Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Discussions relating to the classical guitar which don't fit elsewhere.
Cynegils
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by Cynegils » Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:00 pm

Recently, I've realized that stage fright-- the fear that I might perform badly-- is not my real trouble. What prevents me from performing is the certainty that I will perform badly.

This reply by markworthi made me :lol: :lol:
chrisW3 wrote:
Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:02 pm
in the sense that if you miss or fluff a note the bottom seems to completely fall out of the piece you're playing and all mood and momentum disappear. It's immediately obvious to everyone that you've made a mistake (or seems it).
This is precisely why performance anxiety is so overwhelming to some people. Someone who thinks that all mood and momentum disappears, and that the bottom falls out due to one missed note is likely to feel mortally terrified at the prospect of playing in front of an audience. While CG does require a certain level of perfectionism, I'm sure you will accept that one fluff note will not ruin any piece. Performance anxiety is the number one fear in humans (do you remember the Seinfeld joke?) and overcoming it starts with removing exaggerated notions of perfection. That said, I start shaking whenever anyone asks me to play :lol: !

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:22 pm

Cynegils wrote:
Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:00 pm
Recently, I've realized that stage fright-- the fear that I might perform badly-- is not my real trouble. What prevents me from performing is the certainty that I will perform badly.

This reply by markworthi made me :lol: :lol:
chrisW3 wrote:
Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:02 pm
in the sense that if you miss or fluff a note the bottom seems to completely fall out of the piece you're playing and all mood and momentum disappear. It's immediately obvious to everyone that you've made a mistake (or seems it).
This is precisely why performance anxiety is so overwhelming to some people. Someone who thinks that all mood and momentum disappears, and that the bottom falls out due to one missed note is likely to feel mortally terrified at the prospect of playing in front of an audience. While CG does require a certain level of perfectionism, I'm sure you will accept that one fluff note will not ruin any piece. Performance anxiety is the number one fear in humans (do you remember the Seinfeld joke?) and overcoming it starts with removing exaggerated notions of perfection. That said, I start shaking whenever anyone asks me to play :lol: !
Performance is very simple and insignificant matter.
One have just to overcome it ...it is the same as fear of water for example... and one have to learn swim to overcome it. I feared water a lot been small child. But when I was 12 someone tricked me to jump in a lake in a deep place... he told me it is not deep, but it was... it was another boy...:) so I had to swim few meters to shore... but I did... and in a week I swim to another side of the lake 600 m maybe and back. I should add that I had some limited skills regarding swimming too :)
To do performance one have to:
1. to say and convince yourself that he has no fear, NO FEAR! NO FEAR!
(having in mind that one have some limited at least beginner' skills of playing too :) )
2. and then to do it as many times as one could in any convenient moment.
but.. if one say to yourself - Oh.. it is so scary, oH I fear that - then that is exactly what one will feel doing it - FEAR...
Stop telling yourself that you afraid it!
Tell to yourself that you have NO FEAR! NO FEAR!
Tell it again and again!
tell it when you do it!
Before you do it.
After you failed, felt scared etc.
Just tell it and convince yourself - and
you will have NO FEAR!
I'd better speak by music...Please listen my guitar at Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, etc.

JohnB
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?s

Post by JohnB » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:30 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:22 pm
Just tell it and convince yourself - and
you will have NO FEAR!
Perhaps.

Some people are more prone to it than others. There are many renowned classical musicians at the very top of their powers who suffered greatly from performance anxiety throughout their careers. Sadly, some musicians even resort to beta blockers (I heard a violinist saying "well it stops my arm shaking" in an interview).

There is a very interesting article on the subject, dating from 2014, in the UK Daily Telegraph newspaper (online). In part of the article the very fine UK pianist Steven Osborne talks about his experiences and how he deals with anxiety. It is well worth reading the article - I really do recommend it.

I suspect a link to the article wouldn't be allowed here, but if you Google on "stage fright: classical music's dark secret" the article should appear near the top of the results.

(Incidentally, one of the most memorable recitals I have ever been to was Steven Osborne performing Messiaen's "Vingt regards sur l'Enfant-Jésus" - a remarkable pianist.)
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso"

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?s

Post by AndreiKrylov » Thu Dec 28, 2017 7:15 pm

JohnB wrote:
Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:30 pm
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:22 pm
Just tell it and convince yourself - and
you will have NO FEAR!
Perhaps.
Some people are more prone to it than others. There are many renowned classical musicians at the very top of their powers who suffered greatly from performance anxiety throughout their careers. Sadly, some musicians even resort to beta blockers (I heard a violinist saying "well it stops my arm shaking" in an interview).

There is a very interesting article on the subject, dating from 2014, in the UK Daily Telegraph newspaper (online).
Thanks John! Interesting article!
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/musi ... ecret.html
few quotes from it:
"ten years ago, during a performance of Mozart’s 23rd Piano Concerto, he suddenly started worrying that he was about to forget the next note.

“The feeling got stronger and stronger,” he recalls now. “I didn’t actually forget anything but it felt like the water was rising and lapping just under my nose.” Osborne was so disturbed by this experience he sought help from a cognitive therapist. “I learned a few tricks, like imagining I was somewhere lovely and unthreatening before a performance, like a flowery meadow. It helped, but I never felt it was a long-term solution.”

Then, a few years later came the real bombshell, during a performance of Rachmaninov’s First Piano Concerto. “This was like an earthquake because this time I really did have some memory lapses, and this made me think the whole performance was about to go off the rails. It was so disturbing, and it kept happening. I really began to wonder whether my career was over. Each time, before I went on stage, I began to think, ‘How can I go on playing the piano, if this is what it’s going to be like?’”

Osborne is not alone in his suffering. Many musicians have similar terrors, and often they involve alarming physical symptoms such as a racing heart and trembling fingers. Classical performers are especially prone to it, because accuracy and virtuosity are at such a premium. Make a mistake in a jazz break, and few will notice; make one in a string quartet and everybody will.
Unsurprisingly most musicians like to keep their problems with stage-fright under wraps, ..."
"There are various ways to tackle this debilitating condition. One of the most popular is also one of the easiest: you just take a surreptitious swig from a hip flask, as many orchestral musicians have done and still do, or you pop a pill. These dull the feelings of anxiety that can lead to mistakes. A 2012 survey among German orchestras found that almost a third of musicians used Valium or beta-blockers, which are far more effective than alcohol, and with fewer sideeffects.

The problem is that, by dulling nerves, pills or alcohol also dull the edge of tension and inspiration that makes for a great performance. "
Then there are the psychological aspects, which include unhelpful thoughts, like imagining the performance is going to be a disaster."

“The first one you can treat with things like exercise, which lower the amount of tension-inducing hormones in the body, such as cortisol,” says Williamon. “For the second one, cognitive therapies are very effective. It’s a matter of getting the musician to think about the situation in a more rational way. For example, instead of thinking that the audience is the enemy, and the performance will either be perfect or a disaster, you retrain the performer to accept that there will inevitably be a few mistakes, and the audience is on their side.”

Well.. this article perfectly confirms points that I brought in this subject before.
1. Performance is often not a "pinnacle" of someone music life, but recording in best technical and mental shape and while inspired is!!!!
2. Solution for stage fright is psychological self-training and change in someone global attitude to the subject;
a) one have to train oneself to have no fear by implanting this idea deep in subconcience.
b) it should be not only particular training regarding music only, but general one regarding different aspects and circumstances in life...then it will work for sure... one have to teach himself how to be able to physically overcome all kind of fears and anxieties one have, by long, years long physical and mental training...
3. Why we are afraid? Because of audience ?
But why do we play music - because of audience only? really?
No ...!
Do we read great Poetry or Novels because we have audience who hear our reading??
No way...
But when we read those poems - such a great music and great emotions and passions play in our mind!!
And so what? do we really want to perform these emotions for audience?
NO, NO NO!!!
We feel enriched by living a moments in this, not because we performing it to someone!!!
and then we come to my third point.
3. Performer should not give a damn about audience!!!
When he play - he (probably) enrich himself by touch of great music which he plays!
But .. there is another problem ... could he be really touched by something which he already repeated at least 1000 times? ? Could it be?
- Yes he could (teach himself another psychological "trick") and make himself to believe that he does (after 1000 times of playing and rehearsing it)
But... just think about your own experience - when have you been touched and transformed the most? -
first time when you heard or seen something really beautiful? or after you've seen 1000 times?
After you took it apart completely, calculated and recalculated it, measure and prepare all your feelings and emotions all smallest movements which you going to demonstrate to the audience!!!
Is it really the highest spiritual experience, the highest point of someone musical life to play something in 1000 or 10000 time to audience?...
It seems more like another completion of the beautiful ritual in cathedral of art which have immense amount of small and exact details and beautifications but could be actually quite meaningless mechanical exercise for someone who doing it ... or perhaps not?
I'd better speak by music...Please listen my guitar at Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, etc.

Marshall Dixon
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?s

Post by Marshall Dixon » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:34 am

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:22 pm

But .. there is another problem ... could he be really touched by something which he already repeated at least 1000 times? ? Could it be?
- Yes he could (teach himself another psychological "trick") and make himself to believe that he does (after 1000 times of playing and rehearsing it)
But... just think about your own experience - when have you been touched and transformed the most? -
first time when you heard or seen something really beautiful? or after you've seen 1000 times?...

Give me a thousand kisses, then a hundred
then another thousand, then a second hundred
then a thousand more...
- Catulus

“It was a morning like other mornings and yet perfect among mornings.”
- John Steinbeck, The Pearl

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?s

Post by AndreiKrylov » Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:00 am

Marshall Dixon wrote:
Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:34 am
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:22 pm

But .. there is another problem ... could he be really touched by something which he already repeated at least 1000 times? ? Could it be?
- Yes he could (teach himself another psychological "trick") and make himself to believe that he does (after 1000 times of playing and rehearsing it)
But... just think about your own experience - when have you been touched and transformed the most? -
first time when you heard or seen something really beautiful? or after you've seen 1000 times?...

Give me a thousand kisses, then a hundred
then another thousand, then a second hundred
then a thousand more...
- Catulus

“It was a morning like other mornings and yet perfect among mornings.”
- John Steinbeck, The Pearl
nice words!
yes absolutely i like beautiful piece of music even after 1000 times of playing!
yes I love my wife after 35 years of living together!
but... could we really compare feelings of love to a person and feelings about one piece of music which have to be performed?
is our love to a person as rehearsed and calculated and technically flawless and have to be ready to perform - like playing piece of music 1001 time?
do we have same feelings when we come to the top of the same mountain 1001 time as we had when we came there first time?
same feelings as a first time when we watch nice movie 1001 first time?
yes both mountain and movie could be nice, but are our feelings about them still will be as strong as the first time?
As strong..? as bright?... deep?....
I like performing! it is fun!
But now , because of technology, I can catch my moment of inspiration at any time and not to be distracted or interrupted, I can record it and this will be pinnacle of what I do ...
performance? it depends... I am not a machine...I could be sick, I could have trauma, could be tired, I could get older... :)
and one would say that it is pinnacle of what I do...? well...
I'd better speak by music...Please listen my guitar at Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, etc.

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mverive
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by mverive » Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:35 am

This is one of the reasons children often pick up musical instruments more quickly than we do. They're not as afraid of making mistakes as we are, and love the attention that we give them when they play. We, on the other hand, often get frustrated when we don't make the progress that we feel we could (or should) be making. We end up with unmet expectations, although to be honest, many of these expectations are goals that have been set to high. How often do we start to play a piece and then cringe when we hit bad notes? We feel that we're not any good, and compare our performances (consciously or subconsciously) with professional recordings, not fully realizing how heavily edited they often are.

If you don't already have a copy, consider getting "The Inner Game of Music", by Barry Green. He discusses many of these issues, and gives excellent advice on how to overcome them.

Mike
"(P)Lay on, MacDuff, And damn'd be him that first cries, 'Hold, enough!'"

chrisW3
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by chrisW3 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:12 pm

I find live music almost always more enjoyable than recordings. I think spontaneity and perhaps the energy of a performer are key. My favourite recordings are often of live performances too. Listening to jazz albums recorded in studios there is usually a strange inhibited feel. The same is true with classical but might not be as immediately obvious.

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:37 pm

"I find live music almost always more enjoyable than recordings. I think spontaneity and perhaps the energy of a performer are key. My favourite recordings are often of live performances too. Listening to jazz albums recorded in studios there is usually a strange inhibited feel. The same is true with classical but might not be as immediately obvious."
could you go and listen Glenn Gould?
Who will play like him?
what kind of recordings you use?
what kind of sound system?
in what environment?
Last edited by AndreiKrylov on Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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JohnB
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by JohnB » Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:03 pm

chrisW3 wrote:
Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:12 pm
I find live music almost always more enjoyable than recordings. I think spontaneity and perhaps the energy of a performer are key. My favourite recordings are often of live performances too. Listening to jazz albums recorded in studios there is usually a strange inhibited feel. The same is true with classical but might not be as immediately obvious.
Recordings can never come close to the experience of hearing music being performed live - being there in the venue. with the audience adding that additional "electricity" to the communication. I've been at orchestral concerts and piano recitals which have been recorded and either issued on CD or relayed over the radio later - and the recordings only give a pale reflection of the concert experience.
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso"

CactusWren
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by CactusWren » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:17 pm

There is a mismatch between the enjoyment of playing guitar and the expectation of performance. They aren't necessarily linked, IMO.

I started late, suffered from enormous nerves, wasn't taught how to perform, and really had no idea how to prepare. As a result, my early performance experiences were awful. Oddly, I've become a full-time working musician, but almost always I'm in a corner somewhere, and rarely do people pay full attention to me. Over a great deal of time I've become more comfortable with it, but only with pieces I've thoroughly prepared.

There was one performance, at a piano player's house, with about twenty people, where I played about twenty-five minutes of my best stuff, that I got a taste of why some enjoy performance. I had already played a gig and felt confident with the material, mostly Barrios, Recuerdos, Leyenda, etc. It was very nice, and I could feel their attention and how they were responding to the various musical gestures. Afterwards, I was exhausted! I think it was because I had the material down, and I found it easier to be surrounded by twenty people on chairs on a patio than sitting, remote and exposed, on a stage!

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:00 pm

JohnB wrote:
Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:03 pm
chrisW3 wrote:
Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:12 pm
I find live music almost always more enjoyable than recordings. I think spontaneity and perhaps the energy of a performer are key. My favourite recordings are often of live performances too. Listening to jazz albums recorded in studios there is usually a strange inhibited feel. The same is true with classical but might not be as immediately obvious.
Recordings can never come close to the experience of hearing music being performed live - being there in the venue. with the audience adding that additional "electricity" to the communication. I've been at orchestral concerts and piano recitals which have been recorded and either issued on CD or relayed over the radio later - and the recordings only give a pale reflection of the concert experience.
could you go and listen Glenn Gould? Richter? Paco?
Who will play like them?
who will replace them as listening experience?
is it "pale experience" to listen recording of great artist music by great artist instead of same repertoire by another technically perfect but emotionally cold player?
if live concerts of great artists are not available to you - then you would not listen music at all?

we are very different.. we have different circumstances, we all often live in different places, both physically and spiritually...
it is obvious that we could not have "same" views..
but...
simply rationally talking -
could you go and listen Glenn Gould? Richter?
Who will play like them?
Last edited by AndreiKrylov on Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Jeffrey Armbruster
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by Jeffrey Armbruster » Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:05 pm

"Performance is very simple and insignificant matter.
One have just to overcome it ...it is the same as fear of water for example... and one have to learn swim to overcome it. I feared water a lot been small child..."

Me too Andrei! and then later swimming became one of my favorite things. Now I love the water. I think that it's possible that exactly this will happen for me...or they'll find me drowned with my guitar at the bottom of a pool.


I wonder if putting a variety of large objects on the stage--pillars or sculptures or cardboard cutouts of trees--might help. You might be able to convince yourself that you were hidden away in a forest, out of sight, and that all those potentially hostile gazes were resting on the things around you instead of yourself. It may be that it's the gaze of all those people that freaks us out. Maybe deflecting the gaze would work.

Or just play on a stage in the dark. Or wear a mask?
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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:15 pm

Jeffrey Armbruster wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:05 pm
I wonder if putting a variety of large objects on the stage--pillars or sculptures or cardboard cutouts of trees--might help. You might be able to convince yourself that you were hidden away in a forest, out of sight, and that all those potentially hostile gazes were resting on the things around you instead of yourself. It may be that it's the gaze of all those people that freaks us out. Maybe deflecting the gaze would work.

Or just play on a stage in the dark. Or wear a mask?
that is what Richter was talking - that the whole thing have to be in the darkness, both stage and audience, so nothing will take away sound experience.
People talking about "listening" the music at concert, while in reality they watching the SHOW. AND WATCHING usually is more important for them than listening really... that is where most of "electricity" comes...
from seeing musicians. To the degree that sometimes they may play nothing, but move around dance, do theater - and "listeners" will be "electrified" even more than they actually listen...
I guess there are 2 separate things:
1.Music itself as audio, sonic waves
2. Show, Theater, Performance as visual stimulation...
This visual part, and our personal presence , which could have nothing to do with audio, sonic waves is somehow described as a MUSIC experience...
yet is it Music really?
Theater is great! Show is great!
But what is MUSIC itself if not audio, sonic waves?
I'd better speak by music...Please listen my guitar at Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, etc.

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mverive
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Re: Does anyone else NOT like performing?

Post by mverive » Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:30 pm

We are often our own worst enemies! Many of us started out at a later age, after being successful in careers and in other endevors, then get frustrated we we don't progress as quickly as we would like.

Familiar with Ethan Winer? Those of us who are lifelong programmers recognize his name as a prominent author of various books on the subject. Ethan set out to learn cello, and shares his experiences on his Cello site. You can do an online search for "Ethan Winer Cello", or "In the Express Lane: Learning the Cello as an Adult". Although he gives very specific instruction on cello, what he discusses is equally applicable to guitar or other instruments.

Mike
"(P)Lay on, MacDuff, And damn'd be him that first cries, 'Hold, enough!'"

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