How to Play Scales

As you practice scales, maintain good technique:
 
  • Arms off the soundboard
  • Wrists slightly bent inwards
  • Space between thumb and second finger
  • Curved fingers, and playing on the tips of the fingers
  • Closing your fingers all the way into your palm as you pluck
REMEMBER: As you play these scales, keep your hand and wrist as still as possible. Don’t “peel” towards you as you play up, or “roll” away towards the column as you play down. Keep hand and wrist still and centered with no extra movement.
Scales in the ascending direction:
  • Place 4-3-2-1 on C-D-E-F
    • Play 4, close completely
    • Play 3, close completely
    • Play 2, close completely
    • Before you play your thumb, cross-under with your 4th finger and place it on G.
    • Play your thumb.
    • Before you play your 4th, finger, place your 3-2-1 on A-B-C
    • Play 4, close completely
    • Play 3, close completely
    • Play 2, close completely
    • Play 1, close completely and raise up and away from the harp
 
Scales in the descending direction:
  • Place 1-2-3-4 on C-B-A-G
    • Play 1, close completely
    • Play 2, close completely
    • Play 3, close completely
    • Before you play your 4th finger, cross-over with your thumb and place it on F
    • Play your 4th
    • Before you play your thumb, place 1-2-3 on E-D-C
    • Play each finger and close completely.
    • At the 4th, play and raise up and away.
Remember to relax after each pluck, breathing through each pluck.