How Do I Finger F-Sharp Minor on a Cello Up to Three Octaves?

Learning to play minor scales on the cello takes patience, practice and a good ear. When learning where notes are located on the instrument, the student starts by playing scales, because the patterns in the scale make it easier to identify incorrect finger spacing. As the notes ascend in pitch, the cellist moves his hand toward the bridge. As the notes descend in pitch, he moves his hand away from the bridge. With practice, you will be able to play an F-sharp minor scale on the cello.

Step 1

Hold the cello properly with the stand

Step 2

Memorize fingerings for the cello. Cello fingerings are numbered one through four and refer to the fingers of your left hand. The number one indicates the index finger should be used, two indicates the middle finger, three indicates the ring finger, and four indicates the pinky.

Step 3

Play the first octave of the harmonic minor scale by using the following fingerings: 1-3-4-1-3-4-1. When you cross from three to one, slide down the string to the position just below where the index finger was. Like with all string-playing, listen carefully to learn where the position falls on the cello.

Step 4

Perform the second octave by continuing to crawl down the cello toward the bridge and using the fingerings: 2-4-0-1-3-1-4. The zero indicates an open string.

Step 5

Sound the third octave by using the following fingering: 1-2-1-2-1-2-1. End on the third octave F-sharp with fingering 2.

Step 6

Proceed back down the harmonic minor scale by going in reverse and moving incrementally away from the bridge.


To play the natural and melodic minor scales, use a cello fingering chart.


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