What is the course about?
This online course will help you improve your technique and listening skills to play pieces and technical work to around ABRSM Grade 6 standard. We will be covering a wide range of repertoire based around the Grade 6 Syllabus, as well as relevant scales/arpeggios and other technical exercises.
This is a live online course. For more information please see our guide to online learning.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
Bow control and distribution, along with good posture to improve sound quality.
Developing confidence in a variety of bowing techniques and different types of articulation.
Consistency in use of the left hand for good intonation.
Playing in a wider variety of positions including 5th and beyond. Developing confidence moving between these.
Playing a varied selection of repertoire to enhance grasp of style.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
Change between a wider variety of positions confidently and securely.
Understand how to select good fingering.
Use vibrato tastefully to create a warmer tone.
Use the bow effectively for a consistent quality of sound and a variety of articulations.
Play with sensitivity to different styles.
Play solo and in ensemble with confidence.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This course is suitable for those who have been playing for around 5 years and who are at Grade 5 standard or above.
You should have a secure basic technique and be fluent playing and reading music in 1st and 3rd positions, as well as having some knowledge of 2nd, 4th and 5th positions. You will need to follow written and verbal instructions in English and engage in class discussions.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
The tutor will direct the group, playing along with the whole class (either with the students' line or an
accompaniment) or listening to individuals play. We discuss technical points and try them out either as a group or individually. You will benefit most if you can practise and play at home 4 or 5 times a week for at least 50 minutes.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Please bring your own violin or viola kit. Also bring pen, pencil, eraser, notepad and manuscript paper. A folder for
handouts and your notes is also useful. We will use up to 3 textbooks during the year costing £5 to £15 each; the
tutor will advise what these are at the first session. These will be used throughout the year. The tutor will also provide handouts from time to time.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You may take this course for as many terms as you wish, to consolidate your technique, develop your
musicianship, and increase knowledge of repertoire and style. There are opportunities for developing ensemble skills
further in Chamber music (1, 2, advanced), Orchestra workshop, String Winter / Easter / Summer schools.
You may wish to support your learning through a focus on reading, writing and hearing music and musical patterns.
For more details about musicianship and music theory please visit our blog:
music theory at City lit which lists our full sequence of musicianship and music theory classes.
To find out more about music history classes and to read our year-long selection of courses, please see the blog
history: your guide to the 2019/20 programme which lists our full programme of classes ordered by term, and
by day of the week. You may then click on each title to read the full course outline.