Absolute Beginners Class

Thursday 29th March

We spent the evening working on Chicken Feet, and looked at how to add dynamic into the notes, and play the tune so it flowed.

Thursday 22nd March

The class learnt the tune ‘Chicken Feet’

Thursday 15th March

Tonight we learnt the first part of the the tune Auld Lang Syne. We also played through the notes in the scale of D, focusing on tuning

Thursday 8th March

In tonight’s class we played around with the D scale, and tried playing it as a round – half the class started the scale, and the second half of the class started playing the scale when the first group were playing the F# (second finger on the D). At the end of the night we split the 2 groups up, and alternated around the circle, so each person had someone either side of them who was playing different notes. We tried playing while focusing in the overall sound of the group playing together

Thursday 1st March

Tonight we played through The Fairy Lullaby

Thursday 22nd February
Tonight we played through the D scale a few times. We each focused on the sound we were making as we played, and tried to identify any problems we could hear. This is a useful skill to apply to any practice playing – being able to approach practice analytically will help you to learn to hear problems, and work out possible solutions to help you create the sound you want to make.

We learnt the tune ‘The Fairy Lullaby’ by ear.

We also worked on bowing – particularly exploring ways we can change the volume of the bow stroke:

Makes the note louder Makes the note quieter
Move the bow fast Move the bow slowly
Play with the bow close to the bridge Play with the bow close to the fingerboard
Play close to the heel of the bow Play close to the tip of the bow
Add the weight of the arm to the bow Take some of the weight of the bow into the hand

Thursday 15th February
Mid-term break

Thursday 8th February
Tonight we worked on keeping the bow perpendicular to the strings throughout the bow stroke. We also played the D scale, and then looked at how to transfer the weight of the arm into the bow, to help the bow hair to really connect with the fiddle string at the start of the note.

We also looked at how to let the weight of the arm transfer into the bow, which can help create a good connection between the bow hair and the string

After the mid-term break we’ll learn the tune ‘The Fairy Lullaby’

Thursday 1st February
Tonight we looked at how to tune the fiddle using the fine adjusters. Click on the link to find out more about how to tune your fiddle.

We tried out playing the notes in the scale of D, starting on the open D string.  Find out more about scales and how to find the correct finger positions for the scale of D.

We also learnt an accompanying riff to play with the tune Loch Ruan, a Fun Fiddle favourite. We revisited the bow hold, and fiddle hold, and spent some time working on playing this  riff in time with one another in the group.

Thursday 25th January

We spent some more time going over the bow hold, and how to move the bow and keep it perpendicular to the fiddle strings throughout the length of the bow stroke.

We also played open Ds, working on keeping a steady tempo with the notes, and playing in time with each other.

Thursday 18th January

In our first absolute beginners fiddle class this term we looked at the bow hold and how to hold the fiddle.

Bow hold for fiddle players
How to hold the fiddle bow
Photo ©Ros Gasson

We also tried out playing the open strings, using the full length of the the bow to play each note, and working on keeping the bow perpendicular to the fiddle strings throughout the length of the bow stroke.