Interesting Questions, Facts, and Information
|Every four years, the Queen Elizabeth Music Competition is devoted to the violin. This is one of the most prestigious competitions in the world. Where is it held?||Strings and Things
Belgium. The other categories, aside from violin, are piano, singing and composition. The first prize is 20,000 euro, a CD recording and several concerts.
68. The official numbering lists 68. More were attributed to him but some of them have been labelled "spurious" after more research.
bass. Because this instrument is so large, tuning in fifths would result in too big of a distance for the fingers. You would not be able to grasp all the required notes within one finger position. So in order to be able to play a scale, without having to change positions, a bass is tuned in fourths.
|What is a well-known nickname for the famous violinist Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840)?||Strings and Things
Devil's violinist. This springs from a legend, cultivated by Paganini himself, that he had sold his soul to the devil in exchange for a fearsomely perfect technique. His "caprices" and concertos are generally regarded as the most difficult in the violin repertoire.
right hand (most often) and left hand. Most pizzicatos are played by one of the right hand's fingers while holding the bow simultaneously. The bow can be put down in a long pizzicato passage. This is indicated by the abbreviation "pizz". However, left hand pizzicato is also possible. This is usually indicated by a cross above the note.
|What do you have to do when you encounter the indication "pizz" on a score?||Strings and Things
pluck the strings. It is an abbreviation of the Italian term "pizzicato".
Using the wood of the bow to "beat" the strings is called "coll'legno".
Daniel Barenboim. Barenboim (1942-) is an Argentinian-Israeli pianist and conductor.
Menuhin (1916-1999)was an American violinist and conductor, celebrated also for his teaching methods.
Kremer (1947-) is a Latvian violinist and conductor, mostly recorded by Deutsche Grammophon.
Oistrakh (1908-1974) is a Jewish Soviet violinist who won the 1937 Queen Elizabeth competition. He's the father of violinist Igor Oistrakh (1931-).
violin - violin - viola - cello. The usual form is a first violin, second violin, viola and cello. If composers want something else, it should be indicated.
|Who is most famously known for building string instruments (especially violins)?||Strings and Things
Antonio Stradivari. There are still about 540 playable "Strads" left.
Niccolò Amati (1596-1684) was Antonio Stradivari's (1644-1737) teacher.
Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840) was a violinist and composer.
Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957) was a conductor.
|How many strings do the following instruments have: violin, viola, cello, bass?||Strings and Things
4. All of these have four strings but only the ones of viola and cello are tuned to the same pitches. The others are tuned higher (violin) or lower (bass).
G, D, A. All string instrment have four strings. Violins and Basses have the G,D,A and E strings, while Violas and Cellos have the C,G,D and A strings.
horse hair. The bow can be used to play in two different ways. The most common way is with the hair against the strings. On rare occasions you can also use the stick against the strings.
Cello. The Cello is played sitting down. This instrument has an endpin that adjusts to the Cellist's height. Basses also have endpins.
Treble. Violas and Cellos can also read this clef, depending on the piece of music being performed.
five. Violins are usually split up into two sections: Violin I and Violin II.
Violin. Einstein played the violin.
Bass. The Bass is usually played standing up, but sometimes the Bassist sits on a stool.
four. They are the Violin, the Viola, the Cello, and the Bass. The Harp, as beautiful as it sounds, is rarely found in a typical orchestra. They can be found in at least some professional orchestra.