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Thread: At what age is it too late to get really good at the cello?

  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaestroViolinist View Post
    No it's not. It's a very good way to learn.
    It doesn't suit everybody and it doesn't suit every instrument. It works well for violin because you can copy the teacher. It wouldn't work so well for brass instruments, and it wouldn't work so well for double reed instruments.

    It is like lots of things it depends on the person who is doing the learning.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vivara View Post
    I can sightread quite well and have played in orchestras before (such as my school of music's junior and senior symphony orchestras). I wouldn't agree that the Suzuki method is based on not reading music but reading music in a different way. For instance, instead of the D string in first position being D, E, F#, G, I know it as D, 1, 3, 4. I mean I can pick up most pieces of music and figure it out, still thinking like this.

    I played Suzuki cello the first time (when I was eight until eleven), and my teacher for the next two years I played taught me normally — non-Suzuki — without many issues. Sure, I had to think a small bit when he said 'E' or something, but really that's just bothering to learn it.
    I started at about 5 with my Grandmother, she didn't neccessarily use Suzuki, but she did write songs using the above mentioned methed (D0 123 etc.). Then not long afterwards I started reading notes, just fun things like Irish/Scottish tunes, and then finally when I got my real teacher when I turned 9 I could read notes well, even though I started off reading just numbers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivara View Post
    I'm in Ireland. I know adults don't need to take grade exams, but if I can take grade five by skipping grade four and progressing at a nice rate until I'm finished, I'll without doubt be grade 8 standard by I'm twenty. I really don't know what level I'm at, and I think I'm quite rusty, so I definitely need a teacher, so I think I need something to "help me see that I'm getting better at playing". I pick up bad habits quickly, so I certainly need someone to point out when I'm doing something wrong. I want to know my standard and not have many doubts about it. Although I'm fully aware that grades are not the be and end all.

    I'm at an awkward age in that most people my age (and most people I know who play the cello) actually play in the local youth orchestra. But the auditions for this year have already passed, and then I'll be nineteen the following year, so I'm pushing the youth bit. I think the next time I can join an orchestra without feeling out of place will be when I'm twenty anyway, and I don't want to feel uncomfortable... so I'm happy to continue doing the grades until I know I'm at a certain standard.

    Thanks for the replies guys.
    The age limit for the Queensland Symphony Youth Orchestra is 25, the less ... bigger(?) ones I don't know what their limits are. But you should still be alright at 19, definitely.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ComposerOfAvantGarde View Post
    It's alright for people who are just starting but its pointless for expieriencined players.
    Anybody can start to learn the violin using the Suzuki method and may become very experienced. However not all methods suit all people. Learning an instrument isn't "one size fits all" Some people might do very well with the Suzuki method some people might do very badly. The important thing is to find a method that suits you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaws View Post
    It doesn't suit everybody and it doesn't suit every instrument. It works well for violin because you can copy the teacher. It wouldn't work so well for brass instruments, and it wouldn't work so well for double reed instruments.

    It is like lots of things it depends on the person who is doing the learning.
    True, definitely true. It all depends on the student.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaestroViolinist View Post
    I started at about 5 with my Grandmother, she didn't neccessarily use Suzuki, but she did write songs using the above mentioned methed (D0 123 etc.). Then not long afterwards I started reading notes, just fun things like Irish/Scottish tunes, and then finally when I got my real teacher when I turned 9 I could read notes well, even though I started off reading just numbers.



    The age limit for the Queensland Symphony Youth Orchestra is 25, the less ... bigger(?) ones I don't know what their limits are. But you should still be alright at 19, definitely.
    I think Ireland might be the same as the UK where the age limit for youth orchestras is around 18?

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    Senior Member Turangalīla's Avatar
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    You might not be able to progress quickly enough to be eligible for a youth orchestra by the time you are at their age limit. However, many community orchestras, are not so bad.

    If you are seventeen, you should progress rapidly. I used to teach a piano student beginning when he was 15, and after ten months in lessons he was already in Grade 3 (RCM Grading, in Canada). You would probably do the same.
    "Perhaps only genius really understand genius."
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarterJohnsonPiano View Post
    Grade 3 (RCM Grading, in Canada). You would probably do the same.
    What is RCM grading like?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaws View Post
    I think Ireland might be the same as the UK where the age limit for youth orchestras is around 18?
    I know that the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland limits it to people who will not reach their nineteenth birthday by the following August. So I think that cuts me out. I could audition this year in November, but I don't think I'd get in. I think my city's youth orchestra is a bit more lax, but the point is that I'd feel uncomfortable being one of the oldest.

    The goal is to join my city's amateur symphony orchestra when I'm twenty/twenty-one or something. (My city doesn't have a professional symphony orchestra anyway.)

    I'll think about string quartets, but honestly, the grouping of string players in my city is quite small and they all come out of the same place where I originally studied, and the standard is all unbelievably high. For instance, most people have finished their Grade 8 by the time their fourteen or fifteen.

    Thanks again, everyone!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaws View Post
    What is RCM grading like?
    RCM has ten grades, and then the ARCT diploma. Of course, it will take a normal student at least a year to get to the Grade 1 examination level, so you don't just start there. ARCT stands for Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto, and you can get it in performance or pedagogy.
    "Perhaps only genius really understand genius."
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    In the UK we have 8 grades. Grade 8 the most difficult one is very basic. What it tests is very narrow, and it cannot be used as a standard in ensemble playing (it doesn't test this) or a qualification in music, because there is no time limit on learning the pieces for it. Children can collect the certificates. There is no benefit at all for adults who take these exams.

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    Junior Member Phidias's Avatar
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    I certainly hope not since i'm taking up the cello next year and i'm 24.

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