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Digital Subscriptions > The Strad > June 2019 > Left-hand finger independence

Left-hand finger independence

Teaching &Playing

How to build strength and flexibility for a truly agile left hand adriana larosa ransomProfessor of cello and string project director, Illinois State University, US

• BORNLeon, Iowa, US

• STUDIED WITHTanya Remenikova, Nina Gordon

• TEACHESSchool, university and private students aged 9+

For cellists, finger independence is a critical skill to develop actively - it won’t necessarily just evolve on its own. Without it, you will struggle to play chords and fast passages; you will also have trouble with left-hand agility, intonation and left-hand pizzicato; and you will struggle to produce a beautiful vibrato on every finger. To develop independent fingers successfully, you will need to work on left-hand mechanics and finger strength, with really round, arched and strong fingers and a relaxed thumb.

EXERCISES

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About The Strad

We conclude our investigation of Stradivari’s moulds and examine some radical teaching methods. Vadim Gluzman, Philip Dukes and Matthew Barley are interviewed and there’s our annual Accessories supplement, featuring carbon fibre bows, wolf eliminators, mutes and lots more.