As an instrumentalist you are trying to copy the most natural instrument, the voice
Yehudi Menuhin, Itzhak Perlman and Ida Haendel have all said to me that you need to find your own voice. As a musician you have to make up your own mind and not just copy existing recordings. All the notes you need are in the score, but it’s up to you to come up with your own interpretation and phrasing. Always question your decisions. Why am I using this fingering or that bowing? And have a reason for your choices. Isaac Stern once told me to listen to vocalists – great opera and lieder singers. As an instrumentalist you are trying to copy the most natural instrument, the voice. Listening to singers is inspiring and can help you to create your own interpretations.
Photo: Christopher Dunlop