Tag Archives: violin

The Chaconne Obsession

I don’t even play violin and I am obsessed with this piece of music. I wonder if it would work on double bass?

I have sought this piece out every chance I could get, ever since hearing Alexander Barantschik of the San Francisco Symphony perform it at a private event many years back. This is the most enigmatic and heartwrenching thing Bach ever wrote.

The Chaconne is the last movement from Bach’s Violin Partita No. in D Minor. The story is that Bach wrote this in memory of his wife who had recently passed away, and whether this is true or not you can hear a fair amount of sorrow, longing, and pain in this music – qualities Bach is not typically known for.

More about this work from an interview with Arnold Stenhardt on NPR.

Reverse Psychology

This is how I get Max to practice:

Get my bass and his violin out. Ask Max to help me learn his pieces on the bass (i.e. Suzuki book 1, ABCs of Violin, Fiddle Magic, etc…) Play the piece he’s working on and ask him to point out any mistakes. Intentionally make many mistakes. He points ’em out, with much giggling. Ask him to play it for me so I can hear it. And voilà – he’s playing it just fine. Repeat, simply making mistakes where he needs to work on it.

Bonus points: I get to work on my thumb position technique and treble clef reading at the same time.