Left hand fiddle

This topic contains 6 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  John Cockman 1 week ago.

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  • #63917

    Tigerking
    Participant

    Should a young (8-10 yrs) fiddler that is left-handed play a regular violin or a left-hand violin?  Also, can a regular violin be refitted for playing left-handed?

    #63918

    Vanja my daughter 10y is left handed. We start on the regular, and she learn fingers faster then most. Then she also can join orchestra where they pretty stright…

     

    I would let the young start with regular.

    #63920
    Steve Srader
    Steve Srader
    Participant

    If it weren’t for the bass bar inside the fiddle ,you could string it backwards , but I don’t think it would work out because the high strings would be over the bass bar ? On the violin/fiddle both hands come into play and the bow hand is every bit as important as the hand that plays the fingers on the neck , So I personally would let him/her use a standard fiddle/violin as he/her will use both hands anyway in order to learn and being Ambidextrous will help him/her in life ! Just my opium .

    #63924
    Great Scott
    Great Scott
    Moderator

    Hi Tigerking, and welcome to the forums.

    John is left-handed but plays a regular fiddle.

    Ditto to what Steve said.  I don’t think you can string a regular fiddle to be a left-handed one.  That’s why they make specific left-handed fiddles.  Can sometimes be cheaper OR more expensive than regular; depends where you buy it.  There are some left-handed fiddlers out there playing left-handed fiddles; but I think in the main, the majority of left-handed fiddlers play a regular fiddle.

    The child you mention could find it a bit difficult in a group learning situation if he or she is left-handed and playing a left-handed fiddle while all the other kids are playing a regular fiddle.  Most everything taught to the group would be directed to right-handed students playing a regular fiddle.  But you never know until the child tries.  Why not take the child to a store and let him or her try out both regular and left-hand fiddles and see which one they feel most comfortable with.  Maybe get a few private lessons on  both a regular and a left-handed fiddle and see which one is better suited to the child (as per the teacher’s thoughts).  Some teachers have extra fiddles for the kids to try.

    #63925
    rodger
    rodger
    Participant

    All the advantages are for standard, right hand playing set up.  There would be no advantage to learning left hand, but only disadvantages.  Being left handed would mean starting out with the dominant hand on the strings instead of the bow.  The universal experience for left handed people learning standard violin set up is that it’s no big deal at all.  Right handed people have to learn to use the left hand to do the challenging finger work.  Left handed people have to learn to use the right hand to do challenging bow work.  It all come’s out in the wash just the same.  (Wash is properly pronounced war-shh.)  We don’t even think about it.  We had one youngster that was left handed and I didn’t even know it until she was quite a ways along, and before long she had the most beautiful bow control than most adults.

    #64020

    Tigerking
    Participant

    Thanks for all of your thoughts.  We had considered the problem with playing in a group/orchestra.  I can see how a lefty would have a slight advantage with the strong hand doing the notes.

    #64023

    John Cockman
    Keymaster

    I agree with all of the above! Since the fiddle is a melody-based instrument, left-handed people have an advantage with the notes. However, lefties sometimes struggle with intricate bowing and rhythm. I would not recommend buying a left-handed instrument.

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