Printer-friendly version

How to Play a 6/8 Rhythm Fast and Rhythmically

Zlata Brouwer

Written by
Published: July 14, 2015 at 7:23 AM [UTC]

In this episode I answer a question from one of our viewers. Stella writes:
Hello Zlata
6/8 rhythm is very difficult for me to play both fast and rhythmically. PLEEEAAASE,help me.
Love, Stella from Slovenia.

Lots of people aren't used to playing a 6/8 rhythm. They tend to play this rhythm note for note: 1 2 3 4 5 6. Because if this playing fast is difficult and becomes sloppy. That's not the way to do it.

The way to do it is to find the rhythmical pulse in the piece. This pulse is most of the times on the 1 and the 4.

In the video I demonstrate how to do it right and wrong.

If you read something out loud, you read word for word and sentence for sentence, not letter for letter. If you have a pulse on the 1 and the 4, you don't play note for note, but you create musical words.

Faster pieces can have the pulse of an 6/8 rhythm only on the first beat.

If you make a whole of the parts and you play with a rhythmical pulse, it's much easier to play fast and rhythmically.

Is this video helpful to you? Please let me know in the comments below! If you like it, share it with your friends!



PS: Do you have questions or struggles on violin or viola playing? Post a comment below or send an e-mail to and I might dedicate a Violin Lounge TV episode to answering your question!

This entry has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music: Check out our selection of Celtic music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra
Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases Summer Music Programs Directory
Find a Summer Music Program Shopping Guide Shopping Guide

The Wallis Presents

Metzler Violin Shop

Southwest Strings

Bobelock Cases

Johnson String Instrument/Carriage House Violins

Jargar Strings

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop


Los Angeles Violin Shop


String Masters

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine