How to Play the Viola: Beginner Basics

This teaches people who have never played before the basics of playing viola and one song.

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How to Play the Viola: Beginner Basics
33 Steps
Supplies
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1
First, you must tighten the bow. Turn the screw in the very bottom clockwise until the wood of the bow is slightly curved. This is a loosened bow.

First, you must tighten the bow. Turn the screw in the very bottom clockwise until the wood of the bow is slightly curved. This is a loosened bow.

2
This is what a tightened bow should look like.

This is what a tightened bow should look like.

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3
To hold the bow properly, make your fingers into a lama shape with your thumb tucked under and your pinky and pointer fingers up in the air and the middle and ring over the thumb.

To hold the bow properly, make your fingers into a lama shape with your thumb tucked under and your pinky and pointer fingers up in the air and the middle and ring over the thumb.

4
Make sure your thumb is under the ring and middle fingers.

Make sure your thumb is under the ring and middle fingers.

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Now it's time to pick up the bow! Put your bow in between your thumb and middle and ring fingers. Your pinky should be standing up and your pointer should be resting on the bow above the other fingers

Now it's time to pick up the bow! Put your bow in between your thumb and middle and ring fingers. Your pinky should be standing up and your pointer should be resting on the bow above the other fingers

6
Your thumb goes under the bow between the bow hair and the stick. It should be between the leather casing on the bow and the frog(the very bottom of the bow).

Your thumb goes under the bow between the bow hair and the stick. It should be between the leather casing on the bow and the frog(the very bottom of the bow).

7
Now you must put the shoulder rest on so it is comfortable to play. Put the rest on by sliding it on the sides of the bottom of the instrument.

Now you must put the shoulder rest on so it is comfortable to play. Put the rest on by sliding it on the sides of the bottom of the instrument.

8
To tune the viola, use the tuning pegs and a digital tuner. To make the top string(A string) go higher, turn the tuner clockwise. To go lower, turn it counterclockwise.

To tune the viola, use the tuning pegs and a digital tuner. To make the top string(A string) go higher, turn the tuner clockwise. To go lower, turn it counterclockwise.

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Tune the D string, second highest, G string, second lowest, and C string, lowest, the same way.

Tune the D string, second highest, G string, second lowest, and C string, lowest, the same way.

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If the strings are very out of tune, you will use the tuning pegs. When making the string go higher, do not turn it too far or your string will snap. Do not be worried if the string gets loose.

If the strings are very out of tune, you will use the tuning pegs. When making the string go higher, do not turn it too far or your string will snap. Do not be worried if the string gets loose.

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Next, place your left hand on the body of the viola.

Next, place your left hand on the body of the viola.

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Lift the instrument above your shoulder.

Lift the instrument above your shoulder.

13
Place the instrument on your shoulder.

Place the instrument on your shoulder.

14
Put your chin on the chin rest and make sure the shoulder rest is feeling good. Make sure when to hold the instrument, you stand with good posture. And pick up the bow.

Put your chin on the chin rest and make sure the shoulder rest is feeling good. Make sure when to hold the instrument, you stand with good posture. And pick up the bow.

15
Now, it's time to play twinkle twinkle little star. Play the second string from the top twice. It should sound like a D on the tuner which should still be on the tuning pegs.

Now, it's time to play twinkle twinkle little star. Play the second string from the top twice. It should sound like a D on the tuner which should still be on the tuning pegs.

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Now play your top string, the A string twice.

Now play your top string, the A string twice.

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The first finger on the A string is also played twice and it should look like a B on the tuner. Make sure it's in the right spot.

The first finger on the A string is also played twice and it should look like a B on the tuner. Make sure it's in the right spot.

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A string once

A string once

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Third finger on D string twice. It should sound like a G check on the tuner.

Third finger on D string twice. It should sound like a G check on the tuner.

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Second finger on the D string twice. Make sure this finger is close to the third finger spot. It should sound like an F sharp(F#)

Second finger on the D string twice. Make sure this finger is close to the third finger spot. It should sound like an F sharp(F#)

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Play the first finger on the D string once. It should be right across from the first finger on the A string. It should sound like an E.

Play the first finger on the D string once. It should be right across from the first finger on the A string. It should sound like an E.

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A string twice

A string twice

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G or third finger twice.

G or third finger twice.

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F# or second finger twice.

F# or second finger twice.

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E or first finger once.

E or first finger once.

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D string twice.

D string twice.

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A string twice

A string twice

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B or first finger twice.

B or first finger twice.

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A string once.

A string once.

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G or third finger twice.

G or third finger twice.

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F# or second finger twice.

F# or second finger twice.

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E or first finger twice.

E or first finger twice.

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D string once. You're finished. Great job!

D string once. You're finished. Great job!

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