Strings the basics!

Stringed Instrument note ranges:

Violin range: G3-A7

Viola range: C3-E6

Cello range: C2- C6

Double Bass range: C2-C5

Some Stringed Instrument Playing Techniques:

Vibrato: This a difficult technique to accomplish on a strings instrument. It is created by the finger  being placed on the neck of the instrument which then moves slightly up or down with pressure creating a sound of the note ‘flexing’ back and fourth.

Glissando:  This is a slide effect sometimes used as a transition between two notes, a glide if you will from one note to the other.

Trill: This technique is where the string player plays one note then quickly applying another finger just after the first note then choosing between the too notes and the trill speed.

Tremolo: This effect is created with a exstremely fast motion on the bow. Quickly moving up and down, the speed at which to the players preference. Of course the quicker the movement the more difficult it is to distinguish.

Staccatto: This is a more harsher tone separating the notes playing one at a time. The bow is pressed hard onto the strings and then the bow moves once for this technique, per note. It can not be a smooth motion otherwise it would then be classed as a legato technique. This affect is great for more rhythmic sections.

Spicatto: This technique is similar to ‘staccato” the difference being that the string is bounced on by the bow it still has a sharp attack however a much shorted release.

Legato:  This effect generates a smooth motion from the constant bow movement of ‘up and down’. This motion means that the notes that are played are smoothly transitioned from one to the other.



n/a. (n/a). Range of Instruments. Available: Last accessed 18/2/2011.

n/a. (2001). String Technique Glossary. Available: Last accessed 18/2/2011.


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