After finding herself in a practice funk, 12 year-old violinist Eleanore Hamilton chose to write this inspirational book designed to bring kids closer to their instrument by way of playfulness in practice. By working calendar-style journal illustrated by the author, Violin Notes turns ?practicing? into ?playing? by encouraging kids to track their playing (ups and downs), write notes to teachers, and ultimately engage in their playing by way of reflection. The book empowers children to build their own relationship with their instrument through laughter and levity through 52 tips and tricks, many of which have been contributed by professional conductors, professional violinists and other musicians.
"This is a truly wonderful book, full of spirit and youthful wisdom ? any violinist is likely to find great value in reading it. The fifty-two ideas and games that Eleanore suggests here can lead us towards a more playful, attentive, and joyous path in our practicing ? and that is the most natural way to go with music. Thank you, Eleanore and all, for this wonderful gift!"
Violinist, Improviser, Fiddler, Composer
"Eleanore Hamilton's Violin Notes is a marvel of creative problem-solving. Ms. Hamilton identifies unusual and helpful suggestions for working steadily toward those seemingly insurmountable goals ? one day, hour, or minute at a time. The ability to make work fun helps not only the young musician practicing independently, but also the teacher looking to inspire students with innovative techniques, and the professional seeking to motivate colleagues or teammates to work well together? Above all, this is a book about play, and how to reinvent the often arduous process of practicing by eliciting joy and laughter, offering inspirational quotes by accomplished musicians, and bringing the black lines, dots and squiggles off the white page and into the technicolor realm of audible music.
In presenting her own suggestions in conjunction with those from various contributors, Eleanore has illuminated a curious, fun-loving, light-hearted mind and revealed novel ideas for feeding and growing the appetite of a hungry young musician. Enjoy this outstanding piece of work!"
Director, San Domenico School Virtuoso Program
Director, Marin Symphony Youth Orchestra
"WOW. Incredible. Great. What a great idea to help kids form a real connection, a relationship, to their instrument and to its sound. It is possible to have a good relationship when the instrument is not a 'must' but 'fun.' For me, this building of a relationship, starting very early, is the most important thing in Eleanore's book. It is very thoughtful, creative and practical. Awesome!"
Artistic Director & Chief Conductor of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Salzburg
Artistic director of the Salzburg Cultural Association
"Eleanore Hamilton's Violin Notes is a wonderful tool for kids who find practicing the violin to be a chore. There are lots of fun, playful games to try and the illustrations will make anyone laugh. Eleanore's creative mind and playful approach to the daunting task of learning an instrument is genuinely inspiring. I wish I had had this book when I was a young violinist. I would have practiced more often!"
-Laura Jackson, Director and Conductor, Reno Philharmonic Orchestra
"I am happy to recommend this book to all of our students!"
Director of Music Conservatory and Music Programs
San Domenico School
"I wish I had Violin Notes as a child learning to play the violin. In Violin Notes, Eleanore Hamilton strategically pulls ideas from her own experiences to create a guide to making practicing the violin fun! She has also gathered ideas from her teachers, family members, friends and fellow musicians, putting them collectively into one resource for the benefit of all children learning to play the violin. All of the tips in this book are fantastic! The writing and illustrations also make this book easy to read and exciting to use. I will definitely recommend this book to all of my young students learning to play the violin to keep them excited about practicing!"
-Jenni Charles, Fiddler, Dead Winter Carpenters
"Violin Notes is a creative book that is both wise and funny. It helps improvement in small, steady, fun increments and will help you to become one with music and your instrument. Anyone will benefit from reading it!!!!"
-Bella Betts, 12, Musician
"In Violin Notes, Eleanore gives students and teachers of music a wealth of ideas for not only young musicians, but for anyone involved in music. The suggestions are easy to read and contain suggestions that are imaginative, inspiring, and thought-provoking. This book is a must for teachers and students alike with so many concepts and ideas that work with students of any age and ability."
Cazadero Music Camp
"I bought 10!"
Benjamin Zander, Conductor of the Boston Philharmonic
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