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Pedagogical Content Knowledge for Vibrato: More than a Toolbox of Tricks
By Karin Hendricks and Diane Grieser
How many workshops or clinics have you attended in the hope that you would walk away with a toolbox of tricks to teach vibrato to your students? In addition to workshops and clinics, a simple Internet search for teaching vibrato on a stringed instrument will display numerous vibrato videos and tricks that can be added to your vibrato-teaching toolbox. However, to be effective, tricks and exercises for teaching vibrato require a solid foundation of content knowledge, or the basic understanding of skills and principles of vibrato technique.
Structuring an Effective Chamber Music Class
By Paul Trapkus
String teachers know from experience how beneficial it can be to play chamber music. With the right environment and the right group of people, chamber music provides a powerful opportunity to isolate some of the most important musical skills that we strive to teach in orchestra classes, like listening, leading, following, and building musical interpretations. It also goes beyond these important abilities by developing small-group skills like communication, time management, empathy, and awareness.
Success on Your Secondary Instrument: Reciprocal Exercises for Switching Between the Violin and Viola
Part I—A Violinist on the Viola: The Right Hand
By Kevin Nordstrom and Stephen Nordstrom
It has become increasingly common in today’s music industry for violinists to double as violists and violists as violinists. This duality occurs mostly with private teachers and professional performers, but also is quite common with students of all ages. There are many practical reasons why this is so, chief among them being that those able to play a secondary instrument are more versatile as teachers and performers. This then allows them to profit to a greater extent from their music making. But players who are interchangeable on the violin and viola often assume that a generalized technique can be used on both instruments without paying close attention to their subtle technical differences.
An Interview with Darol Anger
By Bob Phillips
Darol Anger is one of the most influential fiddle/violinists of the past forty years. He helped define what “groove” playing is on bowed stringed instruments. His has influenced countless young players during his amazing playing and teaching career. We knew of each other for years through mutual musical friends, but I got to know him well starting in 2003 at the first stand-alone ASTA National Conference in Columbus, Ohio. He has truly changed how we think about bowed string music and is a national artistic treasure.
From Sticks to Strings: One Percussionist’s Interpretation and Journey into the World of String Pedagogy
By David Schurger
When I started my masters in instrumental conducting, I was asked to start an orchestra. I jumped at the opportunity without any true understanding of the immense tonal possibilities deep within the stringed instruments. I was in over my head, but I loved the immense tonal colors and got excited that the bow acted just like a drumstick with hair. This article is aimed toward providing a different perspective for the non-string player making the transition to the string classroom.