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Re: Why do we play? [Re: Whizbang] #2364101
12/21/14 04:11 AM
12/21/14 04:11 AM
Joined: Jun 2013
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New Orleans
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Anne H Offline
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Originally Posted by Whizbang
Originally Posted by Jytte
Why do you play?



Same thing with music. I will listen to piano music. But listening to piano music mostly just makes me want to do piano music, however badly.


Yes, this. I actually don't listen to most of the sorts of things I enjoy playing, except if I'm in "study" mode and working on a piece. I do love discovering new music and being able to sit down and work on something that caught my ear, or at least try to learn it to the best of my ability. I also like the feeling of making progress on something, which is why I don't mind the frustrating parts of it. My husband doesn't get this part - he always comes in and reminds me that I don't have to keep going if I'm not enjoying it. But I enjoy the frustrating parts too, even though I might not love the feeling in that exact moment.


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Rachmaninoff: Prelude Op 23 No 4

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Re: Why do we play? [Re: pianosNpreschooler] #2364154
12/21/14 08:55 AM
12/21/14 08:55 AM
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I LOVE what you said --- 'I play piano because I love music. And when you really,really love something, you can't just look at something, you have to touch it.'

There is NO question, for me, why I play piano. Music nourishes me like nothing else. It's like asking, 'Why do you drink water? Why do you take walks in the park?' Because I NEED to. And what you said about having to touch what we love. That is a HUGE part of musicality, the physical and mental discipline of playing piano is similar to that of athlete's. But I'm going off on a tangent.

Yes, the piano nourishes me, gives back to me so many gifts, such as increased self-confidence and peace. How beautiful!


"I like nonsense. Wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life's realities." -- Dr. Seuss
Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2364603
12/22/14 03:20 PM
12/22/14 03:20 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 6,114
Reseda, California
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1. I like tunes. Of course I can hear tunes played much better than I can in recordings. I listen to recorded music, too. But there's more to it:

2. I like to change things a little bit here and there. Different chords, some decorative stuff between phrases. Only by playing can you try out your own ideas. And there's more than that:

3. In order to play music, you have to concentrate on it completely. Playing gets 100% of my attention, brain power, and physical coordination focused on something I enjoy. I think this is the main and biggest point. And sometimes that's not enough:

4. Going from barely being able to figure out some music to playing it fluently is a challenge. Some people play golf or climb mountains, mostly for the satisfaction that comes from getting measurably better at something. The piano gives you all that plus some melodies to enjoy.



-- J.S.

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Re: Why do we play? [Re: JohnSprung] #2364611
12/22/14 03:44 PM
12/22/14 03:44 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,248
presently Germany (Danish)
Jytte Offline OP
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Jytte  Offline OP
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Originally Posted by JohnSprung

Going from barely being able to figure out some music to playing it fluently is a challenge. Some people play golf or climb mountains, mostly for the satisfaction that comes from getting measurably better at something. The piano gives you all that plus some melodies to enjoy.


Yes, I think you're right, the challenge is a big part of it. The sense of victory when you finally 'conquer' a piece. When after days and days of getting a piece, or even a part of it, put together and you are suddenly able to play it fluently and the way you want... it's like floating on clouds smile And there's always a new challenge ahead, always a new piece waiting. This is why it never gets 'old' or boring.


[Linked Image]XXXVII-XXXVIII
I pray, that tomorrow I may strive to be a little better than I am today - and, on behalf of everybody else, I give thanks for headphones.
Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2364664
12/22/14 06:38 PM
12/22/14 06:38 PM
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I'm not 100% sure why I want to play the piano, but I know it's been my lifelong ambition. I had two or three years of lessons in my teens and early twenties, then life got in the way, I had no access to a piano, and I put it out of my mind. When I got to my 60s I thought it was too late, but an older friend said you're never too old, so I bought a small cheap keyboard and began. I've recently bought a full size digital piano (not expensive but much better than my keyboard) because this is something I am going to be doing for the rest of my life.

One of the reasons why I play is because I like learning pieces of music that I like to listen to. Another is because I really enjoy the challenge of gaining mastery over a piece of music that at first sight looks very complicated and possibly too hard for me. Not that I have ever completely mastered a piece, but I have learnt a few pieces reasonably competently. Another reason is tied to this challenge: I want to keep my mind active for as long as possible, and I've read that playing the piano is excellent for this because of the way it uses different parts of your brain. But even if I didn't think there was much cognitive benefit to playing the piano I think it is something that I would still want to do.

Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2364718
12/22/14 09:14 PM
12/22/14 09:14 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 2,626
Philadelphia area
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Philadelphia area
If I don't play I get grumpy... and I should mention that I refer to my piano as my prayer box.

Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2364763
12/23/14 12:19 AM
12/23/14 12:19 AM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,652
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
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I play because I can't not play. I tried it for a year once, I was miserable.


private piano/voice teacher FT

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Re: Why do we play? [Re: Morodiene] #2364832
12/23/14 08:45 AM
12/23/14 08:45 AM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 626
Eindhoven, The Netherlands
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Originally Posted by Morodiene
I play because I can't not play. I tried it for a year once, I was miserable.


+1

When I try to explain this to others (that don't play any instrument) they don't seem to understand... I only play two times a week on average at the moment and friends think that is a lot.
I get nervous and miserable when I don't have access to a piano. I don't need to play it constantly, being nearby is good enough.

That's also why I love this forum. Fellow sufferers of piano addiction smile


Paul

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Re: Why do we play? [Re: chopinoholic] #2364849
12/23/14 10:13 AM
12/23/14 10:13 AM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,652
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
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Originally Posted by chopinoholic

That's also why I love this forum. Fellow sufferers of piano addiction smile

Haha, love this!


private piano/voice teacher FT

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Re: Why do we play? [Re: Morodiene] #2364960
12/23/14 03:05 PM
12/23/14 03:05 PM
Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 2,182
First Town, First State
BrianDX Offline
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I can't specifically say why I play, only that it is important that I do.


Yamaha C2X | Yamaha M500-F
Groucho Marx: "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others."
Curriculum: Faber Developing Artist (Book 3)
Current: German Dance in D Major (Haydn) (OF); Melody (Schumann) (OF)
Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2364991
12/23/14 04:36 PM
12/23/14 04:36 PM
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 168
Canada
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Canada
I read somewhere that playing an musical instrument is a global process that uses all parts of your brain at once. It is impossible not to be in the moment when playing. We all need more of that.
I find playing (even badly) reduces stress and negative thoughts.


Yamaha LU101, Casio CDP220R. 1968 Mason & Risch 'frankenpiano' only the cat plays. It's where our musical journey began though so I refuse to get rid of it.
Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2365014
12/23/14 05:23 PM
12/23/14 05:23 PM
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I can't really say that I'm addicted to the piano - more that I'm addicted to classical music. There have been years when I did not have any opportunity to touch any keyboard, let alone a piano, yet I barely missed it, because I was always listening to classical music - on the radio especially (24 hours a day via BBC Radio 3), but also on CD, and when I attend concerts.

But when I do come across a piano - any piano, in whatever state of repair (or no repair), or church organ, or a harpsichord or clavichord in a museum - I'm irresistibly drawn to it, and will play it if I'm allowed to. And the music will all come flooding back to me.

Some twelve years ago (which was long before I finally bought my digital in 2010), I was on a two-week coast-to-coast backpacking hike across the Highlands of Scotland with a couple of friends. After a week, we hit civilization for the first time since we started, and spent a night in relative luxury (i.e. not in our tents beside a river up in the mountains) in an old hostel where we could wash our filthy clothes at last, and dry out properly grin. (It rains a lot in Scotland).

To my delight, there was an ancient upright there. The receptionist told me that she'd never heard anyone play it in the fifteen years she'd worked there, and didn't know whether it was still playable. 'Honky-tonk' didn't begin to describe its state of tuning, nor the fact that some notes didn't sound (broken strings or hammers), but I spent the whole afternoon on it, playing through everything I knew (and a lot I didn't know I knew....). I hadn't played for over three years, and made up for lost time, and had never enjoyed myself quite so much, up to that point - apart from the time when I spent an afternoon playing a beautifully prepared Bösendorfer Imperial in their plushy showroom in Vienna when I was 'backpacking' (travelling by InterRail, carrying everything with me in my backpack) my way around Europe as an impoverished student some ten years previously. What a contrast between the two pianos! thumb

On another of my student backpacking trips by train, I spent three weeks in Scandinavia (with a Nordturist rail ticket). In Bergen, I found another upright in the youth hostel where I was staying, and spent a rainy afternoon there playing it - Grieg's Lyric Pieces in particular, sight-reading from the volumes in the bench (- I'd just visited Troldhaugen the day before, and had also played on Grieg's own Steinway B). Many of the other hostellers stayed in to listen to the music of Norway's greatest composer....

Each time, I was transported into the world of music - music that I was able to make for myself, and which reminded me how lucky I was that I had learnt to play to a good standard when I was younger. And that I didn't give up learning piano even though all the other children around me (including my brother and sisters) had stopped within a few years.

You don't know how much being able to play the piano means, until you hear people say when they hear you play: "I wish I'd continued with my piano lessons when I was young".......


"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: Why do we play? [Re: bennevis] #2365027
12/23/14 05:55 PM
12/23/14 05:55 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,248
presently Germany (Danish)
Jytte Offline OP
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Originally Posted by bennevis
(- I'd just visited Troldhaugen the day before, and had also played on Grieg's own Steinway B).


WOW that must have been quite the experience smile


[Linked Image]XXXVII-XXXVIII
I pray, that tomorrow I may strive to be a little better than I am today - and, on behalf of everybody else, I give thanks for headphones.
Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2365048
12/23/14 06:48 PM
12/23/14 06:48 PM
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rpw Offline
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Anyone would be drawn to a piano if they could play that easily.

Re: Why do we play? [Re: chopinoholic] #2365201
12/24/14 06:26 AM
12/24/14 06:26 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 4,198
Finland
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outo Offline
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Finland
Originally Posted by chopinoholic


That's also why I love this forum. Fellow sufferers of piano addiction smile


It definitely does count as an addiction...because I think if it far too much (at work too), completely forget myself when at it and I don't want to go out with friends or to trips anymore because I prefer spending time with the piano and dread the idea of withdrawal symptoms.

This morning I woke up and the first thought was not that it's Christmas eve, but that I suddenly had an idea how I might be able to fix this technical problem I have with a piece...went to the piano and fixed it. Don't need more presents today smile

Re: Why do we play? [Re: Jytte] #2365207
12/24/14 07:32 AM
12/24/14 07:32 AM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,248
presently Germany (Danish)
Jytte Offline OP
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That sounds terribly familiar.

Maybe this thread should be called "Piano Anonymous" laugh


[Linked Image]XXXVII-XXXVIII
I pray, that tomorrow I may strive to be a little better than I am today - and, on behalf of everybody else, I give thanks for headphones.
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