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Principles of Violin Playing and Teaching Hardcover – July 1, 1999


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Hardcover, July 1, 1999
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Presents Galamian's philosophy of teaching and practice methods as he wrote them and used them to produce astonishing results with students. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Shar Products Co; 3 edition (July 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0962141631
  • ISBN-13: 978-0962141638
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 8.5 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,408,725 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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69 of 70 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Bonds VINE VOICE on November 20, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Ivan Galamian (1903-1981) was one of the great violin teachers of the 20th century. He taught people like Perlman and Zukerman, as well as countless other professional players of today. This book sets forth the essentials of his method. The text was written by Elizabeth Green, herself a Galamian student and a noted author and teacher in her own right. But the ideas are Galamian's. The small number of pages (100+) is deceptive; every sentence is packed with information and must be read carefully lest some important feature be missed. Violin playing is a complex mental and physical activity, and to learn it well demands the ability to focus on many small details as one trains the ear and the hands. This book is not really intended to be a self-tutor so much as a reference for the teacher and the student who is advanced enough to understand what Galamian is saying. It is not for beginners. A beginner book might tell you where (approximately) to put your fingers on the string to get certain notes. This book tells you (in words and photos) what your finger looks like when it is on the string, what part of the fingertip is pressing on the string, how hard it is pressing, how fast it should be traveling as it hits the string, the musical effect of different methods of lifting the finger, and so on. And that's only a tiny bit of what is written about what the left hand and fingers do. This is followed by a complete analysis of the mechanics and musical effect of every conceivable bow stroke. Matters of bow speed, pressure and point of contact with the string are all considered in light of the effects they produce, along with many more ideas concerning placement of thumb and fingers on the stick, angle of bow to string, and more. The book concludes with an analysis of effective practicing and teaching.Read more ›
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Cheryl Campbell on October 13, 2002
Format: Hardcover
As a former violin student of 9 years who moved towards piano instead, I have found this book immensely valuable in helping me as a Suzuki parent of a young violinist myself. If you have a child moving into the Kreutzer etudes, or in Book 7 or later in the Suzuki series, this book is a godsend. At this point in your child's studies, you have no doubt been listening to many great artists, and wondering how they attain the immense variety in tonal coloring, or how they actually implement such amazing shifts, or complex bowing techniques. This book, with its pictures, is outstanding in deconstructing these motions. While it is highly analytical in parts, the book is also excellent in addressing the body's motion as a whole - in showing the coupling between the hand, elbow, shoulders, violin... using well known extracts from etudes, caprices, and solo works as practical examples.
It most definitely helps to be an advanced instrumentalist in reading this book, as the author certainly presumes that the reader has a trained ear. The sections on how to practice will also be appreciated by those who have worked in intensive Master Classes, and have carried back from these classes some improved practice habits.
All-in-all, this is book not to be missed, particularly by the supportive parents of maturing artists.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Yury Shubov on January 31, 2001
Format: Hardcover
From the first few words in the introductory portion of this book you start to remember everything that was wrong with the approach of your past teachers. I once spoke about Galamian's teaching methods with one of his former students. I actually saw the notes that Galamian himself made in a notebook. For years I've wanted to get my hands on those notes again. And now I can.
This book is an "All-you-need-to-know" guide to violin playing and teaching. Every possible detail is mentioned and, what I love best about this book, references are given to etudes to apply them in practice.
Of course, as Galamian himself said, no book can replace a live interaction with a teacher. It can only help with ideas. Well, this book can help anyone find another approach to problems they may have.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By virtuell@cablenet-va.com on January 29, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Except for a few minor points on the anatomy of violin playing, Galamian hits the nail on the head with accurate and detailed instructions on the correct form and use of each type of bow stroke and technique know to man. This book is a must for the serious teacher and student. I have referenced it more than any other work in my violin career.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 4, 2003
Format: Hardcover
this is a MUST for any violinist who is serious about playing the violin. This book has solution to all of the problems that a violinist faces, in addition, this is a great leaning tool, lines from major concertos are used as exemples. again, this book is a must for anyone who's serious about playing the violin or even becoming a concert soloist.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jason Stidd on March 16, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I would recommend this book to any musician. Although it extensively covers bowing and left hand technique, the most important aspects are in how to practice and master your art. The variations suggested can be used by any musician on any instrument and will take you to a new level of technical control.

I would not suggest this book for a beginner, this material is best learned from an experienced teacher. Advanced students and teachers should all have this book in their book collections.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Haw-Bin Chai on July 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
After seeing the positive reviews on this book, I decided to go ahead and get it, as I realized despite my having played viola for such a long time, I don't own a single tome detailing the principles of good technique and playing.

So far I've gone through sections dealing with left hand positioning (the frame) and intonation. The writing is clear and engaging; Galamian observes many times it is important not to lay down arbitrary rules on how things should be done - unless there is a compelling reason. I like how the sections contain exercises that are written out - the provide a concrete method to achieve the results he discusses. The photos of hand positioning are also very descriptive.

I can tell I'm going to refer to this book again and again in the coming years - it is so nice to have it reinforce what I've heard (and often forget!) from different teachers! Definitely recommended!

I'd like to add that I found this book for about $20 less at Shar Music - but at any of these prices it's completely worth it!
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