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Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800097
01/09/19 12:24 PM
01/09/19 12:24 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline OP
Full Member
CadenzaVvi  Offline OP
Full Member

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
I feel a bit of judgement here.

I take exams because I like it. But I certainly like the music in itself too. I didn't take exam in my first 1,5 year at the piano. I realized that my practice lack some meaning, because I had no opportunity to perform. I also noticed that I was something dismissing some of my teacher comments thinking that it sounded fine anyway and a part of me knew it was wrong and that I should take time to fix things up. I'm also convinced that full-musicianship is important, but I feel like it is harder to take the time by myself to do ear training and sight singing if there is no upcoming exam. Also, the exam gives clear goal so it is easier to focus on a progressive learning in that musicianship, whereas it is easy to feel lost by yourself (this is how I feel at least).

So yes, I can enjoy the music without the goals. I can't enjoy the music without the progress. What motivates me is to see I'm getting better and that I can tackle so beautiful pieces. Pieces don't need to be more challenging. I'm sure that a piece I've played last year, I could get back to it in 10 years and play it more beautifully than I did at my last exam. And this will be because I've improved. I don't see the point of doing music if I can't overcome challenges and get better. When I'll be very good, I might be happy with my level, but right now, I need to get better for music to sound good. And I don't see when I won't be able to improve in an aspect of music playing, considering how rich it is. So I don't see a moment when the need to progress will be a problem regarding staying motivated, since there is always room for progress (and I'm of the school that thinks that with hardwork, almost everything is possible).

So no, I'm not simply enjoying the act of achieving goals. As I've stated, the question of exams particularly arise right now because I have to take a decision before the end of the month about taking them or not this year. And there are some considerations into that (will I be ready? If I don't take them now, will I take them next year? If so, how do I manage my repertoire? If not, how can I fulfil my objectives of meaningness in my practice and stay motivated to do ear training and sight singing? Etc.).
Just playing pieces in my lessons, putting them aside when we consider them to be polish enough, getting a new piece to replace... this is what is becoming, for me, repetitive, boring and without meaning. Why do I practice? Yes, I enjoy the music in itself, but music is made to be shared. With the exams, there are 5 pieces, there is a deadline, there is a performance. There is an objective, there is a meaning.
The meaning could be an annual recital and it would be probably fine too. But my teacher don't have those. So I chose the exam path.

Not all people feel the same about exam and that is perfectly fine. But no, enjoying the music in itself is not the problem for me.
If taking exams is without meaning for someone, then that person shouldn't do exams. In fact, I've never saw exams being pushed upon adults, so I don't really get your point about that.

And I'm not sure about your affirmation that it is what push people out of lessons. I feel like it is more because people realize it is harder than they expected to play music and they are not willing to put the energy. Or because they have other things happening in their life (a lot of teenagers quit music when entering university; probably that some adults stop when they get children or change jobs).


My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
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Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800101
01/09/19 12:49 PM
01/09/19 12:49 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 3,210
Florida
cmb13 Offline

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cmb13  Offline

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No judgement from me. I think it's important to enjoy the process, and if exams help with motivation, then go right ahead! I'd like them too, but it's just not in my reality now. But also, the meaning (ie being able to play piano) of making music is important too, and for that purpose, I would suggest that you sometimes just sit and play for enjoyment. It may help to keep a few pieces in your "repertoire", come back to them often enough that you can just play them, for yourself or for friends. This may help fulfill another aspect, keeping it meaningful and enjoyable.

One more thing, learning piano takes a long, long time. At five years I feel like a solid intermediate (quiet, Lieutenant), and still nowhere near advanced. The longer you're at it, the better you get, the more you'll enjoy it! That's my opinion based on my experience; it gets better and better (the enjoyment).


Steinway A3
Boston 118 PE

YouTube

Working On
Debussy Clair De Lune
Bach Inventions
Grieg Sonata - Andante molto

"You Can Never Have Too Many Dream Pianos" -Thad Carhart
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: cmb13] #2800107
01/09/19 12:58 PM
01/09/19 12:58 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
Tyrone Slothrop  Online Content

7000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Originally Posted by cmb13
At five years I feel like a solid intermediate (quiet, Lieutenant), and still nowhere near advanced.

What about, "intermediate that plays a lot of advanced pieces?" Does that work for you? wink

BTW, I realize at the heart of this is simply a definitional issue. What is the definition of beginner, intermediate, and advanced? On Reddit, I had someone try to convince me that all pieces that are below the level of virtuosic are beginner pieces. I've been trying to use this myself to measure with.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800111
01/09/19 01:14 PM
01/09/19 01:14 PM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,231
Orange County, CA
AZNpiano Offline
8000 Post Club Member
AZNpiano  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,231
Orange County, CA
Maybe you'll enjoy piano more if you play easier music? And more pieces? My suspicion is that you've hit a wall in terms of difficulty. It's not normal to be playing this kind of repertoire with your limited piano experience.


Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800119
01/09/19 01:29 PM
01/09/19 01:29 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 882
R
Richrf Offline
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Richrf  Offline
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R

Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 882
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi

And I'm not sure about your affirmation that it is what push people out of lessons. I feel like it is more because people realize it is harder than they expected to play music and they are not willing to put the energy. Or because they have other things happening in their life (a lot of teenagers quit music when entering university; probably that some adults stop when they get children or change jobs).


Playing music is very easy. Anyone can do it. It's pleasing others (e.g. via exams) that is difficult.

Re: Drop of motivation [Re: Richrf] #2800121
01/09/19 01:34 PM
01/09/19 01:34 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
Tyrone Slothrop  Online Content

7000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Originally Posted by Richrf
Playing music is very easy. Anyone can do it. It's pleasing others (e.g. via exams) that is difficult.

...and some people are motivated by difficult things. I took up rock/mountain/ice climbing because it was difficult. I've always preferred difficult over easy. Easy is boring for me.

I don't think it is valid, in general, to question people's underlying motivations. They are what they are. I started to learn piano because of literally one piano piece. I likely will not be able to even approach that piece for seven more years. If I was told I would never be able to play it, I might actually quit piano eventually (not sure). But my motivations, silly as they may be, are mine and mine alone, not anyone else's. It is what it is.

(And I loved exams when I was at the university and can't wait to take my first piano exam. Delicious!)


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800123
01/09/19 01:38 PM
01/09/19 01:38 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 3,210
Florida
cmb13 Offline

Silver Level
cmb13  Offline

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Joined: May 2013
Posts: 3,210
Florida
Okay, I'll bite, what piece is it?


Steinway A3
Boston 118 PE

YouTube

Working On
Debussy Clair De Lune
Bach Inventions
Grieg Sonata - Andante molto

"You Can Never Have Too Many Dream Pianos" -Thad Carhart
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: cmb13] #2800127
01/09/19 01:47 PM
01/09/19 01:47 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
Tyrone Slothrop  Online Content

7000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Originally Posted by cmb13
Okay, I'll bite, what piece is it?


November of 2017, I was on Amazon.com shopping for something else and saw a digital piano on the Amazon.com landing page. I thought immediately of the piece above and thought, "wouldn't it be cool to learn to play it?" (OK, it's just what a non piano person might think!) Well, a few minutes of googling, and I ended up ordering a Roland FP30, having maybe touched a piano all of 10 mins total before, in my life. The rest is the rest. smile

(And yes, I thought learning that piece might take a 1-2 years when I ordered the piano - I've since upgraded my estimate to 7 years before I dare even look at the score! LOL)


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800130
01/09/19 01:56 PM
01/09/19 01:56 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 3,210
Florida
cmb13 Offline

Silver Level
cmb13  Offline

Silver Level
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2013
Posts: 3,210
Florida
Good choice (love Lisitsa - saw her live, locally, last year). By the time you complete that piece, you will have had the unintended consequence of having become an excellent pianist, my friend.


Steinway A3
Boston 118 PE

YouTube

Working On
Debussy Clair De Lune
Bach Inventions
Grieg Sonata - Andante molto

"You Can Never Have Too Many Dream Pianos" -Thad Carhart
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: Tyrone Slothrop] #2800149
01/09/19 02:51 PM
01/09/19 02:51 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 882
R
Richrf Offline
500 Post Club Member
Richrf  Offline
500 Post Club Member
R

Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 882
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by Richrf
Playing music is very easy. Anyone can do it. It's pleasing others (e.g. via exams) that is difficult.

...and some people are motivated by difficult things. I took up rock/mountain/ice climbing because it was difficult. I've always preferred difficult over easy. Easy is boring for me.

I don't think it is valid, in general, to question people's underlying motivations. They are what they are. I started to learn piano because of literally one piano piece. I likely will not be able to even approach that piece for seven more years. If I was told I would never be able to play it, I might actually quit piano eventually (not sure). But my motivations, silly as they may be, are mine and mine alone, not anyone else's. It is what it is.

(And I loved exams when I was at the university and can't wait to take my first piano exam. Delicious!)


Read the title of the OP. You're advocating more of the same. I'm suggesting change.

There is a Chinese saying: If you don't change direction, you'll end up where you are heading.

Re: Drop of motivation [Re: AZNpiano] #2800158
01/09/19 03:16 PM
01/09/19 03:16 PM
Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 1,041
Niagara Falls NY
ebonykawai Online content
1000 Post Club Member
ebonykawai  Online Content
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 1,041
Niagara Falls NY
Originally Posted by AZNpiano
Maybe you'll enjoy piano more if you play easier music? And more pieces? My suspicion is that you've hit a wall in terms of difficulty. It's not normal to be playing this kind of repertoire with your limited piano experience.


+1


Lisa

Currently working on RCM 7 repertoire
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: Drop of motivation [Re: Animisha] #2800186
01/09/19 04:35 PM
01/09/19 04:35 PM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 4,590
Finland
O
outo Offline
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outo  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 4,590
Finland
Originally Posted by Animisha
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
-My job being demanding, I'm very tired. Practicing often looks like something too demanding for what is left of my capacity to focus.

This was my situation when I decided to buy a piano, and start learning how to play. Not such a good idea. Now I am at home with a burn-out that seems to never go away.


It can be really hard to combine serious piano study (from the beginning) and a demanding job, because getting somewhere with the piano takes an enourmous amount of concentrated practice unless one happens to be a natural that learns easy and fast. Looking back I wonder how I ever managed for so many years. And I was often stressed about lessons, although I can handle stress quite well. In fact I think I was always more stressed about piano than my job smile

Lately whent I have had a break from lessons and also had a huge extra project at work, I willingly gave up daily practice for almost 3 months. It actually was a good thing, now that the job calmed down and lessons started again I feel very eager to play and practice again. Also I have learned to keep my perfectionism in better control. According to my teacher my playing has not deteriorated, which was my main concern...to loose something that I had worked so hard for. I have lost pieces, but not the skills. And for the first time ever I have now managed to memorize 3 pieces (or parts of them) so that they seem to survive even longer breaks. And this only happened after I reduced my practice drastically...so more is not always better.

Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800237
01/09/19 06:16 PM
01/09/19 06:16 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline OP
Full Member
CadenzaVvi  Offline OP
Full Member

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
Originally Posted by cmb13
No judgement from me.

My answer was directly adressed to Richfr that answered just before I did. wink

Originally Posted by cmb13
But also, the meaning (ie being able to play piano) of making music is important too, and for that purpose, I would suggest that you sometimes just sit and play for enjoyment. It may help to keep a few pieces in your "repertoire", come back to them often enough that you can just play them, for yourself or for friends. This may help fulfill another aspect, keeping it meaningful and enjoyable.

Yeah, I should do this more. I must say this is what I did in my first 2 years of piano, but I’ve got bored to play the same pieces over and over again. I should shift my maintained repertoire to more recent pieces, but the simple fact that I was less on the piano in the past months caused me to have less time to try to maintain my latest pieces. That combined with “I’m sick of my old pieces” cause me to currently have almost no piece I can play just for fun (I can mostly go through some of them, but often have some memory slip, and having the score in front of me is of no help). Maybe I should work on them a little bit to get them back into my fingers (Mozart K545, 1st and 2nd movement and Bach’s invention no 4 shouldn’t be to hard to get back).

Originally Posted by cmb13
One more thing, learning piano takes a long, long time. At five years I feel like a solid intermediate (quiet, Lieutenant), and still nowhere near advanced. The longer you're at it, the better you get, the more you'll enjoy it! That's my opinion based on my experience; it gets better and better (the enjoyment).

I think I’m conscious of that. I’ve told my teacher that I have the ambition to be able to play big repertoire… one day. That I’d like to be able to play like Chopin’s first ballade at one point, but this point can be in 10 years, or even more. There is already a big repertoire available at my current level and that I can enjoy and that could make me progress further until I have the technical abilities to tackle the pieces of my dreams. Until then, I’ll be pretty happy with pieces I like (already my Chopin and my Debussy are two pieces that I love and I’m hoping I’ll be able to do something good with them!).

Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
What is the definition of beginner, intermediate, and advanced? On Reddit, I had someone try to convince me that all pieces that are below the level of virtuosic are beginner pieces. I've been trying to use this myself to measure with.

I think that it doesn’t really matters to have a word to put on our level. Everyone has different standards (so I agree with you with questioning the definition). In my book, the level 10 of RCM correspond to something like late-intermediate / early-advanced at most, because that level only begins to tackle the great repertoire.
And anyway, the question of “how easily you learn pieces of a particular level” matters too. So you can’t simply judge based strictly on what someone plays.
And I don’t mind people having other definitions.

Originally Posted by AZNpiano
Maybe you'll enjoy piano more if you play easier music? And more pieces? My suspicion is that you've hit a wall in terms of difficulty. It's not normal to be playing this kind of repertoire with your limited piano experience.

Maybe. I must say, on that level, I kind of trust my teacher too. I specifically asked him in August if he thought it was a good idea to go for my level 8 this year or if we should instead work on easier pieces to work on some technical aspects I don’t master. And he told me that level 8 was a good plan.
I’ve always been surprised about the mentality of playing a lot of pieces in a year (like the 40-pieces a year idea). I’ve always been practicing more like 6-10 pieces a year and that pacing seemed good to me. I don’t mind having to work 9 months on a piece to perfect it. But, in the past, since I was practicing 2,5 hours a day, on average, I could split my practice time between 3-4 pieces (I was usually practicing about 4 pieces at once so I can vary things up in my long sittings at the piano). With shorter sittings, 1 or 2 pieces is enough (hence why I don’t think I can manage to be ready for a full exam this Spring). I don’t really mind that. What cause me frustration is that I know that, because I’m practicing way less than before, I’m not making much progress. I go to my lessons feeling I haven’t practice enough, that things haven’t improved since the previous week. And I know things wouldn’t be that way if I was practicing like I used too.
Also, to be noted that I had musical experience prior to my beginnings at the piano, that could explain why I’m tackling that kind of repertoire after only 3 years.
I’m not the pro here, so I’m willing to say it is still maybe too fast. But I don’t know. And I hope that my teacher is the best to tell, since he is the one who listens to me on a weekly basis. I hope he knows what is right for my level of mastery.

Originally Posted by Richrf
Playing music is very easy. Anyone can do it. It's pleasing others (e.g. via exams) that is difficult.

Making noise is easy. Playing music is hard. Other people are easier pleased with my music than myself. So, for me, it’s not true. It might be true for you, but this is not how I feel.

Originally Posted by Richrf
Read the title of the OP. You're advocating more of the same. I'm suggesting change.

Well, yeah, but I’m explaining that drop of motivation because of tiredness more than problems with the piano itself. At the piano, I feel in a vicious circle because being less motivated = practicing less = progressing less = being less motivated. So I’m trying to break that circle by getting back on the piano.
Also, I did say in my first message
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
I'm not really hoping anything by posting that here, but it is kind of a relief to share that with people that will probably understand what I'm going through, because it is not the kind of things my friends and family quite get, sadly. So just thank you to be here!

I know ups and downs are part of the process. I know that I’m not the first nor the last to go through them. So I try, first, not to worry to much about it and, second, to bring myself to the piano on a daily basis to push myself in the good direction (opposite to that vicious circle I was talking about).
Currently, my thoughts can often be summed up with this picture. I know this is impossible, so since I want the goal (as stated earlier in this post, I have the ambition, one day, to be able to play advanced repertoire, like Chopin’s ballades), I’m pushing myself in the means to achieve it. I feel like Thyrone and myself are at the same page on that point.
Difficulties make the results even more satisfying!


My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800251
01/09/19 07:00 PM
01/09/19 07:00 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline OP
Full Member
CadenzaVvi  Offline OP
Full Member

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
I've just realized that I could put that simply: the exams are not the reason I'm less motivated. It's the fact that I'm less motivated that makes the exams project less feasible.

-

Outo, I didn't see your post before I posted mine.
Part of the challenge is to find the right balance, but thanks for sharing your experience. It puts things into perspective.

I recently realized that using my time for some activities was less fulfiling than piano. That will probably be an incentive to priorize things more carefully to give piano the place it deserves for my well-being.


My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800254
01/09/19 07:05 PM
01/09/19 07:05 PM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 882
R
Richrf Offline
500 Post Club Member
Richrf  Offline
500 Post Club Member
R

Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 882
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
Originally Posted by cmb13
No judgement from me.

My answer was directly adressed to Richfr that answered just before I did. wink

Originally Posted by cmb13
But also, the meaning (ie being able to play piano) of making music is important too, and for that purpose, I would suggest that you sometimes just sit and play for enjoyment. It may help to keep a few pieces in your "repertoire", come back to them often enough that you can just play them, for yourself or for friends. This may help fulfill another aspect, keeping it meaningful and enjoyable.

Yeah, I should do this more. I must say this is what I did in my first 2 years of piano, but I’ve got bored to play the same pieces over and over again. I should shift my maintained repertoire to more recent pieces, but the simple fact that I was less on the piano in the past months caused me to have less time to try to maintain my latest pieces. That combined with “I’m sick of my old pieces” cause me to currently have almost no piece I can play just for fun (I can mostly go through some of them, but often have some memory slip, and having the score in front of me is of no help). Maybe I should work on them a little bit to get them back into my fingers (Mozart K545, 1st and 2nd movement and Bach’s invention no 4 shouldn’t be to hard to get back).

Originally Posted by cmb13
One more thing, learning piano takes a long, long time. At five years I feel like a solid intermediate (quiet, Lieutenant), and still nowhere near advanced. The longer you're at it, the better you get, the more you'll enjoy it! That's my opinion based on my experience; it gets better and better (the enjoyment).

I think I’m conscious of that. I’ve told my teacher that I have the ambition to be able to play big repertoire… one day. That I’d like to be able to play like Chopin’s first ballade at one point, but this point can be in 10 years, or even more. There is already a big repertoire available at my current level and that I can enjoy and that could make me progress further until I have the technical abilities to tackle the pieces of my dreams. Until then, I’ll be pretty happy with pieces I like (already my Chopin and my Debussy are two pieces that I love and I’m hoping I’ll be able to do something good with them!).

Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
What is the definition of beginner, intermediate, and advanced? On Reddit, I had someone try to convince me that all pieces that are below the level of virtuosic are beginner pieces. I've been trying to use this myself to measure with.

I think that it doesn’t really matters to have a word to put on our level. Everyone has different standards (so I agree with you with questioning the definition). In my book, the level 10 of RCM correspond to something like late-intermediate / early-advanced at most, because that level only begins to tackle the great repertoire.
And anyway, the question of “how easily you learn pieces of a particular level” matters too. So you can’t simply judge based strictly on what someone plays.
And I don’t mind people having other definitions.

Originally Posted by AZNpiano
Maybe you'll enjoy piano more if you play easier music? And more pieces? My suspicion is that you've hit a wall in terms of difficulty. It's not normal to be playing this kind of repertoire with your limited piano experience.

Maybe. I must say, on that level, I kind of trust my teacher too. I specifically asked him in August if he thought it was a good idea to go for my level 8 this year or if we should instead work on easier pieces to work on some technical aspects I don’t master. And he told me that level 8 was a good plan.
I’ve always been surprised about the mentality of playing a lot of pieces in a year (like the 40-pieces a year idea). I’ve always been practicing more like 6-10 pieces a year and that pacing seemed good to me. I don’t mind having to work 9 months on a piece to perfect it. But, in the past, since I was practicing 2,5 hours a day, on average, I could split my practice time between 3-4 pieces (I was usually practicing about 4 pieces at once so I can vary things up in my long sittings at the piano). With shorter sittings, 1 or 2 pieces is enough (hence why I don’t think I can manage to be ready for a full exam this Spring). I don’t really mind that. What cause me frustration is that I know that, because I’m practicing way less than before, I’m not making much progress. I go to my lessons feeling I haven’t practice enough, that things haven’t improved since the previous week. And I know things wouldn’t be that way if I was practicing like I used too.
Also, to be noted that I had musical experience prior to my beginnings at the piano, that could explain why I’m tackling that kind of repertoire after only 3 years.
I’m not the pro here, so I’m willing to say it is still maybe too fast. But I don’t know. And I hope that my teacher is the best to tell, since he is the one who listens to me on a weekly basis. I hope he knows what is right for my level of mastery.

Originally Posted by Richrf
Playing music is very easy. Anyone can do it. It's pleasing others (e.g. via exams) that is difficult.

Making noise is easy. Playing music is hard. Other people are easier pleased with my music than myself. So, for me, it’s not true. It might be true for you, but this is not how I feel.

Originally Posted by Richrf
Read the title of the OP. You're advocating more of the same. I'm suggesting change.

Well, yeah, but I’m explaining that drop of motivation because of tiredness more than problems with the piano itself. At the piano, I feel in a vicious circle because being less motivated = practicing less = progressing less = being less motivated. So I’m trying to break that circle by getting back on the piano.
Also, I did say in my first message
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
I'm not really hoping anything by posting that here, but it is kind of a relief to share that with people that will probably understand what I'm going through, because it is not the kind of things my friends and family quite get, sadly. So just thank you to be here!

I know ups and downs are part of the process. I know that I’m not the first nor the last to go through them. So I try, first, not to worry to much about it and, second, to bring myself to the piano on a daily basis to push myself in the good direction (opposite to that vicious circle I was talking about).
Currently, my thoughts can often be summed up with this picture. I know this is impossible, so since I want the goal (as stated earlier in this post, I have the ambition, one day, to be able to play advanced repertoire, like Chopin’s ballades), I’m pushing myself in the means to achieve it. I feel like Thyrone and myself are at the same page on that point.
Difficulties make the results even more satisfying!




If you know what the problems are and do not wish to change, then you will end up where you are heading, difficulties and all, which apparently you are OK with. That's fine.

Alternatively, if you play what you want when you want, without judgement (by teachers or exams), piano practice pretty much becomes effortless. But this is not the path you desire so it is what it is.

Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800256
01/09/19 07:10 PM
01/09/19 07:10 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
Tyrone Slothrop  Online Content

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Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
one day, to be able to play advanced repertoire, like Chopin’s ballades

Your Ballades is like my La Campanella! All I have to add to this point is, thank goodness for goals as otherwise the world would be a much duller place for some of us!

Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
I feel like Thyrone and myself are at the same page on that point.
Difficulties make the results even more satisfying!

Woot! thumb

Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
I recently realized that using my time for some activities was less fulfiling than piano. That will probably be an incentive to priorize things more carefully to give piano the place it deserves for my well-being.

I think I know exactly what you mean! A friend of mine gave me a Playstation VR set for Christmas since he knows I'm not susceptible to motion sickness. A year ago, I would have broken these out and already put 50 hours on them by now, two+ weeks after I was gifted. Now, I'm trying to figure out how to show my friend my appreciation for a rather expensive gift which I have not even opened yet because it would be a distraction from piano wink


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800259
01/09/19 07:18 PM
01/09/19 07:18 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline OP
Full Member
CadenzaVvi  Offline OP
Full Member

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
@Richrf (adding this line since Thyrone posted while I was writing this)
I think we simply don't see piano practice the same way. The exams are not the problem, are not the cause of my lack of motivation, and not doing exams doesn't make piano practice effortless for me.

I feel like you transpose what you are experiencing at the piano on me, but I'm not experiencing the same, so it doesn't connect to me.

Taking exams or not won't change my motivation. So I don't see how it should solve my problem.


You quoted my entire post, so I'm not sure exactly to which parts you are referring as "knowing the problem" and "not wanting to change".
Because you continue to point out the problem as being the exams, whereas it's not what I'm saying and it's not how I feel about them.

Last edited by CadenzaVvi; 01/09/19 07:20 PM.

My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800262
01/09/19 07:32 PM
01/09/19 07:32 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline OP
Full Member
CadenzaVvi  Offline OP
Full Member

Joined: May 2018
Posts: 346
Quebec city, QC
@Thyrone
Yup, exactly like that. Less series and gaming during the week. If I'm too tired to play the piano, maybe I should simply go to bed (I never want to go to bed at 7pm even though I can be pretty tired. I feel like I'm wasting my evening. But listening to series is another way of wasting an evening... and I haven't thought of it this way before yesterday. That should changes things up a bit).


My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Mozart, K545, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
- Pozzoli, E.R. 427, etude no. 6
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800264
01/09/19 07:35 PM
01/09/19 07:35 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
Tyrone Slothrop  Online Content

7000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,233
Originally Posted by CadenzaVvi
I feel like you transpose what you are experiencing at the piano on me, but I'm not experiencing the same, so it doesn't connect to me.

100% agree! We seem to live in a world, and some of us in a specific country, where it seems increasingly hard for people to understand and empathize with the perspective of others. To take a perspective is to be able to look at things from a point of view other than our own, and it brings in the mindfulness of compassion and empathy to our relationships. Perspective taking starts with the realization that people are not all just clones of oneself. That what is true for oneself may not be true for another person. What is best for the self might not be best for someone else.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Drop of motivation [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2800283
01/09/19 08:15 PM
01/09/19 08:15 PM
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 1,182
M
Moo :) Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Moo :)  Offline
1000 Post Club Member
M

Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 1,182
From the look at the video page you seem to have progressed very quickly.

I noticed myself that K454 is quite nice to play. It is classical piece, arpeggio and scale based. There are nice patterns. It is quite easy to understand the music. You seem to have managed this. I myself found the 1st part very dull after I could play. The Rondo is a bit more interesting. The second movement is my favouriate.

You need to however bear in mind there is however a leap between this and Chopin Nocturne C sharp minor, which is more complex in patterns. To get the soft touch is hard. Golliwog's Cakewalk similarly is much harder when you have no experience. The light / spritely / dancing on keys feel you dont get in many pieces.

So I again think some of this is due to this push to progress. You perhaps are pushing too quickly. Your piece choices are quite a lot harder. Perhaps there is a natural frustration when we practice a long time and dont get there.

I would suggest you think about the piece choice. After K454 I personally would have tried to go from K454, to something like this below (which light but more scale based?)



And before struggling again with Chopin C sharp minor, which I might add every one does!, consider some alternative Chopin's. Some Chopin sound as hard but the score is very nice. If you get the Chopin touch from previous pieces, it is not nearly so hard to pick up.



I think it is a balance between picking hard and easy pieces. I try to get my teacher opinion more now on choices to avoid this as its much easier to judge when you have played something. But to jump from one level to a higher level without the intermediate pieces you can get this struggling / drop of motivation. I expect we all go through this so its all quite normal.

Bon courage !


Last edited by Moo :); 01/09/19 08:20 PM.
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