‘The Strad’ magazine 4th-finger article: two additional studies

These studies accompany the article “Using the 4th-finger without tension” published in the February 2017 edition of ‘The Strad’ magazine (click on the links below to view the PDFs). To order a copy of the magazine please visit The Strad website.

4th-finger unaccompanied study

4th-finger study (PDF)

Pizzicato Ping-Pong (from Chapter 8 of Violinworks Book 1)

Pizzicato ping-pong (PDF)

The aim of this study is to practise keeping the 4th-finger over the strings (click here for a demonstration video):

  • Play the left-hand pizzicato notes gently, keeping the 4th-finger curved and relaxed.
  • Gently swing your elbow under the violin to transport the hand between the G and E strings (swing it to the right to reach the G-string and to the left to reach the E-string).
  • As you move your elbow, your relaxed left-hand should pivot effortlessly about the neck of the violin so that your forearm, wrist and hand always form a straight line when viewed from the scroll, whichever string you’re on.

Play-along backing track for Pizzicato Ping Pong: