
    Ra'anana, Israel
    Meyer plays quite a bit with Yo-Yo Ma.... He's probobly the top cellist alive today (IMHO)
  7. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    Not YoYo Ma it was some other guy several years ago.
    Next time I see this lady I'll ask the name of the trio and the cellist's name.

  8. Shlomobaruch


    Dec 31, 2002
    Boise, ID
    Unless I get lost in accidentals, I usually look at the whole phrase rather than individual notes. I just spent the evening sight reading Bach Two Part Inventions w/ the wife (with her playing violin) and there wasn't time to see whether to play an A on the G or D string without looking at the whole phrase. I think it's imperative to look even beyond one note at a time and take whole phrases, and even be able to not lose the momentum when you play a note wrong, which is often more difficult. As musicians in practice rooms and rehearsals we stop when we hit wrong notes, which is good and bad. It's good to fix the note, it's bad because you never learn how to screw up but still keep your place.