Melanie’s Online Course for Cello Beginners: “Learn Cello from the Beginning!”

This online course for beginner cellists is now available on Udemy for a great price. This is a fraction of the cost of one-to-one lessons, whether in-person or online. Click here for the referral link. Udemy’s Terms and Conditions apply. Please click on the Terms and Conditions page to view Melanie’s Agreement, which contains more details on her online course, helpful advice, and her Terms and Conditions.

“Learn Cello from the Beginning!” is split into 2 Sets, with 14 Tutorial Videos in Set 1, and 16 in Set 2. Musicianship training is included  – Solfege and pulse/rhythm work. Each tutorial video has an accompanying document, which can be printed off, containing notation, homework tasks, and hints. Students who want feedback on their progress can contact Melanie to book a one-off lesson with her online.

Please see this Introduction Video in which Melanie talks in more detail about her tutorial videos. Check out this sample from Tutorial Video 1 to observe Melanie’s teaching style. To see more samples from Melanie’s course please go to her Youtube channel.


Why choose this course?

  • You are learning from a professional player with a lot of experience in performing and educating
  • This online course covers the basics and fundamentals of ‘Cello-playing every student needs
  • It’s gives the student a ‘musical package’ – Musicianship training in addition to learning to play the Cello thoroughly
  • Learn at your own pace, learn at home, and not have to think about travelling
  • Reasonable and affordable monthly cost
  • Watch each tutorial video as many times as you need, and pause/replay parts of it to deepen your understanding
  • Melanie has included two extra videos into both Sets – tuning the Cello yourself, and applying rosin to the bow
  • It offers a thorough, structured, and non-hurried way of learning
  • Melanie is available to answer any queries the student may have (email)


What do you need?  

  • A ‘Cello and bow of suitable size (if the student is a child)
  • Floor stop for the cello endpin (such as the Xeros Cello Endpin Anchor)
  • Good quality Rosin (such as Melos)
  • Music stand (not essential but it helps)
  • A chair of good strength and ideal size/height
  • An ideal space in which to learn


Set 1 contains  

  • 14 Cello Tutorial Videos
  • 2 extra videos: tuning your ‘Cello, and applying rosin to the bow
  • Accompanying documents with homework tasks, hints, and notation of most tasks given – these can be printed off, and enable the student to begin learning to read musical notation
  • Photographs to assist the student with quality posture/positioning of the Cello
  • Photographs of the Endpin Anchor and Rosin I recommend
  • Over 30 small pieces and exercises for the student to learn
  • Musicianship training: Solfa singing & rhythm speaking/tapping work
  • Advice on how to practice
  • Agreement Document with more details, including Terms and Conditions


What is covered in Set 1 for playing ‘Cello?

  • Sitting with the ‘Cello and good posture
  • Getting to know the 4 open strings
  • Learning to read some notation in Bass Clef
  • Left and Right hand plucking
  • Solfa singing and hand signs (ear training/musicianship)
  • Basic rhythm and speaking/tapping it
  • Shifting from 1st to 4th Position
  • Plucking in the 1st & 4th Positions
  • The bow hold (hand shape)
  • Holding the bow
  • Bow arm method
  • Bowing open strings
  • Bowing basic rhythms and writing them
  • Crossing the string
  • Plucking while bowing



About Musicianship and Solfa Singing

Musicianship is very important for every student learning a musical instrument. It is having an understanding of the musical language overall. Good Musicianship skills enable the student to fully understand what they are playing, and this directly supports and strengthens instrumental playing. Therefore, Melanie has included Solfa singing (doh, re, mi, etc) with hand signs and rhythm-speaking/tapping into many of these Tutorial Videos. Your voice is your primary instrument, therefore doing some singing is very supportive towards smooth/satisfying progress. Solfa singing allows the student to gradually develop an inner-hearing (the ability to hear notes/pitches in their head accurately), meaning that the student will be able to play in tune sooner on their instrument. Solfa singing also enables the student to play pieces physically more fluently. The speaking/tapping of rhythm enables the student to become physically more in control of pulse & rhythm while playing a piece of music. Overall, good musicianship results in the player becoming musically expressive sooner, and to connect with their instrument and pieces more easily. There are many other benefits too, which Melanie has experienced herself. Some of these are; developing a good musical memory (therefore being able to perform without sheet music), increasing self-confidence in playing skills (i.e. knowing where notes are on the ‘Cello rather than having to search for them), hearing pieces internally while playing them, reading ahead, stimulating an interest in improvising and composing, and a general soothing feeling in the mind. Hand signs for the Solfa’s are usually meant for children, however adult students can still do hand signs if they wish. Melanie encourages all students to do some Solfa singing, Rhythm speaking and tapping of pulse. This to enables the student’s musical journey to be smoother all-round and reduce potential frustration/barriers.



Set 2 contains:

  • 16 Cello Tutorial Videos
  • Video on how to tune the ‘Cello
  • Video on how to apply rosin to the bow
  • Accompanying documents with homework tasks, hints, and notation of most tasks given
  • Over 50 small pieces, exercises and scales to learn
  • A famous piece by Beethoven to learn (last 2 videos)
  • More Musicianship training: Solfa singing
  • Advice on how to practice
  • Agreement Document including Terms and Conditions


What’s covered in Set 2 for playing ‘Cello?

  • Bowing Natural Harmonics with different left hand fingers
  • More Musicianship/ear training: Solfa singing
  • Stopping the String with left hand fingers (i.e. pressing the string down)
  • Playing in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Positions with left hand
  • Scale of G Major
  • Scale of D Major
  • Scale of C Major
  • Playing a rising and falling pattern
  • Learning a famous melody by Beethoven