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#1085447 - 12/02/08 01:53 PM Remedial class...  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 2,024
SAnnM AB 2001 Offline
2000 Post Club Member
SAnnM AB 2001  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 2,024
Canada
I think maybe I've reached my potential.

This doesn't really upset me. It's sort of a relief. I've been working on grade 7 and 8 pieces occasionally but struggle. My latest grade 7/8 piece we are 'putting on hold.' I'm not discouraged (not really...well maybe just a little). I'd rather play a grade 5/6 piece very well than mangle a more advanced piece. I think I'd actually like to stick with these easier pieces - for a while at least.


It's the journey not the destination..
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#1085448 - 12/02/08 02:12 PM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 3,605
TrapperJohn Offline
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TrapperJohn  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 3,605
Chocolatetown, USA
Two steps forward, one step backward - nothing wrong with going "back" and regrouping and "shoring up your base" - this doesn't imply that you've "reached your potential" - you may never reach that - spend some time working on the grade 5/6 pieces you're familiar with, add some new ones, get them reasonably "mastered" and then return to the grade 7/8 stuff again, maybe some different pieces - if that works then great! If not, do it again - until you "break thru".

My impression is that learning a very specialized skill like playing the piano happens in stages where your skills increase for awhile, and then you reach a plateau and level off, and stay there for some time, and head back uphill again - but sometimes you have to back up a little to "get up a head of steam" for that next uphill surge.

As my old football coach used to tell us (when we were getting our butts kicked) "When the going gets tough, the tough get going"!

Regards, JF


Every difficulty slurred over will be a ghost to disturb your repose later on. Frederic Chopin

Current favorite bumper sticker: Wag more, bark less.
#1085449 - 12/02/08 02:40 PM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 921
Lisztener Offline
500 Post Club Member
Lisztener  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 921
Sandy,

Good for you! smile There is much beauty and many challenges within the large choice comprising level 5/6 pieces. I'm sure that you have thought through your situation to come to the conclusion that struggling with higher level pieces can wait for a while as you enjoy the less complex levels for you.

Given your talent, I can enjoy anything you wish to play and share.

Best of luck with your decision regardless of how it may fit within your potential. thumb

Sincerely,

Lisztener



#1085450 - 12/02/08 05:33 PM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,154
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012
Monica K.  Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,154
Lexington, Kentucky
Sounds like a very sensible attitude, Sandy. thumb I have always believed that for us Adult Beginners, piano is a hobby and should be a source of pleasure and reward, not pain. As long as I have a stack of sheet music a yard high that I am yearning to learn how to play that is within my current abilities, it bothers me very little that I can't play more advanced stuff.

Work on what you enjoy and what you can feel good about mastering. smile


Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
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#1085451 - 12/02/08 09:33 PM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 1,550
NancyM333 Offline
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NancyM333  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 1,550
Roswell, Georgia
Sandy, it sounds like you've really had an epiphany without too much sadness. I used to be discouraged by all that I couldn't play until a teacher asked me how much I practiced. When I told him an hour a day--an amount I think is heroic considering I have kids at home, a job, etc.--he said that wasn't nearly enough time for the level of pieces I was playing. There wasn't any guilt there, just the fact that difficult pieces take a lot of time and patience.

I find I make more true progress on easier pieces. I can focus on tone and tempo and other things besides "will I actually hit all the correct notes?"

You may change your mind after a while, but we all have to find the mix of pieces that gives us the most satisfaction. I know when I hear other people play, I much more enjoy a simple piece played well than a difficult one played poorly. For myself, playing well--no matter what the level of the piece--is very satisfying. The pieces you've posted show you are accomplishing that, and I am glad you're not feeling pressure to keep moving up.

Nancy



Estonia 168, Yamaha UX3
#1085452 - 12/02/08 10:33 PM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 2,024
SAnnM AB 2001 Offline
2000 Post Club Member
SAnnM AB 2001  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 2,024
Canada
I'm a little frustrated that I'm not progressing as fast as I would like. I practice a lot (a couple of hours most days) but still seem to be treading water right now. I know that plateaus help solidify technique from time to time so I'm trying my best to be patient. I need to find pieces that are harder than a two or three week project but not 6 months or a year... I'll discuss this with my teacher next lesson.

Quote
As long as I have a stack of sheet music a yard high that I am yearning to learn how to play that is within my current abilities, it bothers me very little that I can't play more advanced stuff.
Part of my problem is that I have all this beautiful music at home. A lot that is above my level, some that is not challenging enough, and also a lot that I'm sure is very doable - classical, jazz, pop and folk....... sorting it out and creating that stack of attainable pieces is a challenge in itself!!


It's the journey not the destination..
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#1085453 - 12/03/08 11:36 AM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,614
IrishMak Offline
1000 Post Club Member
IrishMak  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,614
New Hampshire, USA
I'm also quite happy with where I am right now. I may never get out of the "easy piano" books, but, you know what? That's fine with me. There's a ton of music out there that I love and want to play, and if it isn't super-difficult, that's ok. I find that when I try to push too hard, and struggle with things too far above my current ability, I get really frustrated and upset with myself and have, on occasion, found myself not wanting to touch the piano for days because of the pressure I put on myself. And that's not why I began to play, so I'm just going to do what I can, and be happy enjoying that.


-Mak

1889 Mason & Hamlin screwstringer upright
Kawai MP-4 digital

---------------------------
When life hands you lemons, throw them back and add some of your own. Stupid life.
#1085454 - 12/03/08 11:59 AM Re: Remedial class...  
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 476
FormerFF Offline
Full Member
FormerFF  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 476
Roswell, GA, USA
Quote
Originally posted by NancyM333:
Sandy, it sounds like you've really had an epiphany without too much sadness. I used to be discouraged by all that I couldn't play until a teacher asked me how much I practiced. When I told him an hour a day--an amount I think is heroic considering I have kids at home, a job, etc.--he said that wasn't nearly enough time for the level of pieces I was playing. There wasn't any guilt there, just the fact that difficult pieces take a lot of time and patience.

I find I make more true progress on easier pieces. I can focus on tone and tempo and other things besides "will I actually hit all the correct notes?"

You may change your mind after a while, but we all have to find the mix of pieces that gives us the most satisfaction. I know when I hear other people play, I much more enjoy a simple piece played well than a difficult one played poorly. For myself, playing well--no matter what the level of the piece--is very satisfying. The pieces you've posted show you are accomplishing that, and I am glad you're not feeling pressure to keep moving up.

Nancy
An hour a day IS a heroic amount considering your other responsibilities. laugh


Piano self teaching on and off from 2002-2008. Took piano instruction from Nov 2008- Feb 2011. Took guitar instruction Feb 2011-Jul 2013. Can't play either. Living, breathing proof some people aren't cut out to make music.

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