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Saying hello and an update. #1155810
03/02/09 10:46 AM
03/02/09 10:46 AM
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,990
Haverhill, Massachusetts
J
John Citron Offline OP
3000 Post Club Member
John Citron  Offline OP
3000 Post Club Member
J

Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,990
Haverhill, Massachusetts
Hello everyone! It's been quite a ride so far, and sorry I haven't posted recently; I've been buried with work and school as well as other things. The good news is I'm almost done with school. I have only 4 classes left to my BS in Information Technoogy. Yay, yippie, I can't wait!

My job has turned into a part-time thing, which has put a damper on my budget badly. The company furloughed the employees for the past two weeks. This was like a mini vacation without pay. I was supposed to go back to work today, but due to another 8" of snow I never made it out of the driveway. Next month I'll be part-time for at least a month because there's so little work.

In the mean time I've been job hunting, which has proven to be nothing more than contacting agencies with jobs that pay $5.00 or less an hour than I've been paid for the past 10 years. I could make the same amount of money with the part-time hours and still have the time to do what I want on my two days off.

I of course have been trying to get some piano practice and playing in when I can, but unfortunately my technique is failing slowly but surely. It's now unpredictable, and frustrating to say the least. When I have my good days, I'll put in as much time as I can, but the bad days are worse than ever. I'm losing my coordination and the control when I need it the most. There's nothing worse than having the fingers get confused so that the 2nd finger plays instead of the 5th. This is more so in the left hand now. My right hand is just slow, which slows down everything else in general. There are also those hesitations when the shoulders freeze. These are slight jerking motions that waste milliseconds of time, or a beat in a fast piece. This then throws the momentum and the time off, and then the bigger frustration sets in. Needing to play arpeggios in parallel motion is a disaster for me.

Being what it is, and being that there's nothing much I can do about it, I don't want to waste the little bit of time I have so I'm dealing with this the best I can. I no longer strive for a really fast tempo. I play things at the tempo that I can handle accurately and musically. I'm not saying that I play an Allegro at 56 on the metronome, but it's not 138 or faster either anymore. My accuracy is something I've always taken pride in, and I don't want to let myself down on this. Perhaps I'm being too hard on my self, but heck I always was.

John


Current works in progress:

Beethoven Sonata Op. 10 No. 2 in F, Haydn Sonata Hoboken XVI:41, Bach French Suite No. 5 in G BWV 816

Current instruments: Schimmel-Vogel 177T grand, Roland LX-17 digital, and John Lyon unfretted Saxon clavichord.
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Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: John Citron] #1155816
03/02/09 10:56 AM
03/02/09 10:56 AM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,862
Kansas
apple* Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
apple*  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,862
Kansas
John.. it's nice to hear from you. You've been in my prayers, knowing that you have challenges that all of us fear. Congratulations on your success in school.

may your future treat you well.


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, ├Ľun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: apple*] #1155826
03/02/09 11:16 AM
03/02/09 11:16 AM
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 10,856
London, UK (though if it's Aug...
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
keyboardklutz  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2007
Posts: 10,856
London, UK (though if it's Aug...
Thought of you often. Glad your back.


snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: John Citron] #1155940
03/02/09 02:04 PM
03/02/09 02:04 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,886
San Francisco
whippen boy Offline
3000 Post Club Member
whippen boy  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,886
San Francisco
Good to hear from you!

I don't believe you realize you were the topic of this thread last month - were your ears burning? grin

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: whippen boy] #1155954
03/02/09 02:20 PM
03/02/09 02:20 PM
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 2,618
Geneva, Switzerland
PoStTeNeBrAsLuX Offline
2000 Post Club Member
PoStTeNeBrAsLuX  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 2,618
Geneva, Switzerland
Hi John,

(waves from over the water)

Best of luck with the job-hunting, and glad to hear that you are still enjoying your music despite all the challenges. Keep up the good work!

Michael B.


There are two rules to success in life: Rule #1. Don't tell people everything you know.
Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: PoStTeNeBrAsLuX] #1155969
03/02/09 02:46 PM
03/02/09 02:46 PM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 450
Oh/Fla
playliszt Offline
Full Member
playliszt  Offline
Full Member

Joined: May 2006
Posts: 450
Oh/Fla
The frustrating thing about Life is the fact that when it deals you a really miserable hand, you can't drop out of the game to cut your losses and wait for a better deal. (Well, you can, but then you Never play another hand!)

If our collective empathy could improve your condition, it would have happened already. The best we can do is help out a bit emotionally.

Best of Luck starting now!

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: playliszt] #1155976
03/02/09 02:52 PM
03/02/09 02:52 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,886
San Francisco
whippen boy Offline
3000 Post Club Member
whippen boy  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,886
San Francisco
Originally Posted by playliszt
The frustrating thing about Life is the fact that when it deals you a really miserable hand, you can't drop out of the game to cut your losses and wait for a better deal. (Well, you can, but then you Never play another hand!)


Maybe. wink

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: whippen boy] #1155979
03/02/09 02:56 PM
03/02/09 02:56 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 4,983
boston north
lilylady Offline
4000 Post Club Member
lilylady  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 4,983
boston north
I have been wondering where you disappeared to!

I am sorry to hear about the decline in your playing. You were doing soooo very well the last we heard you in Maine, what was that, last Oct?

Maybe it is off because you have not been able to put as much time in on a regular basis?

Do not get discouraged again. Try to do the pieces that require a little less technically and still will give you satisfaction.

Please keep in touch.

Hey..did you read about the technicians up in Haverhill at MH today? Kenny is there! But had to miss him due to this snowstorm. I think he and Beelady might be getting together very soon later this afternoon if you can email her quickly!

Kenny, if you recall has the concert Bluthner in CA and is now studying to be a tech in Canada.

My best to you as always, John!


"Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."
Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: lilylady] #1156326
03/03/09 03:31 AM
03/03/09 03:31 AM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 9,043
W
wr Offline
9000 Post Club Member
wr  Offline
9000 Post Club Member
W

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 9,043
I'm glad you checked in with us; a few days ago I found myself wondering how you were doing. The school thing sounds great, and it must feel really nice to be so close to finishing. And it is good to hear you are still practicing in spite of the difficulties - sometimes just making the effort counts for a lot.

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: wr] #1156544
03/03/09 02:10 PM
03/03/09 02:10 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,298
Lexington, Kentucky
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012
Monica K.  Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,298
Lexington, Kentucky
Hi John, it's great to hear from you. You have indeed been in our thoughts. Congratulations on your progress toward your degree! smile

Music should be a source of joy for you. Revel in it on your good days, and let it go on the bad days.

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: Monica K.] #1156609
03/03/09 03:56 PM
03/03/09 03:56 PM
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,896
Puyallup, Washington
B
Betty Patnude Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Betty Patnude  Offline
4000 Post Club Member
B

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,896
Puyallup, Washington
John,

What I've always like about your posting about your progress has been how optimistic you are and at the same time objective and accepting. Doing your very best with what you have - isn't that what we all should be doing?

I had to back down from my time at the piano because of several accidents which limited my range of motion and left me with chronic pain. I have never gained my proficiency back because I can't sit and play for more than 15-20 minutes before I have to stop. Being that these problems started in 2000, I have come to quiet but sad acceptance of that, and I am joyful about the times playing does go well for me, I just can't put in the time because it creates pain and a big energy drain.

So, we adapt in some way. It makes what we were able to do even more precious, and that is a good reason to play, perform, record your best moments early in the game and to share all that with others when we are in our prime time.

Teaching has been more comforting to me than ever because the sharing of music and passing the legacy on is another way to participate musically that is very satisfying.

Thank goodness I am able to continue teaching! But, if not, I'd have to redirect to another arena such as so many are doing these days, yourself included, with career changes and finding employment opportunites in today's society and work force.

The Chinese symbol crisis is rooted with the word opportunity.

My continued admiration goes to you for your chosen path, your progress and your very positive attitudes.

Fondly,

Betty

Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: Monica K.] #1156875
03/03/09 11:26 PM
03/03/09 11:26 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 8,961
Phoenix, Arizona
Carey Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Carey  Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 8,961
Phoenix, Arizona
Hi John -

So sorry to hear about your job challenges - but congratulations on your progress toward your degree !!

Please try not to be too hard on yourself when it comes to your piano technique. When you get through school - and resolve your job situation (which I know you will) - the piano will take its rightful place in your life again.

I went for more than 25 years without seriously practicing (job and family demands, lack of a good home instrument, etc. etc.) - yet when I finally purchased a decent grand and started playing six years ago my technique came back. Yours will as well.

Hang in there !!





Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai K-500 Upright
Kawai CA-65 Digital
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo
Re: Saying hello and an update. [Re: Carey] #1156885
03/03/09 11:40 PM
03/03/09 11:40 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 8,961
Phoenix, Arizona
Carey Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Carey  Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 8,961
Phoenix, Arizona
John -

In reading "betweent the lines" of your original post - and the responses of others - it appears that you may be having problems with your technique due to physical challenges of which I'm not aware. If that's the case I apologize if my post didn't address your situation.

It was about 90 degrees in Phoenix today - quite a contrast from what the east coast is experiencing. I'm sure things will look brighter when you aren't dealing with several feet of snow in your driveway.

BEST


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai K-500 Upright
Kawai CA-65 Digital
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

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