A Complete Guide to Playing Without (and With) a Shoulder Rest


Playing without a Shoulder Rest Gwendolyn Masin by Balazs Borocz Kincsem Palace Budapest 3519

Would you like to know how to play without a shoulder rest and why it can be beneficial for your performance? Whether you already play without a shoulder rest but want to adjust aspects of your technique, would like to incorporate playing without a shoulder rest into your daily practice whilst still playing with a shoulder rest when performing, or simply would like to find out more before taking the leap, join Gwendolyn in this in-depth exploration of the subject. The basic premise of these classes is that we can all benefit from knowing how to play without a shoulder-rest and whether we thereafter decide to use one or not is up to us. Following the course, we will be in a place to make an informed decision on the subject. Moreover, this systematic approach aims to relieve players of unnecessary tension and injury. This course consists of 5 classes or 4 days. (not bookable separately).

Tuesday 15 December: A brief history of the shoulder-rest and its purpose, accompanied by an outline of treatises discussing set-ups from 1753 until today. Gwendolyn will explain why playing without a shoulder-rest offers the player more freedom of movement for left and right hand, as well as spotlighting good and poor habits linked to playing with and without a shoulder rest.

Wednesday 16 December: An intensive look at how postural alignment impacts our playing experience. Detailed look at anatomy, origin of human movement, and an understanding of proprioception, interoception and kinesthesia when it comes to playing the violin, both with and without a shoulder-rest.

Thursday 17 December: A step by step guide to playing without a shoulder-rest. What kind of experience the player can expect; which techniques to employ that are specifically, sometimes even exclusively, linked to playing without a shoulder-rest. The pitfalls to avoid and the aspirations to reach for.

Friday 18 December: Master class for 3-4 individuals to demonstrate how to continue practising and playing with and without a shoulder rest and how to continue exploring the subject independently.


This event has multiple classes. Missed a class? You can still purchase a ticket to access the recording. The series discount price remains valid.

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All sessions: €70.00 Individual sessions: €20.00

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