Learning to play

without shoulder

rest and/or chin rest

Esther Visser

This is the website by violinist Esther Visser (The Netherlands) specialized in historically informed performance practice and Alexander Technique. Currently I am in the final stages of my PhD research about the way how violinists supported their violin between 1790-1830 and the implications of that on performance practice and health, receiving a fulltime scholarship from Canterbury Christ Church University (UK).

Part of the research is an experiment in which I teach balancing the violin without using a shoulder rest or chin rest to professional violinists and music students, in order to improve muscle tone / sound quality / historically informed articulation. Would you be interested to participate? Please read more about it here on the website and message me if you have any questions.


about my research on historical support of the violin and implications for modern performers


about the experiment on how to teach professional violinists to play without shoulder rest or chin rest


previous publications on this subject by Esther

Waar wil je meer informatie over?

Read more…

The Strings of Paganini

Essay on the use of gut strings in the early Romantic...

VIBRATO – a short overview in historical perspective

Vibrato (from the Latin word ‘vibrare’, to shake, a slight change...

Vibrato in the Romantic Era

This article is about different ways to use of vibrato in...