The String Family A Demonstration for first year string students Lauren Herrschaft String Teacher Central Bucks School District Doylestown, Pennsylvania [email protected] Introducing… The String Family! Sit back and relax while you learn all about the violin, viola, cello and bass! This year you are able to choose one of these instruments to play! The String Family There are four kinds of stringed instruments in the orchestra: violins, violas, cellos, and double basses. All are made of wood and have a similar curvy shape, but their sizes are different. All stringed instruments have strings stretched over them. The strings are made of steel or nylon. They are played with a bow - a long stick that has horsehair attached to it. The bow is drawn across the strings. This is called bowing . They can also be played by plucking the strings with the fingers. The Violin The violin is the smallest and highest instrument of the string family. There are more violinists in a symphony orchestra than any other instrument! Famous violinists are: Joshua Bell Sarah Chang Itzhak Perlman Now we will explore the next instrument of the string family….. The Viola The viola is slightly larger than the violin and is held the same way. Because it is larger, its tone is lower. Did you know: The following famous composers were violists? Johann Sebastian Bach Ludwig Van Beethoven Anton Dvorak Franz Joseph Haydn Felix Mendelssohn Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Franz Schubert Viola Fact! Have you ever heard of Jimi Hendrix? Before he became a famous rock guitarist in the 1960’s….. He played the viola! Now we will explore the next instrument of the string family….. The Cello The cello is much larger and much lower than the violin and viola. It must rest on the floor to be played. It will not fit under your chin! It provides the low tones that hold the orchestra together! A very famous cellist is: Yo-Yo Ma The cello sounds much lower than the violin! Do you like lower sounds? If so, you will love the cello!!! Now we will explore the next instrument of the string family….. The Double Bass The bass is the largest member of the string family. It needs to rest on the floor like the cello, only it is much larger and lower. The string bass produces rich deep tones and is often played in jazz groups. Strings Are For Everyone! Strings can be played by boys and girls. It doesn’t matter what size you are, because string instruments come in many sizes! Playing in an instrument class is a great way to make new friends! You have just learned about the string family! String players play in a group called the orchestra. Orchestra String players perform in an orchestra. An orchestra can be all strings. An orchestra can also be strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion. Did you know… More than ½ of the orchestra are string players? Questions What is the lowest sounding string instrument? The Double Bass What string instrument is held like a violin but makes a lower sound? The Viola What string instrument does Yo-Yo Ma play? The Cello Questions Which string instrument has the most players of any instrument in the orchestra? The Violin What famous rock guitarist was a viola student? Jimi Hendrix Which string instrument did you like the best? Bass Violin Viola Cello See you in the Orchestra!!!