13 March 2010

The Violin...a small musical instrument, but one which has stood the test of time!!!

The Violin, also called the fiddle is a very fascinating bowed instrument & as most of us know, consists of 4 strings, tuned in fifths & played with a bow. It is held between the shoulder & chin & has got one of the highest pitches of the stringed instruments family.

The instrument actually originated in the early 16th century in Italy (but of course!!!) & was made by Andrea Amati. It consists of simple pieces of wood which are glued together & strung with gut, nylon or steel. The instrument is played by a violinist who produces sound by drawing a bow across the strings & manipulating his fingers accordingly.

The violin, ever since its inception has been a much cherished & flexible instrument, used in all kinds of musical styles like baroque music, classical jazz, folk, pop, rock 'n roll etc. This just goes to show its versatility & thus can be called an orchestra in itself. Classical music & jazz used the violin as a solo instrument but popular music in the 1970's relied heavily on it as an accompaniment for an orchestra. Musicians like Bing Crosby & much recently the Corrs have still kept its influence alive even with the advent of electronic music.

Even in India, the violin is a very important part of South Indian classical music & has even been used in film music!!! Although I do find it complex & a bit daunting to learn, it would be a much cherished dream of mine to have done so!!

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