17 Best Online Violin Lessons, Courses and Apps: REALLY learn to play!
Violin teacher recommends online violin lessons that actually work
The violin is a difficult and sensitive instrument to learn, but also one of the most expressive instruments and very rewarding to learn.
Especially if you’re looking for (adult) beginner violin lessons online, it’s important that you learn a good basic technique so you can play in tune and make a beautiful sound.
Are you looking for ways to improve, stay motivated, and learn more about your instrument, but without leaving your own home? One incredible advantage we have over violinists 200 years ago is the internet. No matter how far along you are in your violin journey, you can always find inspiration from the phenomenal resources, lessons, and performances online. Here I’ve compiled just a small slice of the most popular web sites. This is particularly for beginner violinists in mind, but players of all levels can learn from these resources.
Can you really learn to play the violin online?
Distance learning in music is hundreds of years old. For example the violinist Tartini wrote letters to his students with hints to improve their violin playing. From this resulted his famous book ‘the art of bowing’ that has benefited violin players over the world for centuries.
You can combine online violin lessons and resources with traditional ‘offline’ violin lessons or learn on your own. Especially for self led adults who don’t have the ambition to become professional musicians, it’s perfectly possible to learn to play the violin online.
Free and paid online violin lessons
In this top 17 I will discuss free as well as paid, cheap and expensive options to learn to play the violin. In this day and age there are thousands of free YouTube violin lessons and tons of free resources. Money doesn’t have to be a problem of you’re determined to learn the violin.
Let’s start with our top 3 online violin lessons!
Below is a quick guide to our three top picks when it comes to online violin lessons, courses and apps. After that I will discuss the 17 best online violin lessons in detail.
Best violin lesson videos
This website has a wonderful library of lesson videos (masterclasses) for a variety of level of players and by famous violinists like Leonidas Kavakos. They have wonderful courses on Bach’s Sonatas and Partitas and Paganini Caprices, but also cover more basic techniques like a vibrato trainer and an intermediate course about bowing technique. Their videos on Kreutzer etudes are valuable even for children who have violin lessons.
With subscription options of around $ 19 they are one of the most affordable academies with a very high level of quality and an enormous video lesson library.
Join and use coupon VIOLINLOUNGE20 for 20% off.
Best violin sheet music app
If you’re looking for violin sheet music and an effective way to practice, take a look at the app Tomplay. You can use it on desktop (Apple as well as Windows), Android devices and Apple devices like a smartphone or tablet.
They have a library of 60,000 sheet music arrangements, so the piece you’re practicing or song you’d like to play is probably in there: violin etudes, simple pieces, movie tunes, pop music and classical repertoire. You can play the violin, the accompaniment or both at any speed and use handy tools like a metronome.
Join and use coupon VIOLINLOUNGE30 for 30% off.
Best 1-1 live violin lessons
Play with a Pro
Play with a Pro is a platform where you can find your next violin teacher suitable for your level of playing. If you find it hard to find a local teacher, definitely check them out.
They not only provide a connection with your teacher, but you can schedule a lesson directly and use their software for the best performing video and audio during your live 1-1 violin lesson.
Videos and fancy apps are great, but in the end everyone who wants to learn to play the violin at a certain level needs live 1-1 lessons.
The quality of the teachers you’ll find at Play with a Pro is great: seasons professional orchestra players, soloists and sought after teachers.
Best online violin lessons for beginner violinists
If you’re just starting out on the violin, all the courses, websites and apps on this page might seem very overwhelming. A great place to start is my free 40 lesson violin beginner course. This takes you from scratch (pun intended) to your first violin concerto with basic technique, scales, etudes and wonderful pieces. This course offers more value than many paid courses. Sign up right here.
From the selection on this page, consider the Suzuki violin lessons at Learn Violin Online and the complete lessons inside Violin Lab. The website Violinspiration is aimed at adult beginner violinists and offers many free video lessons as well as a paid academy. If you want to connect to a teacher and have 1-1 live lessons, consider the Trala app.
Mind that these options are mainly suitable for adult beginner violinists. For children I recommend to get a local teacher.
Top 17 online violin lessons, websites and teachers
Tonebase is similar to iClassical Academy but provides a broader range of topics and levels. Like iClassical, the teachers are all high-caliber violinists such as Augustin Hadelich, Stefan Jackiw, and Nancy Zhou. Many of these video lessons are applicable to beginners and include very helpful exercises. Categories include technique and skills, theory and musicianship, interviews, and masterpieces of the repertoire. In weekly live workshops, you can ask instructors your questions in real time. Every lesson comes with pdf resources such as workbooks and annotated scores. The online community supports each other and provides feedback. Tonebase even invests in education by giving a 30% discount to current students and educators.
Free: Youtube videos (a different channel for each instrument i.e. Tonebase Violin), three free video lessons, unlimited access with 14-day free trial
Subscriptions: $49/month, $299/year, $695/lifetime
Detailed videos and course with sheet music, live advice from top musicians, interactive online community
Tonebase is more expensive than other online lessons and does not provide different levels of membership. Also, the courses are not organized pedagogically so this would not be the best choice if you are looking for very structured step-by-step guidance.
With Learn Violin Online, you can access online courses, sheet music, and materials to progress in your violin studies. The courses are available 24/7 and there is no timeline to finish them, so you ned not feel rushed. There are different packages available depending on your needs, starting at $37/month. There is also an instagram account with lots of fingering tutorials on easy pieces.
Free: Instagram playalong tutorials, free beginner violin course, free vibrato course
$37/month: Access to all digital courses and the community
$57/month: All digital courses, the community, and video exchange feedback (asynchronous)
Individual courses are also available for purchase.
Sample courses/videos you can try for free, supportive online community and lots of options between membership, short affordable courses and private lessons. Meghan is friendly person and a great violin teacher.
Meghan is the only teacher on this platform.
You’ve heard me talk about TomPlay before if you’re familiar with my channel. It is not exactly a lessons resource, but an extremely helpful sheet music app with over 60,000 arrangements. On TomPlay you can find professional recordings of piano accompaniments to pieces you’re learning, so you can practice it with piano. A handy feature is that you can even set the recording at different speeds so you’re not racing to catch up! The site features classical music as well film music and even rock. There’s a huge selection, so whether you want to play Vivaldi’s Four Seasons or the theme from Titanic, TomPlay can help you make practicing more engaging.
Use the coupon VIOLINLOUNGE30 for 30% off your yearly subscription.
Free: 14-day free trial, blog articles
$15/month: Unlimited access to entire score library
If you only want to practice a particular thing and don’t want to pay monthly, you can also just purchase individual scores.
Only pay for what you need, available on any device. The scores scroll as you play, and you can make your own markings on the score and print it out. You can also set the track to help you practice one passage in a loop.
Since it is a sheet music app, there are no tutorials. Also, if you wish to practice from the sheet music without the accompaniment, that can be difficult as there are no pedals to flip the pages. However, you can always print the music out instead.
Teaching violin to 3-5 year-olds requires a lot of patience and dedication. Usually, the methods you’ve learned for older children just won’t work. Why? It’s simple: kids this age just want to play! They are incredibly brilliant and will absorb anything, but they are far more likely to stay engaged when play is involved. Through videos, books, and props, Stringosaurus turns practice time into a fun and hilarious story that also teaches basic violin and general music skills. If you’re hitting against a wall struggling to teach these amazing tiny students, try a new approach by checking out what Stringosaurus can offer.
Pricing: $24/month (for annual subscription): Membership in the Stringosaurus Resource Hub, with over 80 high quality resources and more being added, and online community support. Resources can also be purchased individually.
Creative approach to early childhood musicianship, engaging games, easy-to-use platform, works well as a supplement or on its own.
This website is aimed at violin teachers who teach very young children. This is not for players who are self learning.
Takelessons is an online tutoring platform that helps students connect with teachers for one-on-one instruction. There are hundreds of violin tutors on this site, who set their own rates starting as low as $15. On a tutor’s profile you can view information about their background, any music degrees/performance experience they have, reviews from other students, and even videos of their own playing. When you find a tutor you’re interested you can message them right away to set up a lesson. You may find a tutor you love right away and want to keep working with them, or you might have to look around for a bit and try different people. This site is an easy way to connect with talented teachers all over the world. The only drawback is that Takelessons does not vet their teachers very much, so even if there are dozens of musicians with fantastic performance resumes it may take a while to find one who is also a good teacher.
Pricing: Pricing varies as the teachers set their own rates, but ranges between $15 and $100+ per hour. You always pay for lessons in advance.
Live, one-on-one video lessons with the teacher of your choice, ability to try different teachers, no need to travel.
Does not vet teachers very well, complaints about payment, cannot get your money back if you have to cancel less than 24 hours in advance.
#6 Play With a Pro
Playwithapro.com is very similar to Takelessons but with a higher standard for their tutors. They also only focus on music, whereas takelessons is for a variety of topics. The teachers come from around the world and are incredibly accomplished, most of them members of major symphony orchestras or university professors. This also means that the teachers’ rates are higher, averaging between $40 and $100 dollars per lesson. Fortunately many of them offer a free trial lesson where you can get to know each other before making a commitment.
In addition to live video lessons, the website boasts a “masterclass page” where you can watch over 200 hours of recorded instruction from the most successful classical musicians in the world.
Ranges from $45 to $100+ per hour
Guaranteed professional musicians of the highest caliber, many of whom are multilingual, who can provide either regular lessons or a few masterclasses. The site also helps you match to teachers based on your skill level and availability.
Much more expensive than other online options due to the high quality of live lessons with professionals
Trala’s self-stated mission is “to make music education accessible to every single person on earth”. Their online platform is specifically designed for busy adults who don’t have any help to learn an instrument. Designed by professional musicians and endorsed by Joshua Bell, their interactive platform connects students to teachers around the globe. They also advertise themselves as the first major method to prioritize adults.
There are many video lesson platforms, but Trala also boasts advanced online feedback technology. When you practice with the app, it immediately sends back a score on your pitch and tempo, as well as suggestions for how to improve. This is incredibly helpful for beginners who struggle to analyze their mistakes without their teacher. There is also extra video content to watch between lessons.
If you’re interested in a method that has helped 400,000 students around the world, Trala may be a good place to start.
$160/$280: Weekly private lessons (30 minutes or an hour)
$80/$140: Bi-weekly private lessons
$40/$70: Monthly private lessons
Geared toward adult beginners with busy schedules, advanced feedback technology, extra video content.
App can’t give you advice on techniques or how to improve tone quality, doesn’t let you skip songs so that you have to do everything in order.
Stringpedagogy.com is a fantastic free website put together by professors at Indiana University, led by Mimi Zweig who taught Joshua Bell when he was little. Its purpose is to show teachers how to help their young students progress in the most logical way, without skipping anything. However, the explanations and videos are so detailed that older students can learn a lot from using it themselves. It places a special emphasis on proper set-up and relaxed playing. Another unique feature is the “Pre-twinkle” sequence. This is a highly detailed series of little songs and exercises that give a firm foundation in rhythms and fingerings before even starting the first Suzuki book. There are specific instructions for every piece in Suzuki books 1 and 2, videos of sample lessons, technique building exercises, and a graded list of repertoire at the end. Although it is not interactive like some other sites, it is an absolute goldmine of knowledge that can change your playing.
StringPedagogy is a completely free resource.
Complete Pre-Twinkle set-up plan, thorough walk-through of how to teach all the pieces in the first two Suzuki books, teaching demo videos, graded repertoire list, articles on pedagogy for difficult techniques such as shifting and vibrato.
Rather outdated website, not interactive, designed for teachers, lessons on each Suzuki piece can be repetitive (but then again that’s the point)
#9 Daniel Kurganov
Daniel Kurganov is a professional violinist who also reaches out to online audiences. Born in Belarus and raised in Chicago, he studied in Zurich and has released world-premier recordings of living composers. His YouTube channel has over 45,000 subscribers, and he shares deep dives into particular techniques that are challenging for most people. Through his website he also offers online video lessons. He offers either live video lessons, or a system where you can send in a recording and get feedback. I recommend watching his content to learn things from a creative musician who has studied the synthesis of different styles.
Free: Youtube channel
$35: Send a recording to receive feedback
$70: 25-minute live video lesson
$140: Full video lessons or orchestra audition training
Creative, multifaceted advice from a top violinist who is trained in multiple areas, and ability to receive feedback.
Much of this wonderful advice is geared towards advanced players and is not necessarily applicable to the early stages of playing. However, the advice on practicing is helpful for everyone.
#10 Itzhak Perlman Masterclass
Masterclass is a sight where world-famous artists offer their advice for success through a series of videos. One of these is by Itzhak Perlman. He gives insightful details on everything from bowing to vibrato and memorization techniques to building a career. At just $10/month, it is a wonderful supplement for serious students who want to refresh their practice with new ideas from a legend.
Starting at $10/month (billed annually) for all classes and sessions.
Affordable way to learn time-saving tips and incredible stories from a legend. Highly produced videos, structured sequential format.
Non-interactive, not an effective choice for those picking up an instrument for the first time.
This is another website dedicated to adult beginners. Some resources are free while others you pay to unlock. Violinspiration is accompanied by a large YouTube channel full of tutorial videos. The well-organized website includes a violin academy link, a blog, sheet music, videos, and a shop. First-time violinists will find plenty of things on this site to help stay motivated and progressing. Those who want to commit more fully can join the online academy that provides workbooks, practice plans, sheet music, feedback, and live online group classes.
Free: Video lessons on Youtube, some free sheet music, blog, free 3-day bootcamp
$30 (special price): Beginner bootcamp
$65/month: Julia’s Violin Academy membership, with courses, feedback, community, and group classes
Geared toward adults, focuses on community, lots of free or affordable resources, professional feedback.
Only for beginners, does not have different levels of membership depending on your needs.
Nathan Cole is an incredible violinist and teacher who is currently First Associate Concertmaster for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and on faculty for the Colburn Conservatory. His Youtube channel and website are all about revealing the “method behind the mastery”. His gentle, patient personality, sense of humor, and amazing technique make these videos not only informative but enjoyable. He covers a variety of topics including audition prep, bow strokes, vibrato, and tips on specific well-known repertoire. He also has a few online courses, a blog, and a podcast called “Stand Partners for Life” with his wife and fellow violinist Akiko Tarumoto.
Free: Youtube channel, blog, podcast, free download “8 biggest practice mistakes”
$27: Scales: The Road to Repertoire course
Detailed, enjoyable videos pinpointing exactly what people tend to struggle with from someone who has been through it all.
Non-interactive, high level of technical detail meant mostly for advanced violinists (which isn’t to say beginners won’t enjoy it)
#13 iClassical Academy
iClassical Academy is a community of professional music educators and performers who have collaborated on an extensive collection of recorded masterclasses and courses for multiple instruments and even conducting. The teachers are distinguished music professors from all over the world. In the violin section, you will find masterclasses on much of the most challenging violin repertoire including Tchaikovsky’s concerto, Bach sonatas, and Paganini caprices. If you are learning these pieces for the first time, these videos won’t replace a teacher but will help you practice and incorporate fresh ideas. There are also courses on the music industry to give musicians a well-rounded, up-to-date education.
Use the coupon VIOLINLOUNGE20 for 20% off your subscription.
Free: YouTube channel, limited free video library
$24/month, $224/year, $874/lifetime: Unlimited video access
Because it is a masterclass setting, you can see another student trying out the ideas in front of you, which is more helpful than just hearing a teacher talk. The wide variety of professors gives you many different musical ideas.
All the pieces on this site are very advanced, so it is not a good choice for less experienced players. Also, it is just videos and there is no sheet music, store, or direct feedback.
#14 The Online Violin Tutor
With 650,000 subscribers, this is the biggest YouTube channel for the violin. Alison Sparrow has tons of great free resources on her channel including a sequence of beginner lessons, song tutorials, and lots of fun and informative videos discussing things beginner violinists are often concerned about. If you wish to dive deeper than the ten free lessons, she has two additional books of lessons you can purchase. Aside from her YouTube channel she also has a members-only website and an extensive online music shop where you can purchase her technique and method books.
Free: Extensive YouTube channel filled with tutorials, lessons, and beginner violin course
$10/month: Access to 800 pieces of sheet music, 189 violin cover recordings, 66 violin backing tracks, 112 sheets of piano music, free book from Alison’s shop for every 3 months of membershipamsmusicshop.com is where you can find all of Alison’s music books including her multi-level violin and piano courses.
The first level of the violin course is completely free, the YouTube channel includes great info on getting started in violin and practicing, the membership provides lots of sheet music for a low price, the music store is extensive.
Geared only towards beginner and intermediate, no live video lessons.
#15 Violin Lab
Violin Lab is a long-standing and very detailed pedagogical resource for players at multiple levels. The creator, Beth Blackerby, said she felt inspired by her adult violin students but also sensed that they felt “disenfranchised” since most students are children. She wanted t create a comprehensive online course for adults that would provide the feedback, resources, and community they needed to support their enthusiasm. Beth’s program is divided into three levels, and each level is incredibly detailed. It is not just a quick introductory course, rather it is designed to guide you through years of progress.
Each lesson is divided into several sections: left hand technique, right hand technique, tone and intonation, repertoire, and etudes and exercises. During each lesson, you can write notes to automatically put in your online practice journal to help your practice stay organized and productive. There is also a video exchange section where you can send your playing straight to Beth and she will send you a video back with advice. Sheet music comes with every lessons, so you don’t have to worry about buying books. This is probably the most thorough online violin course out there for complete noobies, so definitely check it out!
Free 14-day trial
$49 one-time purchase: Complete practice course guiding you through how to make the most of every minute of playing
$35/month: Basic membership includes access to video lessons, sheet music, play-alongs, and practice plan maker, as well as curating your own resources
$45/month: Basic plan plus monthly video exchange lesson
$75/month: Basic plan plus weekly video exchange lessons
The website also mentions providing lower rates for those with financial hardships. Additionally, the monthly price becomes lower each extra year you are signed up.
Extremely thorough, tons of content, video exchange, closely mirror the structure of traditional lessons, pricing options available.
No live lessons, more expensive than websites that offer shorter beginner courses.
#16 Tonic App
Violinist Ray Chen started creating the Tonic app during covid when he realized that he wanted to create his own classical music community. He knew how lonely practicing can be, especially without the motivation of concerts, so he thought it would be amazing to create a place where people could stay accountable and inspired when practicing. The main feature of the app is that you create a “practice studio” (with a little avatar of you), and put in what you’re working on that day. Other members can drop by to literally hear you play and leave encouraging comments. The app tracks your practice time on your dashboard and leaderboard, and you can set daily goals. As a fun gamification, the more you practice the more clothing items you unlock for your avatar to wear. There are several group chats where members can share about their favorite musical topics.
The app is free with in-app purchases.
Stay accountable in practice, track daily hours, meet other musicians online, support each other with real feedback.
Only a practice tool, not a lesson website. It may not be a good choice for those who are cell-phone addicted or easily distracted while practicing.
#17 Violin Lounge
Well… I couldn’t help mentioning this one! I can’t say Violin Lounge an online blog, Youtube channel and teaching platform run by a professional violinist (yours truly) who wants to help absolutely everyone improve their violin skills, specifically through sharing bowing techniques. The Youtube channel features 1,000+ videos on technique, repertoire, and fun vlogs. The website includes all kinds of courses with awesome guest teachers as well as lots more articles like this one! Violinists of all ages can find inspiration, get questions answered, and obtain direct help from a professional violinist. (forgive my bias)
Violin Lounge offers free resources and paid lifetime access online courses.
Free: Youtube channel, blog (i.e. where you are now), free beginner violin course,
$ 111: Violin Bowing Bootcamp self study course about bowing technique
$1,777: Full Bow Like A Pro course, including 400+ video lessons, video exchange feedback, practice plans, sheet music, and lifetime access
$1,222: Paganini’s Secret violin course, guiding you from a G major scale to Paganini’s 24th caprice without selling your soul to the devil. Includes video exchange feedback.
More in the shop right here!
Hi! I'm Zlata
Classical violinist helping you overcome technical struggles and play with feeling by improving your bow technique.
Lots of free resources and tips, rare but essential focus on right hand (bowing) technique, courses led by multiple teachers, lifetime access to courses and videos.
No live lesson option, no monthly subscription option.
No matter how long you have been playing the violin, you will find something among these resources to help and inspire you.
I’ve tried to give an as accurate possible picture of the online violin lessons, courses, websites and apps out there. If you noticed a mistake or you would like your platform featured, please e-mail us.
How do you take online violin lessons?
If you have used any of them yourself and have additional thoughts, please leave them in the comments for others to learn from!