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Todd Pafford wrote:

> Um, we seem to be forgetting that a violin is a fretless instrument.  
> one string raises the tension on the remaining strings forcing the 
> to modify their fingering.  A really proficient player of fretless
> instruments does this all the time, though to a lesser extent usually, 
> singers of any proficiency do this constantly without thinking about it.
> The amazing thing about Perlman was not that he could find and hit an A 
> 882 Hz when needed, its that he was able to find replacements for notes 
> he simply could not achieve on a violin whose range may have suddenly 
> truncated at one end or the other.  I say 'may' because the article 
> state which string broke.
> In any case, I think the instrument being slightly out of tune is small
> potatoes when compared to the mental and physical gymnastics it would 
> taken to completely rearrange a violin concerto on the fly.
> My two cents,
> TP
> On Wed, 15 Aug 2001, David Beardsley wrote:
> > > in theory correct, but in practice, i recall that tuning individual
> > > strings on an instrument of the viol family is not as hectic as 
>doing so
> > > on a floating-trem equipped guitar, since tho the bridge is 
>suspended, it
> > > doesn't ride on springs (insert image of golden gate rising slowly 
>up and
> > > down through fog on giant slinkys...); nevertheless i suspect it 
> > > throw the other strings a bit (but not a lot) off...
> >
> > Exactly as I thought.

i haven't forgotten that. i played viola for 8 years, it was my first 
(blah blah blah). i'm often reminded of the difference between the fretted 
of a guitar and the slinkiness of that smooth fingerboard- but i don't 
having frets or not has much bearing on one string's tension (or sudden 
lack of
it) and the other strings on the instrument (it's more important how the 
are attached to the body of the instrument-in consort or more 
individually) but
i agree that it helps determine how much one can compensate for the change 
on a violin, infinite range of adjustment, on a fretted instrument, fairly
limited range, but still a range, as anyone who has played on an 
instrument for long understands, having to compensate for the system's 

but i agree that what was amazing about perlman's feat was arriving at a
completely novel way of constructing the interplay of notes on his violin 
on the
spot, with three strings, not four- the human mind is quite a marvelous
appendage, no?

my comment was in no way intended to belittle his remarkable talents!

lance g.