Learning to Play Violin

Remembering the early days of their learning to play violin, professional violinists easily recall all the wrong reasons they started learning to make music from the fickle four-stringed box and how that transformed into a genuine love of the instrument.

Your mother is making you do it

In the car on the way to your first violin lesson, everyone will allow that you are foregoing hockey practice for the sake of making your mother happy. During your first violin lesson, you meekly will submit to your teacher’s direction, because you know that making the instructor happy will make your mother happy; translation-you hit your favorite drive-through on the way home. By the end of your first violin lesson, however, you should feel just annoyed and frustrated enough that you want to dominate the vile instrument just because you can. We have many more Learn the Violin Articles Now Available.

During your first week of practice, you should begin to feel the potential in the instrument and bow, feeling the first promptings of desire to know and love it. By the end of your second lesson, you should simply be into it for as long as it will take, and the team will have to put-in the second-string goalie on Thursday afternoons.

Somebody thought it might be good for you

Yeah, and your grandmother imagined that a good dose of castor oil might be just what the doctor ordered for you, too. Learning to produce music and joy from the violin is decidedly as good for you as eating your broccoli and mastering your catechism, because it stimulates the right hemisphere of your brain-the part you seldom use in anything academic or professional. Building your dexterity, your hand-eye coordination, and your capacity for listening intently and appreciating every little vibration on every frequency, learning to play violin yields far more benefit than certifying you to play “Mary Had a Little Lamb” for any occasion. Grandma said you could drench your vegetables in maple syrup if the sweetness would help you eat them; you similarly can drench your violin lessons in all your favorite tunes. Eventually, though, you should acquire a taste and then a preference and then a passion for them, feeling that, yes, they were good for you after all.

Your crush plays the cello

In music, love is good. Almost all of your favorite songs probably deal with the beginnings of, the highlights of, or the heartbreaking betrayal of love. Some songwriters would crawl out a limb, hazarding, “No Love. No music.” But if you are carting the case, tuning the B-D-A-E and squawking out the notes for the sake of impressing Lori, captain of the junior varsity cheerleaders and cellist par excellence, just go back to hockey practice. Learning to play the violin, you should fall in love…with your instrument. Nothing powers a good vibrato more than the surging energy of new romance, and every time you pick-up and cradle your violin, you should fall in love all over again…with your instrument. Whether or not Lori and the other Junior Varsity cheerleaders ever acknowledge your existence, if learning to play the violin does not make your heart ache and throb, you should give up the instrument and use the case for carrying your pucks. We have many more Learn the Violin Articles Now Available.