Adrian Allan wrote: ↑Wed Nov 08, 2017 6:18 pmI agree with what you are saying - I also spent a number of years playing at restaurants and during the process I learnt how to instinctively read the mood of the audience, and adjust my playing to suit.Rognvald wrote: ↑Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:40 amAdrian Allan wrote: ↑Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:30 pmI agree with what you are saying, but how do we cure this "problem".
Should younger players need to undertake some sort of training on the subject of engaging general audiences?
And what format should that take - eg. they must take a residence at a restaurant playing popular requests?
I would like to address these remarks to you and Traveler based on your responses. In my opinion, CG's take a "backward first" approach to musical study and performance. The first goal of anyone studying an instrument should be to achieve a level of competence that would allow them to perform for others. Since Music IS communication, what is the purpose of intensive study if you never leave your bedroom or study and play to the same 4 walls? With whom are you communicating other than drywall or plaster? The reason I was attracted to Music was that I wanted a voice expressed in an artistic way and wanted to be able to say metaphorically: "This Is Me." So, my goal was performance. I had an advantage when I began studying the CG in that I was a well-advanced Saxophonist/Flutist who had been performing from an early age(early teens). I was a serious student, studied with two "world class" CG teachers and progressed more quickly than most students. I was also an adult with an agenda which gave me a focus that many younger players/students do not possess. Within two years, I began playing jobs in restaurants, wine tastings, weddings and wine festivals. My repertoire was very simple musically but I played it well. I had memorized half of my music and the rest I read from sheet music. As I progressed, my repertoire increased and became more sophisticated and many of my gigs included many CG standards. So, if your goal is performance, assemble 40 minutes of music you can play well and start banging on doors. You should never play more than two 40 minute sets with a 20-minute break and should have no problem repeating your program for the second set. This is a great introduction to performance since 1.) generally you are playing to Musical Neandertals, 2.) only a handful, if any, are listening, 3.) mistakes will generally never be heard and 4.) you get a paycheck at the end of the gig. However, it gives you confidence in playing before a group of people and you will not have the scrutiny that you would have in a dedicated CG concert where perhaps 10% of the audience has any music sensibility and the rest are just along for the ride. So, if you want to progress you have to be able to play a simple song. Play it cleanly, play it with expression and put your name on it. It gives you a starting point with a pathway to the future and gets you out of the bedroom and onto the stage. Play a simple song. And, NEVER PLAY FOR FREE!!! PLAYING AGAIN . . . Rognvald
However, I fear that performing opportunities, even informal ones, are limited - we have become a society of digital downloads. And thus many technically excellent players only have experience of very controlled and sterile exam conditions or masterclasses, and the whole potential to reach out to a more general audience is completely missed. Sadly, the way to go seems to be to get a lot of views on Youtube, and we are all slaves to a virtual world of clicking and listening through headphones. It's a poor compromise, but better than never being seen or heard at all.
Some of those easier Sor pieces have lots of tickle-the-brain per unit of difficulty. In other words, you get a lot of good music for relatively less effort. I like his study in D major, too. It goes well with that B minor study.For me, this is a great illustration of where my ambitions are now...
DenisJ_III wrote: ↑Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:54 amExactly the pieces I look for. I'm enjoying playing so much more as a result of not constantly struggling at a technical level. Struggling musically is more rewarding, somehow.
Yes, I agree. And what really annoys me is that apparently many people attempt, and evidently succeed in manipulating YouTube's search algorithms - and then some viewers believe that the best videos are always to be found at the top. I've seen videos telling people how to do this - and people spend many, many hours on it! It's like many people believe that "succeeding" by gaining "likes" and "subscribers", is the way forward...Rognvald wrote: ↑Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:24 amWe are living in a world that is quickly destroying what previous generations called the human condition. It is an increasingly artificial and superficial world where "likes" on a blog post or "YouTube" by hordes of anonymous brain-dead automatons portend to determine a person's worth.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words . . . outstanding example Denis! Playing again . . . RognvaldDenisJ_III wrote: ↑Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:12 pmI realised some time ago that my playing technique was never going to equal my ambition in terms of complex pieces. More recently it dawned on me that my playing had to satisfy me before anyone else. So now, I am motivated by the most simple of pieces, just as long as they seem to me to be beautiful. All that effort that used to go into building speed or impossible stretches now goes into trying to play well
(This is probably obvious to most players, but then I've always been a slow learner.)
For me, this is a great illustration of where my ambitions are now...
And the reverse is true; you play the easier pieces for a time and suddenly the harder ones feel easier.Rick Beauregard wrote: ↑Thu Nov 09, 2017 3:26 pmI have to add though, that after working hard to improve my skills on harder pieces, then going back to the simple ones I thought I knew, they are so much better. There is always something new to unpack or discover in those Sor studies or Lagrima. In this way, like three steps up and two steps back, I think I am getting better.