Expecting More From Yourself

Far too often, musicianship is compromised in an ensemble setting. Focus drags, motivation lacks, and our general ‘nit-picky’ attention to detail diminishes. While playing in a large ensemble like an wind symphony or orchestra may seem to mask some errors, it simply does not. Playing to the best of your abilities regardless of the level of the musicians around you can only yield positive outcomes.

If you notice your articulations are not as clear as they should be, don’t settle for “its good enough”. Do not let others around you dictate your playing: whether it’s a high school group you are asked to fill in for, or a big time band, take it seriously and expect your best at all times.

Also, do not wait for the conductor to point something out. Constantly assess your playing and others’ playing around you. Of course, nobody needs a ‘backseat maestro’ correcting others, just be the technique police for yourself. There is always something to make better.

If none of the aforementioned interests you, playing to your peak is also much more fun.

Deliberate Practice

Hello All!

Being my first blog post, I will start slow. I used to think that more hours in the practice room meant more improvement. However, not everything is symmetrical and we can end up doing much more “work” for the same result. This is when I learned about the concept of Deliberate Practice: a practice tool, psychological theory, and immense help to our studies. I have attached a link to the website Study Hacks (another great resource for simplifying success) that explains this concept much more eloquently than I can.

Some of the main themes I took from this are as follows:

Playing is not Practicing

Deliberate Practice is very focused, methodical, and planned

Work hardest on your weaknesses

“…busyness and exhaustion should be your enemy”

Do less. But do what you do with complete and hard focus. Then when you’re done be done, and go enjoy the rest of the day.”

 

http://calnewport.com/blog/2011/11/11/if-youre-busy-youre-doing-something-wrong-the-surprisingly-relaxed-lives-of-elite-achievers/