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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: Palmpirate] #2778980
11/07/18 01:21 PM
11/07/18 01:21 PM
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 118
Salish Sea
Qwerty53 Offline
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Originally Posted by Palmpirate
I only played … my strongest piece, and ‘Wowed’ myself...... if that’s what taking a break does then I’ll take more, well not really, but what a difference. I found myself being much more confident and didn’t mess up, and maybe more importantly, I didn’t worry about the odd missed note or finger placement. I felt much more relaxed and gave myself a smile once I’d finished.


Palmpirate that's good! Isn't it funny how we focus so much on getting the notes right (well, of course we do! and must!) that we somehow fail to notice that what is beginning to take shape under our hands is really musical! I am finding it helpful record my practice often (so I don't worry about whether any particular run-through is "perfect"). When I listen, I often realize that the "clangs" or hesitations that throw me off are really much less noticeable in the overall experience of the piece.

Someone pointed out that if we were giving a speech, no one would be counting the number of times we said "um, ah" or started a sentence and then changed a word or two (well, they might start counting if we did it excessively). People want to hear what we have to say, and people want to hear why we love this music that we are playing. That's what I'm trying to focus on, anyway!

So glad you WOWED yourself!


”Mister Upright,” Yamaha YUS5.
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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: Qwerty53] #2779163
11/08/18 01:14 AM
11/08/18 01:14 AM
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Palmpirate Offline
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Thanks Qwerty53. Love your speech analogy. I can relate to that too and am not nearly so judgmental.
Glad to read you are making progress.
Recording has its own different stresses. I find I almost resent having to spend the time listening through when I could be playing again..... and there’s two types of recording , to capture a performance live, or to get things edited right. Not that I do much of either but what I’ve done has been enough that I’m in no rush to do more.
As a practice tool perhaps if it’s only for short passages I could give it a try again, then there won’t be so much listening involved!


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: Qwerty53] #2779582
11/09/18 03:23 PM
11/09/18 03:23 PM
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Midwest USA
Stubbie Offline
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Originally Posted by Qwerty53
Stubbie, thanks for the words of encouragement!

Interesting that you found the "fresh eye" helpful -- I'm curious to know what kinds of advice you received that helped.
This particular substitute teacher was a former student of my regular teacher, so there wasn't a lot that was different, though he did provide me with some written comments and suggestions for practice. My regular teacher will write comments on the score, or I'll write down the comments, but she doesn't otherwise give me written suggestions to take home. I've had subs in the past that will suggest different fingering and different pedaling; sometimes it's very helpful, other times not.

With the current sub, we worked mainly on a piece that I hadn't yet played for my regular teacher, so we'll see if there are differences. The sub called attention to the melody line in the piece (Debussy's Reverie), which moves between the right and left hands. Bringing out the melody with my left hand is still a work in progress. I can do it with HT scales and arpeggios, but in the heat of playing an actual piece, not so much (though I can do it with my right hand).


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: casinitaly] #2779710
11/10/18 05:46 AM
11/10/18 05:46 AM
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First lesson back after St Goar, two months ago now.
So proud of having actually played there and not making a hash of it!
It has given me a whole new understanding of what playing the piano is all about, and just how long and hard that road to becoming a pianist with a capital P really is.
And there’s no way I could have achieved this without the help of my teacher, my piano guru, someone who has become a dear friend to whom I am tremendously grateful.

What to do next! Well I really want to finish that Chopin Nocturne, No 8, opus 27 no 2.
Now that I really understand what it takes to bring something up to performance level, I am so frustrated with myself. It’s been over a year since I first looked at this, and I still do stupid things, like miss a bass note by a 3rd, or get a sequence incorrect. - No, that A natural comes later, it’s still Ab right now....Augh!
I’ve tried all sorts of tricks to get it into my head, even found an on-line theoretical analysis, figured out the chord sequences myself. And that was a major challenge since it’s over 40 yrs since I studied that stuff.
But do I really need to know all that to play the notes? In the end it’s putting the right fingers on the right notes and voicing the melody or theme wherever it is, and just doing what the score asks you to.
So it’s back to the practice bag of tricks. Ghosting the different notes; playing out the bottom, tops, or middle notes of chords; playing alternate notes in passages and runs starting with the first and then the second note; playing odd rhythms, ta te then te ta etc.
One new suggestion this week, try being an athlete with the left hand. Get the runs as fast as you can, accurately of course, but do interval training, sprint then walk, sprint then walk.....then it will feel leisurely at a gentle tempo.
I don’t know, running a hundred meters never looked so far...... when I used to run and wasn’t too sure, the first thing to do was put on your running shoes, and somehow you get up and run.
So to play the piano, the first thing to do is sit on the bench ........


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: casinitaly] #2781241
8 hours ago
8 hours ago
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Well done, palmpirate!

After an "okay" lesson last night (getting towards the end of Alfred's AIO Book 1), I went through a Chopin prelude my teacher gave me to work on. It's very pretty, short, and well within my skill level. After going through it, he asked me "do you realize how far you've come since you started?" It really made me feel that I am making progress, even when I sometimes think I'm not.

Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: pathguy] #2781247
7 hours ago
7 hours ago
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Midwest USA
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Originally Posted by pathguy
Well done, palmpirate!

After an "okay" lesson last night (getting towards the end of Alfred's AIO Book 1), I went through a Chopin prelude my teacher gave me to work on. It's very pretty, short, and well within my skill level. After going through it, he asked me "do you realize how far you've come since you started?" It really made me feel that I am making progress, even when I sometimes think I'm not.
thumb It is so easy to beat ourselves up and forget how much progress we've made. Bless your teacher for reminding you!


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: Palmpirate] #2781343
3 hours ago
3 hours ago
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Posts: 118
Salish Sea
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Palmpirate it sounds as if you have made a big leap in your musical development!


”Mister Upright,” Yamaha YUS5.
Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: casinitaly] #2781344
3 hours ago
3 hours ago
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Salish Sea
Qwerty53 Offline
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Stubbie, how wonderful to have your teacher acknowledge how far you have come!


”Mister Upright,” Yamaha YUS5.
Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: Qwerty53] #2781351
2 hours ago
2 hours ago
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Posts: 1,916
Midwest USA
Stubbie Offline
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Originally Posted by Qwerty53
Stubbie, how wonderful to have your teacher acknowledge how far you have come!
Thank you for the nice thought, but I was referencing Palmpirate's post where the teacher gave the compliment/encouragement. smile

My teacher does on occasion compliment something I've done. They're not the "nice job" type of compliments (see the Piano Teachers subforum), but hard-earned on my part and I treasure them!


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Re: Achievement of the week - what got you excited? [Re: casinitaly] #2781354
2 hours ago
2 hours ago
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Stubbie, Qwerty53, Pathguy. Thanks for your support here. Let me send my congrats to you too. Chopin may have some 'shorter' pieces but they are no less challenging! And i'ts always easier if you learn them right the first time round. I had terrible teachers when I was a kid so some of those earlier ones for me will take a lot of work to get right. I'd rather do something new even though it is challenging. I don't know those Alfred books I read so many of you follow. Maybe its a trip to the music store to browse through them and know what you are all doing!
Lesson for me tomorrow , Hope you all have a great week at the keys!


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