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Pauline Lerner
Violin for Adult Beginners

Some true stories about my adult beginners

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One of my adult beginners comes from a family with several generations of folk fiddlers. He got a fiddle and started teaching himself to play. After a few months, he played for his mother, herself a fiddler, and she told him to take some lessons. Happily, he found me. For a while, he found fiddle playing more difficult because he had to unlearn so many bad habits. However, after a few months, he was playing much better than he used to, and he played his fiddle for his mother again. This time she cried when she heard him because he reminded her of her own mother playing the fiddle.

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A young woman came to me for fiddle lessons after studying with another teacher for a few months. She told me that he had "assumed too much" and she didn't feel comfortable asking him questions. Her fiance was an accomplished guitarist, and he had tried to convince her to play the guitar. She tried, but the guitar just didn't feel right in her hands. When she held a fiddle and started playing it, she knew that this was her instrument. He said to her, "Why did you pick such a difficult instrument to learn?" Other people told her that she was crazy to start playing the violin as an adult because it just wouldn't work. Fortunately, she knew what she loved and she persisted. After several lessons, she told me, "I'm so glad I'm doing this. I'm glad I didn't listen to all the people who told me not to."