Left Hand

Articles and videos to help improve all aspects of left-hand technique, from mastering fast passages with evenness and clarity, to building finer strength and flexibility, and achieving confident chords and double stops.

Latest Left Hand

RayChenLHPizzicato1

Violinist Ray Chen gives left-hand pizzicato lesson

2022-01-01T00:00:00+00:00

Don't cut the nails on your left hand too short. This will help with catching the string - unless you have calluses made of iron!'

fourth

Playing with a relaxed fourth finger by violinist Ros Stephen

2022-01-01T00:00:00+00:00

Ros Stephen, author of the Oxford University Press Globetrotters series and Violinworks method books, gives exercises and advice to help string players reach fourth finger notes without straining

Flexibility

zb

Left-hand agility in Dont Etude op.35 no.8

2021-07-29T12:00:00+01:00

In this extract from the May 1999 issue, violinist Zakhar Bron shares tips on hand shape and intonation when playing thirds in Dont Etude op.35 no.8

Strength

fourth

5 ways to build fourth finger strength

2021-06-22T11:08:00+01:00

Tips from The Strad’s archive on avoiding a weak, collapsing left-hand little finger

Warming up

2305_aginghands

‘Maximum exposure’ and injury prevention: the basics

2021-04-28T16:14:00+01:00

In an article from our archive, former Minnesota Orchestra principal cellist Janet Horvath introduces a concept that might help you play better for longer

Fast Passages

Fast passages

7 tips for playing fast passages for string players

2020-05-14T11:10:00+01:00

Guidance from The Strad’s archive on increasing left-hand finger speed and minimising tension

Trills

39087009901754vol-228x228

Trills and embellishments: exercises from Wilhelmj and Brown’s A Modern School for Violin

2021-10-05T15:00:00+01:00

Violist Misha Galaganov recommends exercises from August Wilhelmj and James Brown’s out-of-print A Modern School for Violin,  to accompany his Technique  article in the October 2021 issue

Chords and Double Stops

zb

Left-hand agility in Dont Etude op.35 no.8

2021-07-29T12:00:00+01:00

In this extract from the May 1999 issue, violinist Zakhar Bron shares tips on hand shape and intonation when playing thirds in Dont Etude op.35 no.8

Harmonics

VivianeHagner

Technique: Artificial harmonics

2020-09-20T02:41:00+01:00

How to use this less-common technique to improve harmonics, hand frame, intonation and bow control