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Performance and Pedagogy Blog

A blog about the performance and pedagogy of music.

Filtering by Tag: Violin

Heifetz on Practicing, Technical Mastery, and Programing

Andrew Hitz


This quote is taken from a 1919 interview with violin great Jascha Heifetz where he touches on a wide range of very important topics including not practicing too much, developing technical mastery on your instrument, and programming while keeping the audience in mind.

There are about 20 quotes I could pull from the interview to highlight but here's another that I really liked:

“Violin Mastery? To me it means the ability to make the violin a perfectly controlled instrument guided by the skill and intelligence of the artist, to compel it to respond in movement to his every wish. The artist must always be superior to his instrument, it must be his servant, one that he can do with what he will."

William Preucil: Monday YouTube Fix

Andrew Hitz

I recently attended a brass masterclass where the teacher asked the students how many of them were familiar with William Preucil.  I was horrified when only two hands went up and one of them was mine.

Preucil has been the concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra since 1989 and has a long resume as both a soloist and chamber musician.  He is the highest paid concertmaster in the world.  Listen to this clip and you will see why.  He sure makes that thing look easy to play.

This is a clip of him performing the Beethoven Violin Sonata in A Minor, Opus 23, at the Brevard Music Center on July 5, 2010.  He is accompanied by Bruce Murray on piano.


Itzhak Perlman: Monday YouTube Fix

Andrew Hitz

Here is a clip of violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman performing live in Russia in 1991.  The pianist is Janet Goodman Googenheim.  The program is quite varied and shows off his incredible musicianship well:

1:25 / TARTINI "Devil's Trill Sonata" in G minor (12:25 Cadenza: KREISLER)
16:50 / KREISLER "Liebesleid"
20:20 / PROKOFIEV "March", from "The Love for Three Oranges" Op.33
22:18 / BLOCH "Nigun", No.2 from "Baal-Shem"
29:15 / WIENIAWSKI "Etude Caprice" Op.18, No.4 (arr. KREISLER)
31:40 / TCHAIKOVSKY "Andante cantabile", 2nd mov. String Quartet No.1 Op.11
36:50 / BAZZINI "La Ronde des Lutins" Scherzo fantastico Op.25

Every time I listen to him play the violin my phrasing is better the next time I pick up my horn, even if I'm warming up.  He is a force in the musical world that we are lucky to have.