Supplemental Repertoire

Janie said: Oct 24, 2014
 Violin, Recorder, Viola
16 posts

I have a violin student who is in early Book 4. She plays quite well, but is not interested in pursuing violin as a profession, nor does she want to continue with the progressively more difficult repertoire in the Suzuki books. She loves the violin and wants to continue playing. She is a sophomore in high school, an honor student, in speech and debate, la crosse, and has a part time job. Needless to say, there are a lot of demands on her time besides practicing.

Does anyone know of some pieces that are at the late book 3 or early book 4 level that I could introduce her to? She has seen the Barbara Barber books and has played some of the pieces in the first book, but we need to move on. She really can’t handle a technical challenge at this point in her life. Ideas?




Lydia said: Oct 25, 2014
Lydia TangViola, Violin
East Lansing, MI
1 posts

I enjoy using Brian Wicklund’s American Fiddle Method books. I feel like exploring fiddling really helps bring out the creativity in my students and can be a lot of fun.
I also love Samuel Applebaum’s “Beautiful Music for Two Violins.” The violin parts aren’t terribly difficult but still is designed to focus on teaching musical concepts while making music together. I hope this helps!

Susan Gagnon said: Oct 27, 2014
Susan GagnonTeacher Trainer
Suzuki Association Member
7 posts

You could have a look at Royal Conservatory’s Music Development Program Levels 4 and 5. Books can be ordered from the Music Development Program website
Also, my husband recommends “Baroque violinist” by Sheila Nelson and “Violin collection” by Edward U Jones (a collection of fiddle tunes from around the world including a nice set of American fiddle tunes).

Heather Figi said: Nov 7, 2014
 96 posts

The Sarabande by C. Bohm in the 2nd Volume of B. Barber’s book is very compelling and satisfying but not that difficult.

Best wishes with this.

Rafael Videira said: Nov 8, 2014
Rafael Videira
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Violin
West Haven, CT
26 posts

Some suggestions I’d have:

  • If you can take a look at the ABRSM ( collection, I’m sure you’ll find interesting pieces in there;
  • “Allegro Spiritoso” from Gingold’s “Solos for the Violin Player”;
  • Mollenhauer’s “Boy Paganini” (B. Barber, Vol. 2);
  • Clebanoff’s “Hoedown” (B. Barber, Vol. 2);
  • “Concertino” by G. Perlman (SHAR’s “Fun with Solos”);
  • “Country Dance” by D. Heins;
  • Brahms’ “Hungarian Dance #5″ from SHAR’s “Fun with Solos”;
  • Rieding’s “Concertino in Hungarian Style”, Op. 21 (this may be a little too hard, even though it’s just 1st and 3rd positions)

I hope this helps! Another good resources is this link:


Dr. Rafael Videira, DMA
Violist—Violin and Viola Instructor—Conductor

Caitlin said: Nov 8, 2014
Merced, CA
41 posts

Perhaps start her on the first violin part of some ensemble/quartet music. With all my students about that age, they are working on a first and second violin part to different pieces. I get them together once a month to practice. Over the past few years they have a good amount of difficult pieces worked up. Add some volume 1, 2, and 3 pieces with duets, they are set for playing out in the world as background music. They really like it a lot, a lot more than solo playing at that age. It is also fun for their lessons because we have a duetish thing to play. I work with them on new technique just as if it was a Suzuki piece. I do shifting and positions, bowings, keys, etc. This might be the ticket to get her moving forward and motivated again (I’m sorry, I was doing about the same amount of stuff you just mentioned above, and I still made time for violin). The Entrance to the Queen of Sheba, Air on the G String, Mozart Quartet 157, O Solo Mio, Come Back to Sorrento, Largo from Winter, St. Paul Suit, and Palladio are all within her range. You can start making the music harder and she will move forward.

Lisa said: Nov 14, 2014
Lisa Hollis
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Viola
Dorchester, MA
21 posts

Hi Janie! A piece I’ve been using a lot lately is Concerto in b minor by Oskar Rieding. It is an impressive sounding piece, but is only in 1st position. B minor is an easy key for violins to play in and is different from most of our Suzuki pieces. There is a fantastic recording of it on Itzhak Perlman’s album “Concertos from my Childhood.”

I would also try the RCM books Susan suggested, although I might start with Grade 3. In Grade 3 there is a cute piece called “The Gabby Ghost”. In Grade 4 I really like “The Infant Paganini,” which is significantly easier than “The Boy Paganini” in BB’s book.

But I would start with the Rieding concerto. I’ve given it to two teenagers lately who needed an easy piece and they really like it!

Barbara Swanson said: Dec 15, 2014
 1 posts

Senaille’s: Allegro Spiritoso in the Joseph Gingold Book
would be a nice choice perhaps.
I am working with a similar student and she is learning from and liking this
piece which seems to be a good fit for her in this situation.

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