The Complete Musician
Violin Book Three
Learning in Violin Book 2 of The Complete Musician is centered around open string do and 3rd finger do keys, creating finger patterns which use high and low second finger.
Book 3 introduces keys formed by finger patterns which use low first finger and high third finger. The new patterns are found by playing familiar pieces with a new finger as do. In this way the discoveries are driven by the educated ear. Relative solmization and moveable do are the tools. Transposition is easily done as students apply melodic structure to new keys. The emphasis is on finger pattern, and so melodies are used which are small in range and singable. The knowledge of pattern expands to the study of keys and key signatures in Book 4 of The Complete Musician.
The only remaining element of the diatonic scale to be learned, ti, is introduced first in its position in the minor scale and la-centered songs before it is used as the leading tone in major tonalities. This learning sequence correlates with the singing musicianship class. It was discovered by Kodaly and his associates that ti was more easily sung in tune when first attempted in a descending minor tone-set. The choice of using this learning sequence has nothing to do with technical requirements of the instrument. Rather, it serves the process of educating the ear.
With the introduction of ti, a new interval is created: that of the diminished fifth (low ti to fa). As students become aware of this interval, the need for changing finger patterns becomes obvious.
Rhythm learning progresses to dotted-eighth and sixteenth note patterns and six-eight meter. These require the use of hooked bowing patterns. Rhythms and bowings continue to become gradually more complex. However, they are presented in their most clear, basic forms.
Some songs are included to give practice in shifting to third position, progressing from earlier shifts in Book 2 which occurred on the open string, to shifts in Book 3 using the same finger and shifts which change finger. While these materials are not intended to be a comprehensive study of shifting, there is enough material to give students experience in shifting in the early stages with simple songs. When it comes time to study shifts in depth, there will not be a fear of the upper positions, and the basics of shifting and position finding will already have been experienced.
With the completion of this book, the violin students will have found all of the notes of the chromatic scale on both the staff and the instrument, and they will be familiar with all of the basic finger patterns. In Book 4 of The Complete Musician, learning and reading key signatures in both major and minor keys is the primary focus. From then on, materials in other methods and literature collections should be completely accessible, for the foundation of tonality and structure of music has been laid and literacy based on hearing has had a proper beginning.
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