Cello Practice: Thumb Position

  • By: Justin Lepard
  • Date: Thursday, 31 December 2020
  • Time to read: 3 min.

Cello Practice: Thumb Position

Thanks for watching our video on thumb position! Thumb position is a great way to expand how many notes you can play in a given hand position, and is all but essential for playing up high on the instrument.

Playing the cello is far from a trivial pursuit, but it is also an immensely rewarding experience and a lifelong set of ambitions and goals. As a professional cellist based around Los Angeles and Southern California, I’m here to help you learn how to play the cello.

From playing in orchestras, traveling to Europe to premiere new works, recording on film scores here in LA and performing privately around SoCal, we try to package my experience with cello to help you accomplish your goals.

Why should you play the cello? We dare you to listen to the Prelude to Bach’s first cello suite and not want to pick one up.

The cello is experiencing a bit of a renaissance right now, and deservedly so. The instrument has been around for at least 500 years, although it’s changed a great deal from its original design.

The cello is an amazing instrument, capable of performing multiple musical roles, and this versatility is the reason its rich tone has crept into almost every musical genre.

The cello is essential to every ensemble. There is no orchestra, chamber group, quartet, or trio without the cello. The same can be said about the violin and viola, but the cello fills a unique roll. Cellos have the most stunning solo pieces.

The cello is the most versatile string instrument. One of the most incredible things about the cello is that it can become every string instrument in the orchestra.

Playing music is good for you. Being a musician is amazing for your health, both physically and mentally. Numerous studies have linked playing an instrument and improved school performance. Additionally, playing music can have long term benefits on your memory.

The cello produces the best sound. This argument might sound a little biased, but there’s some good evidence to back it up. The cello has a special sound.

Not as whiney as the violin, not too low like the bass, but deeply layered and rich. People have compared its sound to the human voice for centuries, which is probably why it sounds so appealing to our ears.

The cello makes you stand out. The music world is fiercely competitive. There isn’t an instrument out there that is “easy” to play professionally, but there are definitely ones with slightly smaller professional communities.

The cello has become popular music’s go-to string instrument
Other musical genres have always utilized string instruments beyond the guitar and piano, but their go-to has become the cello.

There’s no doubt that once you pick up a cello you’ll never want to put it back down. There’s a certain thrill that comes with being a musician. People don’t understand what an emotional, sometimes wild experience playing music can be. It will enrich every aspect of your life.

Don’t be intimidated by the process of starting from scratch, every artist has to earn their abilities. If we haven’t managed to convinced you to pick up the cello, nobody can.

So what are you waiting for? Don’t worry about buying an expensive instrument from the start – there are endless resources for renting instruments no matter where you live.

We suggest finding a rental and once you get serious consider buying your own. There’s nothing like the bond you have with your cello!

Let us know if this video helped! We’ve been making cello lesson videos for a few months now, and there are over a dozen lessons to help you learn this wonderful instrument.

It can be challenging, but a most helpful and rewarding experience.

Justin Lepard is your cello teacher. He is an accomplished cellist in LA, playing with a wide variety of musical groups and having solos in many films including Togo on Disney+ and The Invisible Man.

Whatever problems you encounter, with posture, fingerings, intonation, bowings, repertoire, and more, we have or will have the video to help you on your journey. Be sure to subscribe for all our cello lessons.

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