Plucking the string, as opposed to bowing (arco). Notated pizz. Players may put the bow down for extended pizzicato passages.
G3 Bb3 Db4 C5 E5 Bb5 B5 G6

snap pizz. (Bartok pizz.)

Pulling the string upwards and allowing it to 'snap' sharply against the fingerboard. Notated snap pizz. Often used by Béla Bartók, hence the nickname.
Snap pizz:
G3 Bb3 Db4 E5 Bb5

nail pizz.

Plucking with the fingernail. Notated: nail pizz. Best avoided on the violin, because most violinists cut their fingernails.
Nail pizz:



pizzicato tremolo

Rapid motion of the finger against the string. Notated pizz trem. Tiring to execute for long periods on the violin and an uncontrolled effect.
Pizzicato tremolo.


Plucked glissando, notated gliss pizz. Note that it is possible to make a gliss away from an open string.
G3 Bb3 Db4 C5 F5

quasi guitar

Violin held sideways against the body and strummed. Notated quasi guitar. Make sure the chord shapes are simple!
quasi guitar (i)
quasi guitar (ii)

left hand pizz

Plucked with left hand rather than bowing hand. Notated with a + over the note. Use with extreme caution. The fingerings need to be very carefully considered.

The Orchestra: A User's Manual is a free resource and will remain so. It still receives between 8,000 and 16,000 unique visits per month from all over the world. See the testimonials. Thanks to all the donations, I have been able to create this responsive re-design. But the movies and sound clips recorded in 2004 do show their age. I would really like to re-record everything and add many more techniques, especially for solo and ensemble writing. I estimate this will cost around £30,000. If you know a source of such funds, please contact me: a.hugill [at] bathspa.ac.uk