I am still trekking along on my journey back to the violin lifestyle. Today I hit a very special place in my violin advancement. Somehow I regained my musical perspective. Something just clicked and I found fluidity in my bow arm, intonation in my left hand and the glories of proper phrasing. I am currently playing the Giga of Bach's 3rd Partita. I will eventually go back to the Preludio, which is exciting and very fun to play. I am taking it one measure at a time, working in smaller chunks of measures per day. This might not seem like much, but I am in essence, choreographing each phrase, sculpting every element of the passage.
Knowing which notes to play short on an up bow and long on the down bow...Knowing when to crescendo over the full measure or in short bursts over groups of 16th notes. I have regained this perspective. The ability to see the shape and form surrounding the sound that I create. This is as important as the intonation. I have been working the past few weeks on some various scale exercises and technical etudes in hopes to train myself a little bit before working on a piece. Of course I will continue my technical practice, but I have now added in some actual music to play. I feel like I've earned it now. Also, I am excited to begin recording my practice sessions. Little excerpts here and there.
It has been a very long road for me and my violin. I've been studying the craft for 17 years. My parents have sacrificed a lot over my lifetime in order to provide me with some of the finest instructors and musical experiences. I majored in violin performance in college. It's just something I need to do, if not for anyone else, for myself. It is very hard to jump back in once you've stopped playing for a few years. I would say it is the equivalent to being on the football team in college, going cold for several years, then expecting yourself to jump right back in at the same physical level you used to be at. Yes, your mind may be there, but your actual physical skill may not match. That can take a toll on your confidence, as it has mine, but as with most things in my life, I continue to push forward, depsite how many times I stop. If you have stopped doing something you were once good at or once loved, push through and begin again. It feels great. It is reviving.