3 Octave Scales
Aug 14, 2009
My students have used many charts over their course of study to learn the fingerboard. Putting the 3 Octave Scales into chart form seemed like a natural outcome of their training. Seeing the scales in chart form helps to see half steps, shifts, and makes it easy to compare fingerings from scale to scale.
These fingerings are the ones I learned in college. They are by no means the only fingerings but I like to use these particular fingerings as a foundation for learning 3 Octave Scales. The scales all start in first position and the first shift is either to 3rd position or to 4th position.
In an ideal world – instead of a letter in each box I’d put a little snippet of music staff with the note printed on the staff. Unfortunately – I haven’t figured out how to do that yet.
I just love watching the transformation on students’ playing abilities when they begin the process of learning 3 Octave Scales. The left hand posture takes a leap in maturity in the following categories: facility, fingerboard geography, and muscle memory. When students get to the point of practicing a variety of rhythms and bowings with their memorized 3 Octave Scales the benefits are limitless and the habit of always playing through the scales becomes part of one’s daily routine.
I’ll finish with one of my favorite scale stories. An extremely busy high school student of mine totally faked me out at a lesson one day. She came in and just zipped through Vivaldi’s Winter Concerto with grace and ease. I said “Wow! You’ve been practicing!” She said “No, but I do make sure that I do my scales.”
3 Octave Scales download
3 Octave Scales video
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