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Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Damon] #2276372 05/15/14 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.


What, you don't agree that Argerich was already practicing scales at least six years before she was born, and working really, really hard during those years prior to being concieved?

Well, if you think that way, I guess you'll never publish in Scientific American (btw, it just occurred to me that the title of that rag may be oxymoronic, in the vast majority of cases).

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Re: Prodigies????? [Re: wr] #2276379 05/15/14 08:01 AM
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Francisco Scalco Offline
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Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.


What, you don't agree that Argerich was already practicing scales at least six years before she was born, and working really, really hard during those years prior to being concieved?

Well, if you think that way, I guess you'll never publish in Scientific American (btw, it just occurred to me that the title of that rag may be oxymoronic, in the vast majority of cases).


Argerich has already stated she never practiced technique. Scales, arpeggios... she never done this. She only plays music. When she was very little she did some exercises for finger independence, but always within the repertoire she was playing.
Pretty impressive.

Re: Prodigies????? [Re: wr] #2276399 05/15/14 08:48 AM
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Old Man Offline
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Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.

What, you don't agree that Argerich was already practicing scales at least six years before she was born, and working really, really hard during those years prior to being concieved?

thumb Bingo! I'm sure she was thinking in her pre-existent state, "I know I can do it! I want to do it! I must focus, focus, focus! Gee, I'd really love to ... No, not now! Delay gratification!" And I have no doubt that Cziffra at 4, Gould at 4, Arrau at 5, had these very same thoughts.

I'm still waiting for an example of a famous pianist who took the long route, and possessed the 4 attributes described by phantomFive and Derulux. Just an average Joe, who maybe started lessons at 6 or 7, continued his musical training through high school and college, and came out a concert pianist in his mid-twenties simply through years of hard work, determination, and sheer will power. We can argue science all day long, but it would still be nice to have a few examples of people who simply "willed" themselves to greatness.

Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Francisco Scalco] #2276420 05/15/14 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Francisco Scalco
Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.


What, you don't agree that Argerich was already practicing scales at least six years before she was born, and working really, really hard during those years prior to being concieved?

Well, if you think that way, I guess you'll never publish in Scientific American (btw, it just occurred to me that the title of that rag may be oxymoronic, in the vast majority of cases).


Argerich has already stated she never practiced technique. Scales, arpeggios... she never done this. She only plays music. When she was very little she did some exercises for finger independence, but always within the repertoire she was playing.
Pretty impressive.

If you want to understand how this is possible, look at the teachings of Abby Whiteside.


Poetry is rhythm
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Old Man] #2276422 05/15/14 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Old Man

I'm still waiting for an example of a famous pianist who took the long route

Instead of waiting, go look for it. Stop being lazy, you'll find it.


Poetry is rhythm
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: phantomFive] #2276429 05/15/14 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by phantomFive
Originally Posted by Old Man

I'm still waiting for an example of a famous pianist who took the long route

Instead of waiting, go look for it. Stop being lazy, you'll find it.

I think Atrys may have already copyrighted that advice. But I'm too lazy to verify it.

Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Old Man] #2276435 05/15/14 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Old Man
I'm too lazy to verify it.

I know


Poetry is rhythm
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Fiona0424] #2276437 05/15/14 10:27 AM
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The temperature in this thread is reaching boiling point.


Regards,

Polyphonist
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Fiona0424] #2276446 05/15/14 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Old Man

it would still be nice to have a few examples of people who simply "willed" themselves to greatness.

Anyone who has acquired significant proficiency in some skill has "willed" it in some way, to some magnitude. This is another place where genes (and environment) have a lot of say, that is: how quickly and with how much ease is the skill acquired?

Assuming equivalent maximum genes bounds (to simplify this case), some people, due to their genes or environment/methods, will take much longer or shorter with much more or less effort than others to acquire the skill. People who are identified as "child prodigies" may (and it is not unreasonable to say they did) have had genes that led to the quicker acquisition of piano play compared to the mean; but of course, environmental factors and methods are key here too.

For any given task, I can imagine this sort of thing approaching a normal distribution.


"A good intention but fixed and resolute - bent on high and holy ends, we shall find means to them on every side and at every moment; and even obstacles and opposition will but make us 'like the fabled specter-ships,' which sail the fastest in the very teeth of the wind."
R. W. Emerson
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Fiona0424] #2276453 05/15/14 10:46 AM
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Arnaldo Cohen started to study intensively and seriously when he was 19 years old. He proceeded to win the Busoni competition a few years later. He was already studying music since he was a child, but had never gathered attention from anyone. What changed when he was 19 was his focus.
There's another example on the arthur rubinstein competition this year. The first pianist to play on the first stage has admitted on those backstage conversations that he started to "have fun" at the keyboard when he was 7. He didn't call that studying.

There you have it. Two examples that, although different, showcase the existence of different paths towards a concert career.

Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Damon] #2276488 05/15/14 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.

You are right, it was a journalist reporting on years of scientific effort, summarized simply so busy people like you don't have to go out and read all the papers yourself.

Of course, you can look at the scientific papers if you want to, it's hard work (which is why Atrys doesn't do it) and you will find that "The preponderance of psychological evidence indicates that experts are made, not born".


Poetry is rhythm
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Atrys] #2276489 05/15/14 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Atrys
Originally Posted by Old Man

it would still be nice to have a few examples of people who simply "willed" themselves to greatness.

Anyone who has acquired significant proficiency in some skill has "willed" it in some way, to some magnitude. This is another place where genes (and environment) have a lot of say, that is: how quickly and with how much ease is the skill acquired?

Assuming equivalent maximum genes bounds (to simplify this case), some people, due to their genes or environment/methods, will take much longer or shorter with much more or less effort than others to acquire the skill. People who are identified as "child prodigies" may (and it is not unreasonable to say they did) have had genes that led to the quicker acquisition of piano play compared to the mean; but of course, environmental factors and methods are key here too.

For any given task, I can imagine this sort of thing approaching a normal distribution.

I agree that the will, the hard work, the determination, plus a whole host of environmental factors are absolutely essential to producing a great pianist.

All I've ever said is that there are limits to what we can accomplish. I think you used the term "maximal bounds", and so I think we may agree on this. Just because I want to be a concert pianist, am willing to practice 25 hours a day, delay gratification, etc. does not mean that I can. Eventually I may or may not run up against these genetic boundaries. But if I do, I cannot simply "will" myself past them. And if I did push through, then they weren't real to begin with, but self-imposed boundaries of my own making.

Francisco, I like your example of Arnaldo Cohen. It illustrates what I've said before that this "natural" or "innate" talent is not limited to children. He begins to study "intensively and seriously" at age 19, and a "few years later" wins the Busoni competition. It's the "few years later" that is key. The rate of skills acquisition was still very rapid. Which would suggest that his genetic "maximal boundaries" (to use Atrys' term) were fairly wide. But if I had got serious about music at age 19, the results would have been unremarkable, because my own maximal bounds are quite narrow. (Or maybe I'm just lazy.) grin

Originally Posted by Polyphonist
The temperature in this thread is reaching boiling point.

You wish. Stop messing with the stove! laugh

Last edited by Old Man; 05/15/14 11:57 AM.
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: phantomFive] #2276496 05/15/14 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by phantomFive
Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.

You are right, it was a journalist reporting on years of scientific effort, summarized simply so busy people like you don't have to go out and read all the papers yourself.

Of course, you can look at the scientific papers if you want to, it's hard work (which is why Atrys doesn't do it) and you will find that "The preponderance of psychological evidence indicates that experts are made, not born".


We were talking about prodigies, not experts. These aren't synonyms. I'm certain that I could convince most non-musicians that I'm an expert pianist. That aside, it is quite possible for me to read the same papers as this journalist and conclude something somewhat different. The problem is that hazy, unmeasured area of "must have made an equivalent effort", that resists measurement. We made a word, talent, to describe it.

Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Fiona0424] #2276518 05/15/14 12:58 PM
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Yes, I think it's clear to us that phantomFive's position is plainly unscientific. It may even be anti-scientific. There's no sense in trying to educated him; he is not even putting in the effort to properly understand the opposing stance (which is the correct one). phantomFive, it bears repeating, please finish high school first.

Last edited by Atrys; 05/15/14 12:58 PM.

"A good intention but fixed and resolute - bent on high and holy ends, we shall find means to them on every side and at every moment; and even obstacles and opposition will but make us 'like the fabled specter-ships,' which sail the fastest in the very teeth of the wind."
R. W. Emerson
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Fiona0424] #2276522 05/15/14 01:06 PM
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Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Damon] #2276524 05/15/14 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
Originally Posted by Damon
Originally Posted by phantomFive
In fact, it takes approximately a decade of heavy labor to master any field. Even child prodigies, such as Gauss in mathematics, Mozart in music, and Bobby Fischer in chess, must have made an equivalent effort, perhaps by starting earlier and working harder than others.


Really? I don't think a scientist wrote that.

You are right, it was a journalist reporting on years of scientific effort, summarized simply so busy people like you don't have to go out and read all the papers yourself.

Of course, you can look at the scientific papers if you want to, it's hard work (which is why Atrys doesn't do it) and you will find that "The preponderance of psychological evidence indicates that experts are made, not born".


We were talking about prodigies, not experts. These aren't synonyms. I'm certain that I could convince most non-musicians that I'm an expert pianist. That aside, it is quite possible for me to read the same papers as this journalist and conclude something somewhat different. The problem is that hazy, unmeasured area of "must have made an equivalent effort", that resists measurement. We made a word, talent, to describe it.

You might be right, maybe there is a thing called 'talent' that some people have, that others don't. That is a reasonable hypothesis.

Now, if you remember the scientific method from high school, do you remember the next step after developing a hypothesis? Maybe Atrys knows, since he's graduated from high school.


Poetry is rhythm
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Fiona0424] #2276527 05/15/14 01:17 PM
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@phantomFive
Do you realize we're in agreement on skill acquisition? It's just that some people learn quicker at certain things than others. Do you repudiate this?


"A good intention but fixed and resolute - bent on high and holy ends, we shall find means to them on every side and at every moment; and even obstacles and opposition will but make us 'like the fabled specter-ships,' which sail the fastest in the very teeth of the wind."
R. W. Emerson
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: Atrys] #2276599 05/15/14 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Atrys
@phantomFive
Do you realize we're in agreement on skill acquisition? It's just that some people learn quicker at certain things than others. Do you repudiate this?

Learning quickly is just another skill that can be learned. By the time you graduate from the university, you'll be able to learn faster than you do now.


Poetry is rhythm
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: phantomFive] #2276620 05/15/14 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by phantomFive

Learning quickly is just another skill that can be learned. By the time you graduate from the university, you'll be able to learn faster than you do now.

I'm curious.
How does one learn the skill to learn to play the piano faster, so that one can acquire a virtuoso technique within, say, three years - like so many piano prodigies do?

I've got a couple of university degrees (not in music), and a diploma in piano performance, but I still haven't learnt the skill to learn quickly so that I can acquire a virtuoso technique by my present age (which is positively ancient, as of today grin).

If you could enlighten me, it would be much appreciated. I'm not asking for much - I just want to play Rach 3 like a true virtuoso.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Prodigies????? [Re: bennevis] #2276628 05/15/14 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by bennevis
[quote=phantomFive]

by my present age (which is positively ancient, as of today grin).



Happy Birthday?


Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci
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