How to Prepare for Juries!
Since it’s almost the end of the semester which means that music students are starting to think about Juries, the end of the year performance exam that happens in music school all across the nation! It can be a very stressful time but I do have a few tips to help you out!
- Try to practice your pieces in many different ways: I’m a big fan of visual, oral and kinesthetic learning and I think that it can be a great way to deeply know your music. So in addition to playing, try closing your eyes and see the keyboard, or whatever instrument you’re playing, all the way through your piece. See the instrument and your finger playing it. You can also practice seeing the music when you close your eyes to get an almost photographic sense of the piece. For oral learning, you can sing your piece or you can practice hearing how every cord and line sounds in your head. To learn kinesthetically, try to mime your piece on the floor or in the air, away from the instrument so you see what the body placement of your arms and hands should be. This will help you know you piece physically, without actually being at the instrument.
- Practice in every situation: Play for other people, play in different environments, play with the light on or off, play in different rooms, etc.
- Do the visualization practice: Sit down, meditate and very quietly close your eyes and imagine your entire journey from beginning to end. From the moment you walk into the room, how you introduce yourself, how you feel. Try to simulate your jury performance in your mind as much as you can. Doing this ahead of time is so useful because you will familiarize yourself with the process, reducing stress and making you feel more prepared!
I hope those tips will help you and best of luck on juries this year!