Help, cat (and fiddler) at risk
This is a serious situation and I hope I can count on your help. The cat needs your help and I need your help too. Below is a brief description of the problem. (Sorry, I do not have an audioclip of same, but if I had I would be loath to inflict it on you.)
Problem: Some days, thankfully only some, when I draw the bow across the strings of my fiddle, the heartrending scream/squeal? of a young cat in dire pain can be heard. I cannot take much of this and usually retire the fiddle to its case without undue delay. The result is a badly-needed practice abandoned, graph of my progress flattens, possibly takes a downturn.
What is Happening: This is my understanding and perhaps you can enlighten me here if I am in error. Sometimes, the bow/hairs-string contact causes an unusual vibration and produces a sound inaudible to the human ear. But not to the cat’s. The cat within the fiddle hears this disagreeable sound and squeals in agony. The player, myself in this case, in sympathy with the cat usually desists. After all, we are not monsters, and we would like to be able to say, "No cats have been injured in the playing of this tune." (There is also the meaner motive of protecting our own ears.)
WHY: But the big question is, of course, why is this happening. Is it technique. Probably not. Since my technique is impeccable and unvarying, I’m dismissing this possibility. That leaves equipment, fiddle, strings, bow, hair, rosin, locale. Okay, fiddle, strings, bow, and rosin are constants (well, small changes over long periods); locale is a true constant (only play within the safe confines of my own home, especially given the cat’s condition). That leads me to the conclusion that this is a hair problem.
Is my analysis correct? If not, what is the explanation.
Most important, whatever the cause, what is the solution. To use a dental analogy, how can we get Mairtin to brush longer and end up with fewer cavities, or what is the fiddling equivalent of a better-tasting toothpaste? (It has occurred to me to smash the fiddle and let the cat out, but the fiddle cost me a lot of money and another fiddle if/when I could afford it might have a similar cat problem).
Go raibh maith agaibh. I await your wisdom.