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Studies help with Joseph Viola's techniques: Scale Studies


Hi all,

I've been trolling around for a few weeks and finally have learnt enough to ask a question:) I just got my hands on Joseph's 3 books and must admit that it scares the @#$% out of me! what's with 200 pages of scales with variations??? ok, I do understand the need :) I tried it, but page 1 alone took me a good 20 minutes! From the way it's written, I think that each page should take less than a minute for an accomplished player. My questions:

- how much of time should I dedicate to this book? it gets frustrating looking at the smooth pattern while butchering the sound!

- how long would an accomplished player take to play through the book?

- assume that my aim should be to spend 10-20 minutes each day on it and work towards a weekly cycle of completing the entire book...so linked to the last question 200pages/7days/20min= about 90s per page

anything else that you can tell me about the books? I will chat to my sax teacher...I meet him once a week...lesson 3 is today:)
I never liked the exercises on arpeggios with approach notes, so I would skip the ones you find REALLY non musical.

Ideally you should take one set of exercises and play it in all 12 keys, then move on.
I personally play a set of my own "digital patterns" (5x12), including scales, and it takes a few minutes a day.
I don't know these books, but generally with these things I'd say the important thing is not to race through all the exercises as fast as you can, but to make each one sound as good as you can before moving on. Take as long as you need. Doesn't really matter if you never finish the book, as long as you've learnt something along the way.
Hi xcal,

My advice would be to follow the advice of your teacher, that's what you're paying them for, and hopefully they will have years of experience and therefore be able to plan the best path for you to fully master your instrument.

I've not got Joseph Viola's books but have heard of them, have you seen Pete's warm up exercise?

And don't forget, or avoid as I have done the chromatic scale.

All the best,

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I definitely think that playing a exercise book from cover to cover is boring and monotonous.
As said above - find the ones that speak to you musically and work on those regularly adding new ones with fluency and technical improvement. :D
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I definitely think that playing a exercise book from cover to cover is boring and monotonous.

That is part of the fun. It is perfect when you are depressed.
And is not as boring as going to the gym.

Rascher 154 studies is still my favourite, following the alternative order.
My teacher says

I'm working through the scales with my teach, so he says that I should skip the scales section of the book and start with the 'Diads and tonal variation' section for the scales that we work on. He loves the book! Also advised to take it at my own pace rather than as depicted. So I'm basically on an exercise pattern of some:
- scales
- Diads/tonal variations
- some songs (all of me, unforgettable,and anything that I take to class)

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