I’m happy to announce that Red Desert Violin will soon launch has now opened its latest course–the Wohlfahrt Opus 45 Etudes (part 1)! We’ll walk through each etude in great detail and I guarantee the class will impact every aspect of your playing.

To whet your appetite, let me give you just a little run-down, from a teacher’s point of view, of why the Wohlfahrt Etudes are so necessary.

What are the Wohlfahrt Etudes for violin?

An etude is a technical piece of music designed to sharpen a specific skill or technique. Thus, the Wohlfahrt Etudes will help you to master about 20 crucial skills. They’re a great workout and very instructive.

There are many Wohlfahrt etudes collections, but the Opus 45 collection is the best known. This collection of etudes is especially prized as the perfect fit for intermediate students. There are actually 60 Opus 45 etudes, divided into two sets of 30. (part 1 and pat 2) The first 30 are a little easier and remain in 1st position exclusively. This makes them an excellent entry level etude book, as they “feel” easy and are not intimidating. The second 30 are harder rhythms, more technical bowings, and they use 3rd position a lot.

Why are the Wohlfahrt Etudes for violin important?

Etude study is important because:

  • There are etudes that fit EVERY ability level
  • Etudes help us to focus on specific techniques and isolate skills
  • They enhance our practice sessions
  • They improve our sight-reading
  • They teach us to be critical and analytical
  • The amount of effort a student spends on the etudes is directly correlated to the pace with which they’ll progress in their playing.

Even if you aren’t sure what you’re doing, the mere act of playing the etudes raises your overall ability.

When should I start the Wohlfahrt Etudes for violin?

Of course everyone is different, but the Wohlfahrt Opus 45 Part 1 etudes are ideal toward the second half of Suzuki Book 3 into Suzuki Book 4. A book 2 student will feel very challenged by them.

They require certain basic “essentials” such as note reading, basic bow control (bow is straight and stays on the chosen sounding point), good posture and form, metronome skills, understanding of tone production, and good left hand habits (relaxation and intonation). But even if you don’t have all those skills, my course allows for “remedial” work to address any deficiencies you discover as you work through the etudes.

How do I get the most from the Wohlfahrt Etudes for violin?

Etudes should be studied with a plan in mind. I focus on several carefully planned priorities in this class:

  • Improving our sight reading
  • Basic technique and fixing deficiencies
  • Identifying the technical focus of each etude
  • Learning to practice efficiently
  • Learning to play artistically and with personality
  • Buckling down and learning all the bowings presented with each etude.

I could go on and on about how crucial the Wohlfahrt Etudes for violin are, but that’s enough for now. Click here for more information about this fantastic course!