FOCUS

Ariane Todes selects her favourite stories and interviews from The Strad website and beyond

Focus Thursday, 17 April 2014

Rules for successful buskers

Summer provides the richest time for musicians to make money from impromptu outdoor performance. Experienced buskers tell David Kettle how they go about it, and why the rewards can be greater than you might expect

If you pass someone playing a stringed instrument for money in the street, or in a station, what’s your reaction? Do you think, ‘Poor guy – he’s obviously not good enough to ...

Focus Wednesday, 16 April 2014

How to memorise music for performance

With the right concepts and skills, any musician can successfully learn music by heart, as Gerald Klickstein explains

Is memorising worth the effort? For most musicians, it probably is. Not only do performers report feeling greater artistic freedom when playing from memory, but audiences also prefer memorised solos...

Focus Wednesday, 09 April 2014

6 tips for launching a music career after graduation

As hundreds of young string players leave college in a few months, music careers expert Angela Myles Beeching hands on advice for life after graduation

In a rapidly changing profession, unemployment and the difficult economy are always on people’s minds, yet with change in the marketplace comes new opportunities. Today’s emerging string...

Focus Thursday, 03 April 2014

Ask the Experts: how to guarantee a violin's resaleability

Strad readers submit their problems and queries about string playing, teaching or making to a panel of experts

In the fourth of the series, three instrument dealers discuss a player's concerns about buying a new violin.

Do you have a burning question about string playing, teaching...

Focus Friday, 28 March 2014

Will orchestras be paperless in the future?

Could a symphony orchestra ditch its entire sheet music library in favour of digital scores and tablet computers? The Brussels Philharmonic is setting out to do just that, as David Kettle reports

The Brussels Philharmonic is on a mission: to become the world’s first paperless orchestra. On 7 November 2012 it gave its first concert playing, not from traditional sheet music, but from tablet...

Focus Thursday, 27 March 2014

Russian cellist Karine Georgian remembers Mstislav Rostropovich

An intense seven-year period of study at the Moscow Conservatoire was hugely influential

After my father, my main influence was Mstislav Rostropovich, with whom I studied for seven years. When I first came to play to him I brought Prokofiev’s Symphony–Concerto...

Focus Wednesday, 26 March 2014

How a broken thumb solved a more serious health issue, by cellist Colin Carr

The international cello soloist and chamber musician describes how a cycling accident forced him to rethink the way he played

When did you first experience discomfort when playing the cello?

The problem started in my teenage years: I felt pain spreading from my right thumb, up my arm, and into the shoulder...

Focus Friday, 21 March 2014

Violist Lesley Robertson on taking the plunge with laser eye surgery

In this Health Matters article from The Strad, June 2009, the St Lawrence Quartet player describes the process of having her eyes lasered

What made you decide to have laser eye surgery?

A friend had very good results when she’d had it done eight or nine years previously. I began to think about it more and...

Focus Thursday, 20 March 2014

How to teach adult string students

Teaching adults need not be a daunting prospect. For Alice McVeigh the rewards outweigh the problems, as she reveals in her guide for tutors

Many years ago, having finished music college, I agreed to fill in as interim cello teacher at a girls’ boarding school in Sevenoaks. I was granted an interview with the head teacher, a Maggie...

Focus Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Tackling the difficult topic of student-teacher relationships

Learning a stringed instrument requires an emotional and mental bond between student and teacher, but what happens when the boundaries blur? Hazel Davis investigates

Kirsty* is 27. She is married with two children. She met her husband when she was 17. He was her cello teacher and was 45 at the time. They were both single when they met. Theirs is a happy marriage...

Cookie
serene violin solo pre-1917
Hi folks. For a story I'm writing I'd like suggestions for the most serene and...
Strings
I want to try some new strings on my violin. It's English, 1875, and has quite...
violin left hand position
I have a new student , quite advanced, who has a 'double jointed' left thumb...
Electric violin and bows stolen in London
My friend John Garner's asking for help regarding his electric violin. Please...
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