You should start taking lessons at your youngest age. You don’t have to get a formal violin lesson. You can play and play on the violin yourself, even when you’re in your 20s. The difference between a formal teacher and a casual musician is the student gets more control and flexibility.
But even if you feel that you can play and you haven’t done any of the steps in an audition, don’t be discouraged if you feel there is too little left to improve. There’s no reason why you have to learn so much right away. Just play the first six months of lessons in the following order:
Sensory Learning: Begin with simple pieces that are easy for you to remember and a minimum of technical difficulties like scales, triplets and minor chords. You should have little trouble playing these pieces; don’t worry if the notation is not as clear as you’d like. This will give you enough foundation to concentrate on improving your technique. If you have a lot of time on your hands, go with the beginner’s option. Develop your technique: If you’re still under 18, you should start playing faster, slower and even rhythmically simpler compositions. Play short, simple music: The longer the piece, the harder it will be to learn. If you just play fast melodies, then you might find yourself bored with the same pieces a lot sooner than you’d like and that may lead to overplaying the same music over time. The other option is starting with pieces that make you feel warm, relaxed and content to play the entire piece. These pieces will give you less pressure to go faster. If you have little time to devote to learning new pieces, find shorter pieces that you like. You may also be able to play more in the short pieces than you can in longer pieces if you learn them slowly. Improve technique and skills: By playing with more difficulty, you will make your performance more memorable. This will allow you to find new techniques from your lessons and get more feedback on your technique.
For me, learning violin is all about developing my technique and getting my fingers to play in a more rhythmic way. At the first violin lesson, I would play a piece at first and then make sure I could really see and feel the piece. Every time I made a mistake, I would start over again. By focusing on each instrument (sailor’s violin, cello, and violin), I could focus on each piece better at the same time I could keep learning the other pieces.