Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2.7 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
What's Hot!!
Mr. PianoWorld - the full interview
-------------------
European Tour for Piano Lovers
JOIN US FOR THE TOUR!
--------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Find a Professional
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers

Advertise on Piano World

(ad)
Piano Buyer Guide
Piano Buyer Spring 2018
ad
Pierce Piano Atlas


Who's Online Now
97 registered members (8ude, bennevis, Bluegrassdog, anamnesis, BethRH, Animisha, ajames, AnnInMiami, anotherscott, Agent88, 21 invisible), 1,719 guests, and 5 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano & Music Accessories
*Live Piano Venues
*Music School Listings
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Directory/Site Map
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords & Scales
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Just wondering #2563727
08/16/16 09:45 PM
08/16/16 09:45 PM
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 56
Texas
M
MaryMM Offline OP
Full Member
MaryMM  Offline OP
Full Member
M
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 56
Texas
I am 65 years old and finally getting back to working on my piano playing--technique, interpretation, etc. I have a bad habit of starting to think in a negative way and the one issue which come up is that I am too old to do this. I am in good health and of sound mind and my inner voice says that I haven't the ability any longer to do the harmonic analyses and memorize music as I used to. I think this is not actually true, but just the negative side of me trying to undermine something that gives me complete pleasure. I really got out of practice when being responsible for my family--long story. Now I have the time and the desire to work toward getting back up to a respectable manner of playing.

During the interim I earned a masters in psychotherapy and know better than to put up with this negative inner talk, but those nasty ideas pop up when least expected.

I can do this, want to do this, and would just like to hear from others possibly in my age group that I, like you,can return to a decent level of playing and memorizing a good repertoire. Any pointers are appreciated.

Oh, plan to get back to lessons at the beginning of September through the university where I got my MA in piano. I figure that if one has the mental capacity to apply oneself, the memory issues should not be a problem, nor should the age at which someone returns to diligent work on the piano. I love playing and expressing myself through the piano. Since I live alone these days, sometimes that negative inner voice is tough to grapple with. Right now I'm working on a Beethoven Sonata, Faure pieces, and a Brahms Intermezzo. Will soon add a Chopin Prelude. For fun I love playing all sorts of pieces by ear. Thank you all for being here to communicate with about things.


Mary M. Marty
Steinway M 1921
(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563728
08/16/16 10:00 PM
08/16/16 10:00 PM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,946
W
Whizbang Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Whizbang  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
W
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,946
Jump to 4:27. Watch as many times as necessary. This talk gets good and just gets better throughout.

Or, if you want to get straight to the meat of your question, go to 9:10



Whizbang [Linked Image]
amateur ragtime pianist
https://www.youtube.com/user/Aeschala
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563735
08/16/16 10:57 PM
08/16/16 10:57 PM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 3,781
Pennsylvania
D
dmd Offline
3000 Post Club Member
dmd  Offline
3000 Post Club Member
D
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 3,781
Pennsylvania
My suggestion would be to be thankful for the skill you ALREADY have at the piano and just set out to enjoy that skill to play what you love to play.

I would advise against trying to turn things into WORK with associated disappointments and frustrations which creep in when a GOAL is set that may not be realistic.

At 65 (I am 75), you have many years of enjoyment ahead of you if you don't screw it up.

Enjoy what you have.


Last edited by dmd; 08/16/16 10:57 PM.

Don

Current: ES8, Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 audio device, SennHeiser HD598 Phones, Focal CMS 40 Powered Monitors
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563736
08/16/16 11:02 PM
08/16/16 11:02 PM
Joined: Apr 2013
Posts: 3,382
western MA, USA
H
hreichgott Offline
3000 Post Club Member
hreichgott  Offline
3000 Post Club Member
H
Joined: Apr 2013
Posts: 3,382
western MA, USA
Hi Mary, I've taught a few adult restarters and love it. All of them were a bit rusty when they restarted. All of them had a lot of self-doubt and that was their biggest obstacle. All of them were experienced music lovers and so had a wonderful adult approach to beauty and expressiveness in music. All of them had some things they did incredibly well and some things that needed a bit more remediation. And I want to be like them when I grow up smile Enjoy the music and try not to let the self-doubt get in your way!


Heather W. Reichgott, piano http://heatherwreichgott.blogspot.com

Working on:
Cabaret (whole show)
12+ variations from classical ballets
Verdi: Stabat Mater
Copland: Appalachian Spring
Tangos and other fun music for piano duo

I love Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and new music
(ad ) MusicNotes.com
sheet music search
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563738
08/16/16 11:13 PM
08/16/16 11:13 PM
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 144
Lacey WA
L
leel Offline
Full Member
leel  Offline
Full Member
L
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 144
Lacey WA
As someone who STARTED playing at 79, I'd say you're not "too old". Buck up-- You can and will do it! thumb

Re: Just wondering [Re: dmd] #2563779
08/17/16 05:11 AM
08/17/16 05:11 AM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,460
Spain
A
Albunea Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Albunea  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,460
Spain
Originally Posted by dmd


I would advise against trying to turn things into WORK with associated disappointments and frustrations which creep in when a GOAL is set that may not be realistic.




I like this. It might look easy, but some people don't seem to be able to find a way to "play with the piano". You are lucky at your level because there are so many things you could do effortlessly... I started last year at 48 and not planning to go above something like level 4. Of course, I am not planning to memorize either! Maybe you can start with easy repertoire and work on your sight-reading?

dmd, I am surprised you are 75. You sound young to me smile all day reading difficult books and clearly learning lots of things (that I don't understand laugh ).

Re: Just wondering [Re: hreichgott] #2563781
08/17/16 05:13 AM
08/17/16 05:13 AM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,460
Spain
A
Albunea Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Albunea  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,460
Spain
Originally Posted by hreichgott
And I want to be like them when I grow up smile


You can't be like them because you are never going to stop playing! smile

Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563782
08/17/16 05:15 AM
08/17/16 05:15 AM
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,724
Georgia, USA
Sam S Offline

2000 Post Club Member
Sam S  Offline

2000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,724
Georgia, USA
Unless you have to memorize for some reason, there's no reason to stress about it. I am much more comfortable with the music in front of me, even if parts of it are memorized. I'm going back to school in my retirement, and unfortunately memorization is required - it's a struggle for me.

There are plenty of us here in our 50s, 60s, 70s. My goal is to have fun and push myself to learn - until it stops being fun. There's a balance there somewhere!

I suggest participating in the online recitals as a good way to push yourself. The ABF quarterly is very supportive and friendly.

Sam

Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563793
08/17/16 07:20 AM
08/17/16 07:20 AM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,171
Louisiana
R
Rerun Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Rerun  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
R
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,171
Louisiana
Quote
For fun I love playing all sorts of pieces by ear.


Hey Mary, I'm an old guy (8 grand kids) ... yep, find the fun! I'd say get better at playing by ear whether it's hymns, pop, Christmas carols, show tunes, you name it. Playing/taking requests from family/friends and groups is a hoot. If you just know the melody and can hear those next chord changes coming up,you can absolutely go on for hours.


Last edited by Rerun; 08/17/16 07:30 AM. Reason: didn't proof read

Rerun

"Seat of the pants piano player" DMD


[Linked Image]



Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563795
08/17/16 07:26 AM
08/17/16 07:26 AM
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 377
P
Pianoperformance Offline
Full Member
Pianoperformance  Offline
Full Member
P
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 377
At a certain time in our life, we have to begin to have fun...for me, piano could have been a profession had I been able to start young. Alast life took me down another road. I could have applied the same level of stress and worry to learning as an adult, but the pact I made with myself, work and life are stressful enough..I don't need to site exams or do recitals to prove even to myself...It s fun (some frustration, of course) hereon in...everyone is different, but for me, just soo happy, with great teacher, I am playing the piano!


Dream came true : playing the piano
Kawai CS11/Yamaha Arius 161
lessons: 150 hours + counting
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563809
08/17/16 08:44 AM
08/17/16 08:44 AM
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 56
Texas
M
MaryMM Offline OP
Full Member
MaryMM  Offline OP
Full Member
M
Joined: Jul 2016
Posts: 56
Texas
Thank you all. Just needed the support you all have given. I want to enjoy myself and enjoy playing piano and doing it well. I like the approach all of you have mentioned--not critical. So I will work toward the enjoyment as I become unrusty. I am loving my daily sessions with the works I like. Most especially it is fun to end these session playing whatever I want. Nice to know there are other out here who are returning, or starting in our age group.

It makes sense not to be hard on oneself at this stage of the game. Thank you all for your suggestions. I will use them and reread them often! Mary

We will be the pianists we want to be when we grow up!


Mary M. Marty
Steinway M 1921
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563842
08/17/16 11:00 AM
08/17/16 11:00 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,827
B
bennevis Online content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
bennevis  Online Content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 10,827
Originally Posted by MaryMM
I can do this, want to do this, and would just like to hear from others possibly in my age group that I, like you,can return to a decent level of playing and memorizing a good repertoire. Any pointers are appreciated.

Right now I'm working on a Beethoven Sonata, Faure pieces, and a Brahms Intermezzo. Will soon add a Chopin Prelude. For fun I love playing all sorts of pieces by ear.

I'd add my vote already mentioned by Sam S. that you shouldn't stress yourself out over trying to memorize your pieces.

I also picked up piano again after decades away from it (there was one twenty-year period where I probably had less than half an hour on any piano or keyboard of any sort), yet when I restarted properly again in 2010, when I finally bought my own piano (about the time I joined PW), it didn't take long to get back to my previous standard. The higher the standard you were when you last stopped, the quicker it is to regain it.

I think it's a bit like any other skill, e.g. swimming - if you were a good swimmer before you stopped, you might be rusty decades later, but will never forget the skill, and can pick it up again quickly; whereas if you only got to the stage of just being able to keep yourself afloat with a doggy paddle when you were last in a swimming pool, you would find it much harder to even get back into the water without apprehension.

I restarted by re-learning some of the pieces I'd played before, then set about adding more pieces. A year later, I even started memorizing pieces for the first time (apart from when I did my last piano exams as a teenager) and soon realized how time-consuming it was, and how much effort it took. So, I'm very choosy about what I memorize - only the pieces I really, really like and plan to keep in my repertoire indefinitely, and perform regularly.

So, I'd say, just concentrate on enjoying your playing again, play the pieces you want, and don't worry about memorizing anything until you know that there's a piece you won't get fed up with and want to keep playing. BTW, I wouldn't worry about 'harmonic analyses' either, unless it's something you enjoy doing, as well as actually playing the piano.


"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: Just wondering [Re: Albunea] #2563843
08/17/16 11:03 AM
08/17/16 11:03 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 3,781
Pennsylvania
D
dmd Offline
3000 Post Club Member
dmd  Offline
3000 Post Club Member
D
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 3,781
Pennsylvania
Originally Posted by Albunea
dmd, I am surprised you are 75.


Join the club ! It surprised me too shocked


Don

Current: ES8, Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 audio device, SennHeiser HD598 Phones, Focal CMS 40 Powered Monitors
Re: Just wondering [Re: dmd] #2563851
08/17/16 11:32 AM
08/17/16 11:32 AM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,460
Spain
A
Albunea Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Albunea  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 1,460
Spain
Originally Posted by dmd
Originally Posted by Albunea
dmd, I am surprised you are 75.


Join the club ! It surprised me too shocked


LOL laugh

Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563934
08/17/16 05:14 PM
08/17/16 05:14 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 950
Florida
R
Riddler Offline
500 Post Club Member
Riddler  Offline
500 Post Club Member
R
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 950
Florida
Mary, my situation is a bit different, since I am trying to learn jazz, which involves a lot of remembering but not strict memorization of entire works, note by note. Still, the basic dilemma is the same - whether to buckle down and put nose to grindstone and learn like I did when I was young, or sit on a rocking chair on the porch on a summer evening and occasionally strum a banjo, in a manner of speaking. I go back and forth on this, but always in the end I conclude that I am happiest when I am learning something worthwhile, and to me there is hardly anything more worthwhile than music. For me, goal-oriented learning and stress-free fun are not mutually exclusive, there is a big overlap.

Also, when I am learning music, I quite consciously make use of all the learning techniques I used in my academic life and professional life, and they still seem to work in spite of old age (76). I really think I can learn new ideas and memorize stuff about as well as ever.

Better yet, there are zillions of learning resources that are at our fingertips nowadays that we did not have years ago. I see these times as the golden years of learning, though it's only us old geezers that realize it.

So I am still goal-oriented in my musical learning, though as others have said, I take care to avoid setting unrealistic goals, and I don't stress out over stuff that I can't play. Maybe most important of all, I can (and do) just say no to my teacher when he tries to put me on a learning path that is going to stress me out.

Ed


http://edsjazzpianopage.blogspot.com/

My fingers are slow, but easily keep pace with my thoughts.

Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563942
08/17/16 06:06 PM
08/17/16 06:06 PM
Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 209
N
nancyde Offline
Silver Subscriber
nancyde  Offline
Silver Subscriber
N
Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 209
I had taken lessons for about 6 years as a child but not touched the piano since then. I started taking lessons 5years ago when I was 62. About 1 1/2 years ago I got a fabulous teacher and have made great strides. But for me, just loving the journey is the important thing. I love practicing every day and enjoy my lesson time. I am learning Bach Prelude No 1 in C major and just finished a Chopin waltz. I am 67 and I know I will never be a really good player but I love this journey. There is a wonderful book called Late to the Ball about a man that started playing tennis in his middle 50s and was playing competitively in 10 years. The author's name eludes me--he was the long time editor of the NY Times magazine and the book is well written. He talks about all the mental, physical and psychological benefits of learning something new and difficult later in life.

Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2563953
08/17/16 07:17 PM
08/17/16 07:17 PM
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,882
Midwest USA
Stubbie Offline
Gold Subscriber
Stubbie  Offline
Gold Subscriber
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,882
Midwest USA
I started--from scratch--at sixty. I self-taught for a couple of years and am now two and a half years into taking lessons. I have to work hard to internalize the "feel" for the piano that children pick up easily and retain for almost forever, even when they don't use it until taking up playing again as an adult. Mary, with your background in music, you should catch up in no time.

Fully memorizing longer pieces can be a struggle for me. Shorter pieces are okay. Actually, the longer pieces are often partially or nearly fully memorized and the open score serves as a prompt or safety net. Full memorization is not a make-or-break issue for me and I doubt it will be (or should be) an issue for you. I do like that my teacher keeps me challenged. I take it as an expression of her confidence in my ability to meet the challenge, even at my age (she teaches adults almost exclusively).

I am also taking a theory class at the college--back to school at 65. I took the second semester of Theory I last spring (skipped the first semester) and will start Theory II next week. I joke that you could add up the age of three of the students in the class and I'd still be older. There, being older has actually helped, I think--I've got much better self-discipline and study habits than the average twenty-year old.

Mary, your strong desire to play and the pleasure you derive from practicing and playing count for far more than age. You should not hesitate to jump in!


P.S. Joining MOYD here on the ABF is a great incentive to keep you going when the negative voices start niggling at you to slack off at practicing.


[Linked Image]
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2564069
08/18/16 11:03 AM
08/18/16 11:03 AM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,384
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Morodiene  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,384
Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted by MaryMM
I am 65 years old and finally getting back to working on my piano playing--technique, interpretation, etc. I have a bad habit of starting to think in a negative way and the one issue which come up is that I am too old to do this. I am in good health and of sound mind and my inner voice says that I haven't the ability any longer to do the harmonic analyses and memorize music as I used to. I think this is not actually true, but just the negative side of me trying to undermine something that gives me complete pleasure. I really got out of practice when being responsible for my family--long story. Now I have the time and the desire to work toward getting back up to a respectable manner of playing.

During the interim I earned a masters in psychotherapy and know better than to put up with this negative inner talk, but those nasty ideas pop up when least expected.

I can do this, want to do this, and would just like to hear from others possibly in my age group that I, like you,can return to a decent level of playing and memorizing a good repertoire. Any pointers are appreciated.

Oh, plan to get back to lessons at the beginning of September through the university where I got my MA in piano. I figure that if one has the mental capacity to apply oneself, the memory issues should not be a problem, nor should the age at which someone returns to diligent work on the piano. I love playing and expressing myself through the piano. Since I live alone these days, sometimes that negative inner voice is tough to grapple with. Right now I'm working on a Beethoven Sonata, Faure pieces, and a Brahms Intermezzo. Will soon add a Chopin Prelude. For fun I love playing all sorts of pieces by ear. Thank you all for being here to communicate with about things.


It sounds as though you were pretty far along when you stopped, so you should have no problems returning. Just don't expect to play at the level you did when you stopped. I'm not sure what you were working on for your MA, but perhaps take on some pieces that are a level below that and give yourself time to get your fingers back into playing again.

I'm sure a good teacher will be able to help you through this, but it's definitely achievable. Don't worry about memorization, either, even if you're not able to memorize as easily as you could when you were younger. That doesn't really matter as much unless you are looking to perform solo concerts.

Be VERY patient with yourself and take your time. Enjoy the process of getting better as opposed to trying to "catch up" or make up for lost time. The latter two ideas are what can kill the process, and it only reminds you of what you used to be able to do. If you did it once, you can do it again in time. smile


private piano/voice teacher FT

[Linked Image][Linked Image][Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: Just wondering [Re: MaryMM] #2564185
08/18/16 08:58 PM
08/18/16 08:58 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,791
Philadelphia, PA
J
jdw Offline
1000 Post Club Member
jdw  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
J
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,791
Philadelphia, PA
Just to add another perspective from someone who didn't acquire the piano skills you did early in life. I had a year or two of lessons but no serious piano study until about five years ago (I'm now 61). I had never memorized a piano piece in my life, did not think I could--but working differently made me realize I could acquire those skills, even at this age. I can memorize if I want, though I normally play from the score. I'm able to play better than I ever imagined (though of course I'd still like to improve!)

I think the bright side of not working to your full potential earlier in life is that you can continue to expand on into age.


1989 Baldwin R
Currently working on:
Chopin, Waltz in E minor (op. posth.)
Schubert, Op. 90 no. 2
Mendelssohn, Op. 19 no. 2
Re: Just wondering [Re: jdw] #2564194
08/18/16 09:44 PM
08/18/16 09:44 PM
Joined: Jun 2013
Posts: 26
P
plunkit Offline
Full Member
plunkit  Offline
Full Member
P
Joined: Jun 2013
Posts: 26
meditation.


beginning tinkerer

Moderated by  BB Player 

New In Our Store!
New In Our Store!
key racks with hand sanitizer
Attn: Piano Teachers, Music Teachers, Studios!

A rack made from actual piano keys, with individual hand sanitizer for each student!
Tons more music related products in our online store!
New Topics - Multiple Forums
P125 --sustain ??
by engineerjoel. 09/24/18 01:27 PM
Jansen vs. Maestro vs. Infinity piano bench?
by Bluegrassdog. 09/24/18 11:55 AM
Minecraft main theme on piano
by pianoten. 09/24/18 11:34 AM
Kawai MP7SE user review
by Steve Rose. 09/24/18 10:38 AM
(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq Steingraeber
Forum Statistics
Forums40
Topics187,467
Posts2,747,526
Members91,084
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
(ad)
Accu-Tuner
Sanderson Accu-Tuner
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers


 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter |


copyright 1997 - 2018 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.1.1