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Violin Lessons: Mendelssohn - Symphony #4, 1st Mvt opening - m. 66

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[MUSIC]
Mendelssohn's Sunny Fourth Symphony is
a fun piece to play, and it's a fun
excerpt to play too
although it does have some particular
challenges.
They come from the fact that Mendelssohn's
music is almost always vocal in nature,
you have to sing all the time whether it's
sustained notes or quicker notes, and
you have to sing through the rests.
The beginning of this excerpt, the main
theme.
[MUSIC]
Is made up of a few fragments and
if you're not careful it'll sound like
fragments in performance.
So you need to tie them together.
One method I like to use to practice that
is to actually sustain through the rests.
[MUSIC]
Or in the performance tempo.
[MUSIC]
What that does is it gets my hand and
my arm feeling in the string,
even through the rests.
And it also moderates my bow speed.
When I'm playing this way, you'll notice I
have a pretty consistent bow speed.
[MUSIC]
It may be a little quicker
at the high points, which is as it should
be.
But what happens all too often when you
play this as written with the rests.
The bow speed starts to jump around.
[MUSIC]
You see how now I have really quick notes
and the bow slows way down at the ends of
some fragments and it sounds much
choppier.
So, while I play with the rests,
I want to play in to them with that nice
concentration of sound.
[MUSIC]
And in the fragments that are coming up,
you want to build them as in a phrase, so
that they don't sound ever two the same.
[MUSIC]
Here we have a sudden piano, but
again, it should not come out as just
an accent on the down beat, like.
[MUSIC]
It doesn't need that hard sound at
the beginning.
So from the crescendo leading up into it.
[MUSIC]
So it's simply,
you continue playing forte on the first
note and
then after that, you lighten the bow for
the piano.
The eighth notes the separate eighth notes
that come after that definitely from
the string and you can conduct yourself a
little bit to to feel the empty down beat.
And that's the down beat is the set and
then the release is the first eighth note.
[MUSIC]
And set.
[MUSIC]
One final note, a lot of this,
a lot of the singing in this except take
place on the E string.
That's a common place for a vibrato to get
a little out of control,
and when you combine it with the bow
accents that are all to easy to create
you get an unpleasant sound.
[MUSIC]
So you need to listen to,
to focus that vibrato, to have it only
decorate the sound.
It, it's a very, this is a very open key,
it's a nice ringing key.
You don't need a ton of help from the left
hand,
just a little decoration to, to burnish
the vocal line.
[MUSIC]