Studio IV

Violin and viola instruction in Brooklyn, NY.

Studio IV is the violin and viola teaching studio of Erin Ellis in Brooklyn, NY.

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Studio IV Summer Update!

Hi everyone! I've been slacking in the blogosphere, but I promise I'm back now!

Summer lessons are going well. I'm really excited about starting up group classes in September. Stay tuned for dates and location! Remember that group classes are no extra charge. It's a great place to chat with other parents, and for the students to have fun playing their instruments together.

Some other fun news:

-I'm now helping out with the violas for The Corona Youth Music Project in Corona, Queens. It's great fun and I've met some really wonderful people.

-I've also been playing viola with The Classical Musicians' Rehearsal Symphony Orchestra, and played violin for a reading session with The Brooklyn Symphony. I'm very excited for regular rehearsals to resume in September.

-I'll be playing an interactive concert for kids at Caribou Baby in Greenpoint on Sunday, September 7th at 4 PM. Current students, bring your instruments! No pressure to play, but you are welcome to join me.  Invite your friends!

Misc:

-If you need a practice video for something that I haven't already sent, let me know. If I don't already have one, I'll make one for you.

-I broke my foot! It may take me a bit longer than usual to get down the stairs, but I'm coming. I promise!

Enjoy the rest of your summer, and current students and parents, watch your inbox for Fall scheduling announcements.

 

Practice Methods & Focus

A friend of mine posted this article from Lifehacker.com on Facebook a while ago: (http://lifehacker.com/5939374/a-better-way-to-practice

I’d read it a few months ago myself, but not as closely as I read it this time. It’s a great article for anyone who wants to be better at anything, and in a nutshell, stresses being present and mindful in your practice. Read it if you have time! It’s short and well-written.

I too am a violinist. I saw a lot of my own habits in the article, both the good and the bad, and agree with most of what was said.

I’m currently setting weekly goals for my violin and viola practice. This week I focused on left hand dexterity by using my metronome to play passages faster and more accurately. I found that the more thought and deliberation I put into each passage at their slowest metronome marking, the more accurate my intonation and rhythm were once I got to my goal tempo. In contrast, when practicing the etudes at their slowest markings while daydreaming about what was in my crock pot and trying to remember where I’d put some batteries I recently bought, I made nowhere near the progress I’d made earlier when I was truly focusing.

This coming week I’m going to continue working on my left hand dexterity in my violin and viola practice. However, I’m going to practice nothing but focus when it comes to composition. I hope to have something decent to share next week!

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