Sunday, August 22, 2010

"Now" is the only time you've got

My tryout for the upcoming recital was a success
  • considering that there is never enough time, no matter how early you start to prepare
  • considering that the program is always longer than you think
  • considering that I didn’t experience any surprises: I ran into memory issues and technical difficulties exactly where I expected them.

    Practicing only gets you to a certain point. Beyond that, you have to practice performing by playing for people. Even recording isn’t the same.

    This experience, which I’ve had repeatedly, was hovering in the back of my mind during my next practice session after the tryout. I went over the sections of my program that needed attention. Then, I did another run through the entire program.

    The recording machine was on, no stops, no back tracking, keep going no matter what happens - and face the truth, listening to it later on. That’s the deal for a run-through.

    Suddenly, while I was playing, I caught myself making mental notes of the places that I would need to go over at the next practice session. How about fixing it right now? The second subject of Schumann’s piece “Soaring” needs more finger activity. I know that. I’ve been practicing that, waiting for it to become a skill I can rely on when I perform the piece.

    But how about doing the best I can with what I have, right now! That’s the difference between practicing and performing. You don’t get a second shot. What you get now is all you have - and being aware of that, maybe I can do better than I thought. 

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