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  • Writer's pictureBecca Longhenry

Audio for 3-octave major scales and arpeggios

Updated: Jan 12, 2022

Access the Google Drive folder containing the recordings here.

All of my students know how much I love to make them play scales! Scales are the foundation of all our technique, and due to their simplicity and patterns, are easily learned. Musicians can isolate or combine any number of technical details as they play a scale, and it's never too early to start.

My students and I begin with one-octave scales in Suzuki Book 1, continue on to Essentials for Strings with two-octave scales and elementary studies of three-octave scales, primarily establishing intonation and fingerboard mapping. When students are comfortable playing the basic scales, we progress to Scales for Advanced Violinists or Violists. Along the way, I introduce velocity and slurring exercises, adding a turn - scale degrees 1 3 2 before the scale, and 3 2 1 following the scale - so that each scale begins with the same bow and the exercises can be linked. (An excellent depiction of what this series of exercises looks like can be found in Scales for Advanced Violinists/Violists, but I think that, like many pedagogical tools, it has been taught for so long and by so many people that it is impossible to pinpoint its source.) In short, the bow remains constant, always sustaining for 2 beats (or 4 beats, as indicated in SfAV), while the left hand accelerates.

To help my students with rhythm and intonation, I have created recordings of all major and melodic minor three-octave scales in the following configurations, using the turn at the beginning and end, at 56 bpm:​

  • Half notes (meant to be played one note per bow)

  • Quarter notes (two notes per bow)

  • Quarter-note triplets (three notes per bow)

  • Eighth notes (four)

  • Eighth note triplets (six)

  • Sixteenth notes (eight)

  • All of the above in one continuous series

The chromatic scales, each arpeggio, and the full arpeggio series (i, I, vi, IV, iv, i°, I7) are all presented in half notes and quarter notes at 56 bpm. In the future, I may update the arpeggio recordings to include smaller note values.

Again, you may access the Google Drive folder containing the recordings here! Be sure to comment or send me an email if you find any errors in these files!

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