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#538016 - 12/27/01 09:25 PM The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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Amy  Offline
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What is the best way to prepare for an audition? I'm talking mentally, physically, and musically.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
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#538017 - 12/27/01 10:29 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Brendan Offline
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McAllen, TX
Respectively:

1. Relax.

2. Play your program through twice a week.

3. I'm not sure what you mean by "prepare musically..."

The most imporant of these: relax.

#538018 - 12/28/01 11:21 AM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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By prepare musically I was talking about the preparation of the piece.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538019 - 12/28/01 01:56 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Dan Offline
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Colorado
A former teacher of mine recommended the following:

After getting your pieces memorized, do the 10 day count down. Starting 10 days before your audition each day, at the same time you will perform you audition, play through all of the pieces in the order you will play them. It's important to play at the same time because your body will goes thru cycles each day, and how you feel can effect your playing. Start the audition practice from the moment you enter the room. (Approach the piano as you will in the audition, announce your program if you'll be doing that, etc.).

On day 10, play thru the pieces without stopping. After you're done, note any areas that need work and work on those.
Day 9, same thing. Again make note of any areas that need work and work on those (after playing straight thru of course).
Day 8 thru 5. Same routine. Each day you should expect some improvement in the overall performance.
Days 4, 3, 2, and 1 are for "perfect practice". On each of these days you want to perform at a level that you would be satisfied with for the "real" performance. Polish phrasing daily and make each days work a better performance than the last. Mentally you should imagine yourself in the audition. Do everything just as you would at the audition, even wear the same clothes.

When the audition comes around, you'll have already performed it 10 times in a row and it will simply be "one more" performance. That should help you relax and provide your best work.

Hope all goes well. Let us hear how you do.

Regards,
Dan

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#538020 - 12/29/01 07:40 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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Thank you Dan!
That was very helpful! I will try out the 10 day thing and it sounds very good. Your teacher was smart! : ) I will definatly try to do the run throughs with the shoes that I will be wearing. The last performance I had, the shoes I was wearing were very akward when I played. They weren't big heels or anything but they were a little slippery.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538021 - 12/30/01 08:43 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Aura Offline
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Dear Amy,

Dan's advise is spot on - thanks Dan - I'll actually start doing that myself.

It's important also to be able to achieve the same (or very similar) frame of mind that you are going to be in at your audition. Imagine that you are actually there - playing to the judges - while you play your program over the last week or so. This will help a lot - one of the biggest barriers in music performance is psychological. You can learn to control it - I'm still tryin'!

cheers

aura


cheers

Aura
#538022 - 02/02/02 09:38 AM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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well, my audition is today and I think that i'll be ok with it. I feel very prepared and I did the 10 day thing that Dan suggested. My biggest fear is always the piano. Sometimes I have a hard time adjusting to a different one. I'll let you know how it goes!


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538023 - 02/02/02 12:28 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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jodi Offline
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Good luck, Amy! Jodi

#538024 - 02/02/02 06:02 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Dan Offline
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Colorado
Amy,

Good luck in your audition. It sounds like you're very well prepared and I'll bet everything goes very well for you.

Knock 'em out!

Regards,
Dan

#538025 - 02/02/02 07:03 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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the audition went bad and I probably didn't make it in.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538026 - 02/02/02 08:00 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Dan Offline
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Amy,

I'm sorry you thought things went poorly in your audition. You have many, many years of wonderful music making ahead of you, so don't let it get you down! When you hear the official response, if you were indeed turned down you should review where things went wrong, and figure out how to improve in those areas. Don't give up on yourself!!

My wife interviewed for a spot in Midwestern University's PA program a year ago. It was her 2nd year of trying to get into that school. After the first interview, she contacted the school and found out what she needed to improve on so she would be a more competitive candidate the next year. After working her butt off towards her Master's in Anatomy for a year we went back to Phoenix for the 2nd interview. When it was over, she was SURE she would not be accepted. She felt she had insulted one of the physicians on her interview panel and was unhappy with her responses to their questions. The drive home to Colorado was very quiet, with quite a few tears.

Four weeks later, we heard from Midwestern that she had been accepted! She's now about 3/4 of the way through her first year of studies, was elected President of her class, has about a 3.5 grade point average, and has a solid friendship with the physican she thought she had insulted!

So, no matter what the outcome is from the audition, hang in there and keep pursuing your dreams. The road may take a few twists and turns, but if you're persistent the destination will be all the sweeter when you arrive.

Regards and best wishes,
Dan

#538027 - 02/02/02 08:44 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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Thank you Dan but I just can't stop thinking about it. I feel so horrible.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538028 - 02/02/02 10:56 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Don't get down on yourself, Amy. At the very least, you got to play your program, and that's the most important thing.

Plus, you can never tell the whims of judges/professors/people who don't know what they're talking about. God, I played the absolute burning heck out of the Saint-Saens 2nd two weeks ago at a competition and I didn't even get honorable mention.

What you DON'T want is the mentality that you should just give in because of one bad performance. The best attitude to keep in mind after not doing your best:

Now you know what you need to work on.

#538029 - 02/02/02 11:38 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy, I SO know how you feel. It's hard not to feel bad, but trust me, things will get better. What didn't you like about your performance? Jodi

#538030 - 02/03/02 10:11 AM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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Well I started out with Liebestraume and the voicing in the beginning was not very good. Some notes were sticking out and others were hidden. The middle section was ok but I went a little fast. The cadenzas were both fine but in the ending, I had a memory slip and missed a few measures. I just sort of played anything until I got back. The second piece I played was Reflets Dans l'Eau by Debussy. The only thing wrong with that was that I missed a couple notes towards the middle. Nothing major. But the audition was for a camp this summer so they just recorded me and are going to send it to the faculty to listen to. I could get in depending on what they listen to. If they decide only to listen to Liebestraume, I wouldn't get in but if they fast forwarded through the 2nd half of Liebestraume to the 2nd piece, I have a chance.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538031 - 02/03/02 03:13 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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How difficult is this camp to get into? (How many people apply, and how many get in?) You may have done better than you think. Keep us posted. Jodi

#538032 - 02/03/02 08:55 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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Its quite competitive. Maybe you've heard of it...Brevard Music Center. If not you may have heard of Tanglewood. It is slightly less competitive than that from what I know. I am also auditioning for Tanglewood but I would much rather go to Brevard.
The website is www.Brevardmusic.org if anyone is interested.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538033 - 02/04/02 12:09 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy, I have not given a recital since I was a kid, but I have given many talks and scientific lectures in my field and some principles apply to both public speaking and performance. So here is some advice for what it is worth.
1. Psychologically, although you are being judged, you should assume that they sincerely want you to do well. They probably do, and if they don't, then you don't want to associate with them anyway.
2. It is normal to get nervous, event the greats do. Just recognize that nervousness makes you speak or play fast, and time seems to go very slowly, especially in the beginning. Consciously try to slow it down. What might seem a little slow to you is probably normal.
3. I always try to interject a little humor into into a talk. It is one way to "connect" with the audience. Perhaps the piano equivalent might be to start off with a short "less serious" piece like Mendelssohn's scherzo in Emi op 16. Also smile alot and try to look like you are enjoying yourself. You would be suprised at what an impact this has.
4. With your auditions for school, keep in mind that you are seeking an education. If you already played to perfection there would be no need to go there!

I am sure you did just fine. People tend to be there own worst critics.

P.S. If you go to the Brevard camp at Tanglewood, you might want to also look into UNC at Greensboro. It is less than an hour away from there. It is supposed to have a very strong music performance and education program.
Best of luck!


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#538034 - 02/06/02 11:37 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy, I would really hope that the people judging your audition would not be looking for a perfect recital but rather trying to gain an overall impression of you and your abilities. I suspect they could ascertain whether the types of "glitches" you talk about are the surmountable kind or whether they are led to think you have some serious problems. I doubt the latter. I hope it turns out to the best for you no matter what the results of this audition.

I know this comes after the fact, but I was wondering if you performed your audition for anyone before going for real? I ask because Josef Hofmann in his book "Piano Playing With Piano Questions Answered" says:

"Before you have played a composition in public two or three times you must not expect that every detail of it shall go according to your wishes."

Emphasis mine!

Best of luck.


"Hunger for growth will come to you in the form of a problem." -- unknown
#538035 - 02/07/02 01:41 AM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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And most (if not all) judges will have lots of first-hand experience with Hofmann's quote.

However, most judges will also expect a person auditioning for a major school or summer festival to have performed their audition repertoire a number of times before.

I don't think judges want everyone to put a perfect foot or even their best foot forward. They do, however, want to see a well-prepared foot.

#538036 - 02/07/02 07:40 AM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Quote
Originally posted by JS:
They do, however, want to see a well-prepared foot.


Bad joke ahead:

For some reason that reminds me of the movie "Alive."

laugh

#538037 - 02/07/02 05:05 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Amy Offline
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I had performed both of the pieces together in a recital 2 weeks before and also I have performed them individually in different recitals.


-Amy-
*Visit my page! http://www.expage.com/pianopalace
#538038 - 02/07/02 06:16 PM Re: The best way to prepare?  
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Then you're doing the right thing. Just keep it up. Be patient and persistent and it will happen.

And even if not Brevard, there are plenty of other summer festivals out there. Sewanee, Interlochen, etc...

Peabody maintains a good list: http://www.peabody.jhu.edu/placement/summer.html


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