If you want to graduate as a violinist, you have to play piano. It is organized this way, because as a player you need to understand harmonics and as a teacher you must be able to accompany your students.
I played piano a lot and I got a very good grade for piano, but I didn’t choose to play piano and hated practicing about 90% of the time. Perhaps I hated it just because I was forced to play this instrument. I tried to convince the conservatory that I could perfectly accompany my students on the violin and that I could play harmonics on the violin by playing double stops (which I wanted to demonstrate by playing the fugue, haha, all frustration!), but it didn’t work and I really had to play piano.
Now I learned it, I reluctantly have to admit that playing the piano has some benefits for my as a violinist.
Before I go into these benefits, I would like to give you a little warning. Some people think that in order to learn the violin you HAVE to play piano or recorder first. They think it’s too difficult to start with violin as your first musical instrument and you need some preparation.
Here’s what I think about this: If you want to play the violin, the very best preparation to that is just to start playing the violin. Don’t take any detours, because it is difficult enough as it is. It’s definitely not true that playing the piano or the recorder is a better preparation to playing the violin than playing the violin
The choice of your instrument, is extremely important to the joy you have in making music. Start on the instrument you prefer right away!
If you coincidently already play the piano or if you like playing the piano and you would do it anyway, it can certainly benefit your violin or viola playing. Keep in mind that playing two totally different instruments is very hard and takes a lot of time to progress on both.
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