Thursday, July 28, 2011

Recording Your Practice

I recently submitted a video to for Beth to check up on and it made me realize something that I want to share to those who are just starting in playing the violin - the importance of recording your practice sessions.  

The thing you'll appreciate most, once you get past the discomfort of "performing" for a virtual audience, is that you'll be able to do your own self-assessment.  The first thing you'll notice will be your bow arm.  Is it doing the right motion you thought it is should be?  Where is your sounding point?  Is it towards the bridge or towards the fingerboard? Is your bowing straight and on just one sweet spot, or is it skirting across the strings like a snake on hot sand? You'll be able to realize which string you're having difficulty in bowing so you can make changes in your own practice line-up.  Let's admit it: when taking violin lessons at home by yourself, it's difficult to know if you are indeed right where you think you should be.  

Violinists admit that what they hear as they play is not exactly what the audience appreciate while they listen. You may think that you're doing your notes wrong, when the audience 6-10 feet away hear only great music.  Or you may hear that you're hitting the right notes, but the recording tells a different story.  Are your fingers spot on at the finger board, or do you need some adjustments?  If you do not wish to disturb your any of your family members, be your own judge on your intonation and listen to your own recording after you practice.

Needless to say, it can be uncomfortable especially for those who are not used to seeing themselves on screen.  But once you have mustered the courage to tape yourself, you'll be glad that you did.  

Do you record your practice sessions?  Feel free to  share your own ideas on how you've progressed on your violin lessons through your own recordings. ;)

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