Musician. Educator. Explorer.
Practice. It’s a loaded word in the world of artistry.
As musicians, we love to research, play, and perform music, but the middle part of practicing is often a challenging part of the experience!
Approaching your practice time with strategy is the best way to make practice not only more enjoyable but more productive. Simply setting aside time to play your music is not enough. Practicing is more than just time in the room – it can be a time to discover, explore and prepare ourselves to make magic outside of the practice room.
But how do we do that??
Here are some simple and quick strategies to implement in your next practice session – if you have any questions or want to discuss these points further, please reach out!
Quantity does not equate to quality
Just because you practice does not mean you learn. When approaching practice time, work on being present in the moment and removing distractions. If you are worried or preoccupied with phone notifications or anxiety over an upcoming exam, you will not get the most out of your practice time. Turn off your phone notifications!
Think about the motivation behind your piece and what you can bring to it
Why are you playing this piece right now? What can this piece teach you right now? Who was the composer, and in what context did they create this piece? Is it for entertaining or educating an audience? What do you want to say with it? How can you bring your unique style and energy to the piece?
Work on something….but work to learn not just to repeat
Pick a spot, section or chunk, and make a specific goal for learning. Are you cleaning accuracy? Are you working speed? Are you learning a line that is new to you? Are you working on performance factors for a section? Are you working on dynamics and interpretation on a part of the section? Really know what you are trying to do and learn in any given practice time, be it 10 minutes or 10 hours!
Practicing how to practice takes patience. Consider these strategies a part of your learning process just as much as learning the piece.
Wishing you productive practice sessions!
– Your Metasphere Mentor