Inspiring Characters

 

Dear Fellow Music Lovers,

We often come across truly inspirational characters in our journey through life – characters who help us navigate through the minor setbacks to the torrents of uncertainty, in whatever field.  In the few years that I was privileged enough to learn from Dr Geoffrey Lancaster, he opened my mind (along with many other minds in the class!) to what music is, what music does, and what music has the potential to do.  I will always be grateful for his wisdom, insight and generosity of spirit which he shared with his students.

I was able to interview him recently before he moved to Western Australia.  To read the interview, click the link below:

http://www.themeandvariations.com.au/news-events/2014/09/q-a-with-dr-geoffrey-lancaster

The Practice of Practicing!

 

Dear Fellow Music Lovers,

I felt I would add another post here considering I have been a bit slack of late!  Here are two articles by the British-Australian concert pianist Stephen Hough.  The two articles deal with practicing, which is such an important topic for most (all) musicians.  Considering that the ratio of practicing to performing is about 500:1, the way we practice is of the utmost importance.  Personally, I am a firm believer that the different ways you practice is much more important than the amount of repetitions or the number of hours spent on the piano bench.  Keep mixing it up so that you don’t get bored!  Anyway, hopefully Mr. Stephen Hough sheds some more light on the topic.  Enjoy!!

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/culture/stephenhough/100070997/the-practice-of-practising/

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/culture/stephenhough/100074818/practising-for-lovers/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

The Art of Listening

 

Good Morning Music Lovers,

I stumbled across this clip many weeks ago and thought it was worth sharing.  The pianist/conductor Daniel Barenboim is regarded as one of the great giants of the music profession, especially with his interpretation of Beethoven.  Here he talks about the value of listening to music, not just hearing it, which is quite different.  I would dare say that most of us hear music throughout our day – in the car, at work, at the gym or even in the elevator, but hearing and listening are different things indeed.  Enjoy!

Why Procrastinators Procrastinate…

Dear Fellow Music Lovers,

Actually, this particular post applies to more than just the lovers of music.  I guess it would apply to the lovers of productivity, time management, task achievement and self satisfaction!  We all know what it feels like to get side-tracked by facebook, youtube, twitter, etc. so we can all relate to the feeling of guilt at the end of the day when we haven’t achieved what we wanted to.  I have only read part one of this article because I realised, I am myself procrastinating from my own practice!  (This Schubert Impromptu won’t learn itself).  But, it’s definitely worth the read and might offer some insightful advice for us all.

Happy reading!

Part One: http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/10/why-procrastinators-procrastinate.html

Part Two: http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/11/how-to-beat-procrastination.html

AR

How to Make a Living as an Artist

Dear Fellow Music Lovers,

Happy New 2014 to you all!  I came across this read some time ago and felt it was deserving of a share.  The term ‘art’ encompasses all (or most) forms of creativity, so this article applies to more than it appears to.  I guess the stand out feature of this read for me was point 1, ‘make good art’.  We forget that with most things, human beings desire ‘the best’, or ‘superior quality’ or ‘value for money’, therefore it is important that when we create art, we create it well.

Enjoy!

http://www.actionhero.org.uk/2013/12/how-to-make-a-living-as-an-artist/

The Value of Music – Karl Paulnack

 

Dear Fellow Music Lovers,

I came across this some time ago and read it on the odd occasion when I feel down about the music ‘industry’ or when I need to give some inspirational advice.  When one compares a musician to the doctor, lawyer, architect, engineer, etc. sometimes it is hard to see the relevance or importance music plays in our lives.  Will the earth stop spinning if there is no music?  No, of course not….but I think the world would be a bleak place without it.  Going to concerts and hearing music may seem like the little extra, the little luxury that is nice to do…but it’s amazing what a difference those little extras make when things aren’t going so well.  One only has to mention Messiaen and the Quartet for the End of Time to know what I mean!  So, if you have a spare 5 mins, definitely worth a read.

http://www.bostonconservatory.edu/music/karl-paulnack-welcome-address

AR

What should happen when a phone rings?!?!

 

Dear Fellow Music Lovers,

We have all been in a concert or performance situation when a mobile phone decides to alert its owner of the incoming call or message.  I fully realise that some calls are of the utmost importance and cannot be missed.  However, why individuals choose not to silence their communication devices remains a mystery for performers and other audience members alike.  So, when attending a concert, knowing full well that the presence of silence is just as important as the punctuation of sound…..please turn off the phone!  I saw this video this morning and felt it deserved a share!

http://www.artsjournal.com/slippeddisc/2013/10/new-video-concerto-is-stopped-by-cellphone.html

AR

Blog – Fun facts and useful tips!

Dear Musicians and Music Lovers,

I will be adding clips, websites, audio files, articles and general information to this space that I believe people would benefit from.  Knowledge is power and sharing is the key to knowledge….so why not pass it around.  Most recently I viewed an article on practice – definitely worth a read.

It can be viewed on:

http://www.bulletproofmusician.com/why-the-progress-in-the-practice-room-seems-to-disappear-overnight/

Practice hard!!

AR

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