Auditions, competitions and live performances
Students work like crazy up to the big day and what happens? Several tough spots fall apart even though they’ve worked on them for weeks or months. If they’re lucky that doesn’t affect the rest of their performance, which would have been fine if not for those trouble spots. It is not a lack of talent and you’ve given them all of the information they need. It is the WAY they practice/learn
The missing link in an excellent performance, eliminating performance anxiety, developing regular practice habits and more
Why are a few so much better than others? Research in the fields of cognitive and behavioral neuroscience and psychology show it is not just the amount of practice, it is also the type of practice – and both can be taught to the point they become an enjoyable challenge. Once students learn to play as they would like, and do it over and over again in practice, there is little anxiety about what will happen and what remains is fearless expression and joy. One researcher calls this Flow, and some people call it ‘the zone’.
There is little time to teach this in lessons / rehearsals
We’ve had the good sense over the years to separate out areas of study like theory, ear training and history into their own areas of development. Yet we leave most of the study of how to work while practicing/learning, the single most important factor in developing skill at any level, to the student to figure on their own! The few that figure it out and do it regularly seem exceptionally talented.
The way skill development works is highly unintuitive, so most of what is tried does not work well, and is discouraging
Left to their own devices even the best attempts by most students do not come close to regularly using the techniques that we know allow the brain to produce the best, fastest and most robust learning. Now research in cognitive and behavioral neuroscience and psychology that is available to all shows us how it is done.
See the Live YouTube Video of my Practiclass at Different Institutions Around the Country!
Everyone is capable of this
By learning to use the brain the way it learns best we can improve significantly in minutes (see the live YouTube videos of my Practiclasses at different institutions around the country) and continue this significant improvement week after week. How far one wants to pursue virtuosity is simply up to the desires, goals and time allocation of the student. Every performance along the way, from very beginners to the most advanced, can be strong and satisfying, and lessons become a fun challenge and exchange of ideas and artistry. Research shows that genuine improvement, much more than just encouraging words, creates enthusiasm for more and more work.
If at first you don’t succeed try doing what your teacher told you the first time
The teacher is the expert. Development of artistry, technique, repertoire and other areas are left to that expert. Teaching high-efficiency learning allows students to meet these goals consistently. No more repeating things and constantly trying to solve ongoing performance issues. Each rehearsal is about moving forward. Learning how to learn simply allows one’s teaching to flourish in every student by allowing them to truly learn how to use that teaching in their work.