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Strange things people say when you play? #2726016
04/02/18 10:57 AM
04/02/18 10:57 AM
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Midwest USA
Stubbie Offline OP
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What is the strangest/most startling thing your teacher or someone listening to you play has said? Preferably what was said about your playing, not about the weird hat you were wearing. laugh


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In summer, the song sings itself. --William Carlos Williams
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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726018
04/02/18 11:00 AM
04/02/18 11:00 AM
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"that was good!"


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726020
04/02/18 11:06 AM
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It’s not what was said, but the fact that anything was said at all at that point in time. I was playing the prelude section for a church service. In the middle of one of the pieces, the minister came up to the piano and started a conversation, while still expecting (I guess) me to keep playing!


"Music, rich, full of feeling, not soulless, is like a crystal on which the sun falls and brings forth from it a whole rainbow" - F. Chopin
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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726021
04/02/18 11:06 AM
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"You call that music?!?"

"Why don't you play something we know?"

"Can't you play softer - maybe some waltzes."

"You do know you're drowning out the TV."

Playing for memory care places can be challenging laugh


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726022
04/02/18 11:18 AM
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Lol....just a couple days ago: "People would pay a lot of money for you to teach them how to do that". Um, I really doubt it.....having no degree, poor sight reading skills, unrefined technique, and a pretty rudimentary knowledge of the vast world of music.

Honorable mention: "You've got so much talent!". Please.....if I had talent, with the amount of work I put it, I would be a professional, not a hobbyist. I get this one a lot, and it always bothers me....but I just smile and say "thank you"


Currently working on:
Asturia (Leyenda) - Isaac Albeniz
Mia and Sabastian's Theme - Kyle Landry arrangement
also working on some vocal training



Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726030
04/02/18 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Stubbie
What is the strangest/most startling thing your teacher or someone listening to you play has said?

Apart from undeserved compliments after some of my worst recitals (which I usually try to redeem by playing something really flashy to finish with, which hopefully obliterates memories of memory lapses, chunks of wrong notes etc in earlier pieces wink ), I'm continually surprised by what some people recognize and love.

A middle-aged man recognized Bach's Goldberg from Silence of the Lambs (or was it its sequel?). Never underestimate the power of a movie as a gateway into classical music. (Especially a movie with lots of gore grin). And recently, an elderly woman came up to me as I was in full flood, and asked if the piece was Rustle of Spring. I said 'yes', and tried to keep playing while continuing the conversation, but multi-tasking is somewhat beyond my capabilities (amazing though they are, even if I say so myself wink ), and I soon lost track of the music. So, I stopped playing, finished the conversation, then resumed the piece.

But what struck me was that this was the first piece I played that struck such a chord in her that she wanted to interrupt my playing to tell me so, because her mother used to play it for her. She'd been coming to my recitals for years but never given any hint that she recognized any of the music I played (and never spoken to me). (I normally play a 50:50 mix of well-known and unfamiliar pieces in my recitals).

Which made me renew my efforts to look out for 'golden oldies' in classical piano music - pieces that used to be very popular and played in every home where there was a piano. They jog pleasurable memories, especially from our teenage years, as this program reminded me:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/art...-we-love-as-teens-stays-with-us-for-life

As for being interrupted while playing, why not, if someone is so struck by the music that they couldn't wait until I'd finished to tell me so? thumb


"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: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726032
04/02/18 11:56 AM
04/02/18 11:56 AM
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You were playing something? Sorry, I was watching the walking dead.


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726034
04/02/18 12:02 PM
04/02/18 12:02 PM
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Upstate SC
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Usually it’s “yea, that’s good. Um, hey, I gotta go now”. At least they are polite.😁

Last edited by monkeeys; 04/02/18 12:04 PM.

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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: JayWalkingBlues] #2726041
04/02/18 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by JayWalkingBlues

Honorable mention: "You've got so much talent!". Please.....if I had talent, with the amount of work I put it, I would be a professional, not a hobbyist. I get this one a lot, and it always bothers me....but I just smile and say "thank you"

Don't sell yourself short: professionals work VERY hard at what they do, and they're mostly very talented. So I get what you're saying - people see talent and they don't realize the effort required to actually play - but being a professional involves both aspects. smile


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726044
04/02/18 12:52 PM
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Florida
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My sister in law was in my house for the past three days. I have never really seen her show any interest whatsoever in what I am doing, so as my piano is in the home - office, off to one side of house, I tend to just disappear at times and do my usual practice. Right now I'm working on the Milonga, which I have down but just want to keep it in memory, the Consolation in Db by Liszt which I have completed but am continuing to play and practice trouble spots to try to improve it by the next recital, and The Girl With The Flaxen Hair, which I have 85% down but am still smoothing out.

Anyway, while I was was playing the Consolation,and 3/4 of the way into it, she finally acknowledged the fact that I actually have a piano and occasionally sit down to hit some keys by saying last night, "do you think I can interrupt your beautiful playing by asking you to turn the air conditioning warmer tonight?" I was so touched.


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726062
04/02/18 01:30 PM
04/02/18 01:30 PM
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Midwest USA
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This is second-hand, from my mother. It happened in the church she formerly attended. There was a new minister. The organist was playing a piece--probably taking off from the hymn that had just been sung--and she was letting out all the stops. She was an excellent musician whether on the organ or piano and she could really rock the church. At any rate, when she finished playing the pastor stood up and said, "Well, thank goodness that's over with."

The organist got up, left the church, and never came back.


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In summer, the song sings itself. --William Carlos Williams
Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726069
04/02/18 01:46 PM
04/02/18 01:46 PM
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England
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No wonder digital pianos with headphones are so popular!!

I always use headphones now when I'm not alone, since Mrs Lillith used to wince or grimace every time I hit a wrong note (which is of course often!!

That said, it must be difficult for onlookers to know what to say when hearing somebody learning a piece or practising something they've not mastered (which in my case is practically everything).


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726078
04/02/18 02:17 PM
04/02/18 02:17 PM
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Niagara Falls NY
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"Why don't you play something easier?" Said by my hubby, who has never played an instrument in his life!


Lisa

Currently working on Bach 2 part inventions, Chopin mazurkas, and some Keith Snell Level 5 stuffs, lol. smile
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"Sometimes I can only groan, and suffer, and pour out my despair at the piano!" - Frederic Chopin
Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726091
04/02/18 02:43 PM
04/02/18 02:43 PM
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I'm sure this particular experience doesn't happen often on the piano but,

A friend of mine was playing his Dobro,( a resophonic guitar, laid on the lap and played with finger picks and steel bar)
and his mother walks into the room.
She walks right up to where he's playing, he is really focused, trying to impress her with his playing, going on and on, finishes with a flurrry.
Finally, when he finishes, he looks up in anticipation of 'Good job" or something.

She says, "You're in my chair!"

Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726098
04/02/18 02:59 PM
04/02/18 02:59 PM
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 164
Maryland
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It's simply amazing how people have such disrespect for others in this day and age. It's so apparent that people who would respond in some of the ways depicted have no experience with playing a musical instrument.

Different type situation, but my mother does counted cross-stitch which is a type of needlework for those who don't know. She made an elaborate gift for a bride one time, and when the bride was not overly appreciative, she decided she would not do the same for the future brides within the family. The next bride was hurt that she did not receive such a gift, and still didn't really understand even after the reason was explained to her. Some time later that girl took up the craft herself, and once she did and was able to understand the amount of work involved, she completely understood my mother's position. Her frame of reference had changed.

I think people would respond in a more positive way if they had some experience with how difficult it is to learn to play, but still.... people could be more supportive.


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Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Bobby Badd] #2726102
04/02/18 03:16 PM
04/02/18 03:16 PM
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Posts: 68
Massachusetts
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Originally Posted by Bobby Badd
I'm sure this particular experience doesn't happen often on the piano but,

A friend of mine was playing his Dobro,( a resophonic guitar, laid on the lap and played with finger picks and steel bar)
and his mother walks into the room.
She walks right up to where he's playing, he is really focused, trying to impress her with his playing, going on and on, finishes with a flurrry.
Finally, when he finishes, he looks up in anticipation of 'Good job" or something.

She says, "You're in my chair!"


Lol....I can totally relate the guy in your story. Sometimes, all I want is for the people in my daily life to seem at least a little impressed, or intrigued, or even just show the slightest enjoyment at a song I've played. In the 10 years I've been married, my wife has never once commented on my music. At least she tolerates it, so I'll keep her around for now.


Currently working on:
Asturia (Leyenda) - Isaac Albeniz
Mia and Sabastian's Theme - Kyle Landry arrangement
also working on some vocal training



Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726112
04/02/18 03:42 PM
04/02/18 03:42 PM
Joined: May 2001
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New York City
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Originally Posted by Stubbie
This is second-hand, from my mother. It happened in the church she formerly attended. There was a new minister. The organist was playing a piece--probably taking off from the hymn that had just been sung--and she was letting out all the stops. She was an excellent musician whether on the organ or piano and she could really rock the church. At any rate, when she finished playing the pastor stood up and said, "Well, thank goodness that's over with."

The organist got up, left the church, and never came back.
HAHAHA

Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: Stubbie] #2726114
04/02/18 03:50 PM
04/02/18 03:50 PM
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"How was the meatloaf, Sam?" yelled by someone during a performance in an assisted living facility.

"I love a man who can play the piano." said by a very old woman who had previously insulted my playing in a major way,

"Shhh!" said by the conductor of a choral group I was accompanying because I was singing along during their performance.

"That was very boring." said by my college piano teacher as i played the opening of the Chopin Ballade No.1.

"Why do they let him play the piano?" said loudly by someone during a performance at a senior center.

"I'd give up a year of my life if I could play like you." said by a fellow teacher after I played for a performance of the Fantastiks.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 04/02/18 03:51 PM.
Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: GidgetKeys] #2726115
04/02/18 03:59 PM
04/02/18 03:59 PM
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Niagara Falls NY
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Originally Posted by GidgetKeys
I think people would respond in a more positive way if they had some experience with how difficult it is to learn to play, but still.... people could be more supportive.


Exactly!!


Lisa

Currently working on Bach 2 part inventions, Chopin mazurkas, and some Keith Snell Level 5 stuffs, lol. smile
Kawai UST-9, Yamaha CLP565GP, Kawai KDP110

"Sometimes I can only groan, and suffer, and pour out my despair at the piano!" - Frederic Chopin
Re: Strange things people say when you play? [Re: ebonykawai] #2726126
04/02/18 05:03 PM
04/02/18 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by ebonykawai
Originally Posted by GidgetKeys
I think people would respond in a more positive way if they had some experience with how difficult it is to learn to play, but still.... people could be more supportive.


Exactly!!

I found from long experience (since childhood, when my mother tried to drown out my practicing by turning up the TV) that if you don't expect anyone to appreciate your playing, any sign of tolerance, let alone approval from anyone is a bonus. grin

It's with the advent of YouTube that people who'd never learnt to play an instrument think that learning to play and learning to read music is child's play - how could it not be, the they can see little kiddies on YT playing Chopin Etudes when they still can't reach the pedals?

It can only get worse, as fewer and fewer people learn to play, and more and more are content to just be passive listeners. Why would they want to spend even a few weeks of hard work to try to learn anything music-related when they can just tap a few buttons and get all the music they want to hear & see?


"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."
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