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String instruments such as the cello, violin, viola and double bass are part of the rich cultural heritage of classical music and still a great choice for students taking their first steps into some serious musical education. The appeal of string instruments is not limited to classical and they have also been used in many rock and pop recordings, making sure they'll still remain popular for a long, long time!
From the ominous cello motif in the 'Jaw's' soundtrack composed by John Williams, and Vivaldi's most renowned work, 'The Four Seasons', string instruments are regarded as one of the most expressive instruments to date. When bowing a Violin, Viola or Cello, vibrato creates an almost voice-like quality. In contrast, pizzicato and more aggressive staccato bow techniques can bring excitement to film scores and concertos.
String instruments have also provided accompaniment to modern Pop and Rock music; the string ensemble in 'Eleanor Rigby' helped to highlight the sorrowful lyrics and build a foundation for The Beatles more serious song writing style. More recently artists including Vanessa Mae and Britain's Got Talent group Escala have utilised electric Violins, Violas and Cellos to reinvent Classical music with new Pop style arrangements.