A few months ago, I was rooting around my parents place and came across my sister’s violin. I can’t remember the last time my sister played it, but it’s been a while. Anyway, after confirming she had no desire to play it, I carried back to London with me with the intention of learning to play it.
Now, I’m not entirely tone deaf, having been the accompanist on the piano for the Harlington Singers, so at least I should have a fighting chance learning how to play the violin…or so you would think.
Today was my first real lesson. After finding and arriving at the location where my new violin teacher teaches, we spent a while finding out what previous musical experience I had and if any of it would be useful. After ascertaining that some of it would be useful, it came to practicalities. On the piano, to play a note, you wander up to it and you just hit a key. On the violin, you need to tense up the bow, apply stuff to it, tune up the violin, adjust the shoulder rest, get the violin into position, hold the bow just so and then you can play a note. Then there’s actually making a sound by applying bow to string with just the right pressure and angle and drawing it across the string in a smooth consistent motion. By the end of the lesson (about an hour) I’d played two distinct notes. This might be trickier than I thought.