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Bow Divisions & Rhythms for the Violin

Learn about bow divisions and rhythms for the violin from musician Julie Artzt Becker in this Howcast video.


Now we're going to talk a little bit about bow divisions and rhythms. A good way to demonstrate bow divisions is in a scale. I always put my metronome at sixty when I practice my scales, and I work from a slow tempo up to a faster tempo. But, the metronome always stays at sixty.

First, you start with whole notes which is four counts to sixty, and that's dividing the bow. One, two, three, four. One, two, three, four. So, I'll play a little bit of an A major scale like that.

OK. Now I'm going to show you about doing half notes separate bows. I'm going to divide the bow. One, two. One, two. So the bow's going a little faster.

Now we're going to go to quarter notes, but we're going to slur them so that one note is half a bow and the next note is half a bow.

But if you can see, the bow division is so important. Because if I did not divide that in half and I divided it, you know, the first note three quarters of a bow and then the second note just a quarter of a bow, the sound would be very different. It would sound like this.

Maybe you'll use that kind of a bow speed at some point in bow division, but to really practice your scales and get them the right sound sustained you do definitely need the exact bow division, sort of like math.

Let's go to four notes to a bow. So now you're dividing each note into quarters. One two three four. One two three four.

This is a little example of bow division in your scales. You can use it in all your different scales and, of course, your pieces as well.

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