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Violin Lessons: Deck the Halls

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Here for Deck The Halls which is an easy
tune, I've chosen a key that's a slightly
difficult one for which to find a
And you run into this from time to time.
Actually, more and more often the more
advanced music you play.
So, you need to be able to maneuver around
the instrument even when it's not so
And so we play this tune in two different
octaves in the key of E flat.
And I'm going to be reaching in between
I'm going to be moving a lot between third
and second position via reaching.
And when I do that, I wanna be very
certain of the order in which I do things.
So I wanna reach and then let the hand
catch up.
And if I'm shifting, I do it all at once.
So I wanna know where those places are.
When you're reaching and shifting,
you'd like to avoid doing it during fast
In other words, we have a rhythm.
It wouldn't make much
sense to shift
During that quick change of note, that
quick rhythm.
And so when you're planning your
that's the kind of thing you take into
as well as how the fingering is going to
affect string crossings.
Because it's also a little bit more
difficult to cross during
a quick change of note, like.
I don't know why you'd start this in
fourth position, but if you did, you'd be
crossing right there.
So that would be,
not the optimum fingering.
There are always going to be comprises,
sometimes you just have to do
uncomfortable string crossings and
uncomfortable shifts.
But when you can, you like to plan things
so that they lie well, and
that's what I've tried to do for you here
with this set of fingerings.
Here's a reach.
then the hand moves back to stay in second
Reach back.
So those reaches are there
to avoid just the kind of string crossings
that I was talking about before.
Now, if you'll look at letter C, as is
often the case in these flat keys,
the even positions are your friends.
So here we are in fourth.
And I don't wanna cross
over just for one note.
So I just shift a half step down to third.
And now back to fourth during the rest.
And now since we're in the nice
healthy dynamic, I'd like to go down to
position to E string for a nice ringing
And let's shift up to fourth position,
so we're going from first to fourth.
Leave the first and
second fingers down while you shift of
because that'll provide your frame.
Now, sometimes for a shift like this from
first to fourth position, people say well,
you know, that's shifting three positions.
You know, I've really gotta, really gotta
get it exact.
Yes you want an exact shift that's in
But it's almost always more useful to
think of your ear doing the work.
In other words, you know the notes that
you want to play, so
you can play them even in a different
Just to hear it cleanly,
nice and easy.
With that fingering in second position,
there's no shift.
Now, you can play the fingering that you
intend to play.
So, it helps that I've done shifts like
that thousands of times, which you will
eventually too,
but I'm not thinking of the shift.
I'm simply hearing the note that I heard
when I wasn't shifting.
I want it to sound just the same.
If it doesn't, if I shift and
it's out of tune, no big deal.
This is practice so I get unlimited tries.
But, the last thing I want is to
start getting tense because I'm trying to
shift a certain distance.
That almost never gets you the consist,
the consistent results that you want.
So, you can think about your guide finger.
Or you could think about an imaginary
fourth finger if you kept that down.
Whatever's going to help you measure that
distance from first to fourth position.
But in the end, like I say, your ear is
the most important tool.
Whatever gets the hand to the note that
you want to play,
that's going to be the right shifting
And finally, two bars before the end,
we've been in first position.
May seem a strange place to shift, but
right here onto this E flat just go up one
And then you can end as this
is a piece in a flat key ending in
second position which is great.
I love second.