Posted by Caroline on October 29, 1997 at 20:42:36:
I was looking at one of the Sharpe episodes the other night, and I noticed that John Tams (Coporal Hagman) plays his violin in the crook of his arm, not under his chin. That in itself didn't surprise me as I know many folk fiddlers do the same, and it sure helps if you are "calling" a dance, or singing to your own accompaniment not to have to do so with a squashed face! I have always assumed that it was just an example of the folk tradition diverging from the classical, but I have no idea if this is true. Is it just a "time" thing? When you look at old paintings of violins they don't seem to have chin pieces attatched. Were they actually played differently at one time? And what is the advantage of playing it under the chin as opposed to on the arm?
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