Stefan's Tips

I'm so proud to present "Stefan's Tips," a collection of tips, tricks, techniques and wisdom that I've picked up during my years playing the violin.

Tip #1 - Vibrato

Should you always vibrate every note? In this video, I break down my approach to vibrato with a passage from the second movement of Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto.

Tip #2 - Right Hand Pinky/Bow Control

In this video, I discuss the importance of the right-hand pinky in bow control using an example from the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto.

Tip #3 - Hand Structure

Left hand structure is crucial to shifting, intonation, and sound quality. In this video, I use the Brahms Violin Concerto to demonstrate how to find a hand position that works for you.

Tip #4 - Open Strings

Why and how should you tune to your open strings? I break it down using the opening of the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto.

Tip #5 - Good Contact between Bow Hairs & Strings

In this video, I talk about how to find and maintain good contact and pressure between your bow hairs and the string for the best possible sound quality.

Tip #6 - Nervousness during concerts

What do you do when you're nervous about a concert or audition? In this video, I reflect on the strategies I use to cope with pre-show jitters.

Tip #7 - Backstage Routine

My backstage warmup routine is all about embracing my nerves and finding joy in some of my favorite pieces.

Tip #8 - Managing Multiple Pieces

It can be overwhelming to work on a lot of different pieces at once. Here's how I manage my practice time when I'm juggling a bunch of repertoire.

Tip #9 - Bringing Fast Notes into Clarity

In this video, I demonstrate my practice technique for clarity in fast passages with an example from the Barber Violin Concerto.

Tip #10 - Scales

Sometimes you need to mix it up from three-octave scales and arpeggios. Here are a few ways I like to vary my scale practice routine to focus on intonation.