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Andras Schiff, Brahms and the Question of Tradition
Much attention and mention is given Sir Andras Schiff's latest remarkable recording of both Brahms’ piano concertos with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Schiff's choice of instrument is a Blüthner grand piano built in Leipzig around 1859, the year in which the first D minor concerto was premiered. Schiff has changed foot in his views on period instruments and the recording can be seen as an ambitious attempt to scrutinize and fully bring out the true characteristics of Brahms' works. Read more >>

Topic: Im scared stupid  (Read 4779 times)

Offline ahmedito

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Im scared stupid
on: October 07, 2003, 02:31:30 AM
I play a recital this thursday in a packed hall.
I play the same recital on friday in another city.

Im scared silly! Im not sure anything will come out right.
For a good laugh, check out my posts in the audition room, and tell me exactly how terrible they are :)

Offline allchopin

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #1 on: October 07, 2003, 03:40:23 AM
Join the club (that I invented)  :-/

Obviously, since you are being payed to play a recital in a packed hall, you are very good and people will be pleased with anything that comes out of you (the piano that is).  I havent really learned to overcome nerves yet because I cant seem to be able to trick my brain into thinking its not a big deal.  But just try to pretend that the concert hall's lights are on, everyone isnt even paying attention to you, and that there are other peopl up on the stage with you. that way, it doesnt seem like a big deal, but I dont know how well the brain tricks itsself..
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline chopinetta

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #2 on: October 07, 2003, 11:51:36 AM
i don't know, but i've tried weverything just to get denerved on recitals. but somehow my brain, too, is not as stupid as its owner to be tricked!

argh! i'm suffering from the same syndrome that has infected you!
"If I do not believe anymore in tears, it is because I see you cry." -Chopin to George Sand
"How repulsive this George Sand is! is she really a woman? I'm ready to doubt it."-Chopin on George Sand

Offline ahmedito

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #3 on: October 08, 2003, 01:38:29 AM
The problem is I usually get really nervous, but this is the first time  that people are buying tickets to actually  listen to me play... alone!!!  
Its tuesday and they're already sold out. HELP!!!!
I definately dont feel ready to play...
UGH!
For a good laugh, check out my posts in the audition room, and tell me exactly how terrible they are :)

Offline chopinetta

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anywayRe: Im scared stupid
Reply #4 on: October 08, 2003, 03:40:34 PM
oh. now i see. i'm not being an optimist, but your situation IS bad... i don't know if i should encourage you. i was reading articles on behavioral sciences just a few minutes ago and according to researches, pessimists who, in the beginning of accomplishing a goal, would believe that they wouldn't be able to do it, in the end, were as successful as the optimists in accomplishing the tasks set. those pessimists who received encouragement had some trouble with the tasks.

"It is almost universally accepted that a positive attitude is the quickest road to success. But psychologist Nancy Cantor of the University of Michigan presented evidence late in 1986 that, for some people, a little 'defensive pessimism' may be the preferred route."

ok. i'm off to get articles on controlling pressure and overcoming nervousness for you. on the mean time, practice hard. do not disrupt your circadian rhythm or the sleep-wake cycle. studies show that humans are on their worst moods when the circadiam rhythm when the circadian rhythm gets out of sync.

so be sure to follow your internal clock on and before your performances.
"If I do not believe anymore in tears, it is because I see you cry." -Chopin to George Sand
"How repulsive this George Sand is! is she really a woman? I'm ready to doubt it."-Chopin on George Sand

Offline la_carrenio2003

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #5 on: October 08, 2003, 05:48:38 PM
Just go out there and do what you are able to do. This works for me: don't put such a pressure on yourself, be humile and think that you're going out to do what you do every single day. Don't overpractice these days. Don't think stuff like these: they payed, I have a responsability of playing well, etc. Think: if something goes wrong, what the h..l...
"Soli Deo Gloria".
     J.S. Bach

Offline BoliverAllmon

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #6 on: October 08, 2003, 06:10:10 PM
Listen, don't worry about mistakes, or what might happen. everyone makes mistakes. I have never gone to a recital that didn't have at least one mistake in it. just calm down. Don't be like me. My first recital, I worried so much that I caused my back to cramp on me. I couldn't get the pain to leave for nothing. I had to walk on stage and play without moving my back. I ended up playing without any note mistakes. I only got off tempo slightly at one spot.

boliver

Offline Hmoll

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #7 on: October 08, 2003, 07:07:17 PM
The people who are paying to hear you are spending money on something they want - hearing classical music live - and you have a gift to provide that for them.
Buck yourself up, and have confidence that you can go out and give the audience what they want - mistakes and all.
Don't work yourself up into a frenzy about the size of the audiences, and whether they are paying money.
Visualize the recitals in a positive way. Practice your pieces slowly. Don't do run-throughs of the program up to tempo on the days of the performances.
Finally, let us know how it goes.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline DW

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #8 on: October 08, 2003, 08:31:51 PM
8) Hey gals...just something to share..This is what I do when I have a concert recital...actually 2 things...I either keep myself occupied by walking around ( which is not really a good option ) or...this I find really good( listen to the mp of the song or other songs of the same nature by the same composer)...this sort of occupies my mind and calms me down. And most imp. of all, I get a really good start, caz I've been just so inspired by the mp, and thus wanted so much to play with my heart. U can try...it works for me.

Offline chopinetta

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #9 on: October 09, 2003, 10:46:22 AM
oh, yeah, i think that one helps too. but reverse psychology... what if he gets even more nervous because the music made him remember about the upcoming performance and envies the player of that mp3??

well, i think the suggestion IS good. i tried it once in a summer recital. i brought my diskman along and listened to Chopin till it was my turn. i did a good job.
"If I do not believe anymore in tears, it is because I see you cry." -Chopin to George Sand
"How repulsive this George Sand is! is she really a woman? I'm ready to doubt it."-Chopin on George Sand

Offline chromatickler

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #10 on: October 10, 2003, 06:11:55 AM
As a remedy for reverse psychology, listen to BAD performances of your recital program. For example, if you were to perform Chopin's op10-2, listen to Idil Biret and not Andrei Gavrilov. You'll certainly gain some confidence.

Offline allchopin

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #11 on: October 10, 2003, 07:17:38 AM
Where can I download these 'poor' performances - Id love to hear them.  And what makes them so bad?

Another tip for nerves is make the occaision seem more formal- for instance, smile!  :)   This actually will decrease the nerve level.  Also, make yourself comfortable at the bench (or chair even, as I might try in the future...)  Dont worry too much about looking like a statuesque pianist with straight posture- just be how you want to be (not that Im saying look SLOPPY).  Glenn Gould was known for his very low position on the keyboard and bent over posture- he played just fine.
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline ahmedito

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #12 on: October 10, 2003, 10:33:15 PM
OK.... I am hours away from fridays recital.
Thursday's went OK... its not the best Ive done. It is by far not the worst... The only problem is that I didnt feel good. I played everything on automatic, cause my mind was somewhere else entirely.

I woke up late, because the recital was at night ad I wanted to be more alert. I was in a really bad mood all day. I had some tortas for brunch (They're like meat sandwiches) and no dinner...  I did a slow runthrough in the morning and then played videogames all afternoon. (OK, I love videogames and they distracted me from being nervous)... I definately didnt listen to any music. I also read a bit. My wife helped me out with the household chores (Im 21 and married... were both musicians, she is a violinist). I went to the hall and did s runthrough of the begginings of the stuff I Was going to play, and I found out that my car had a flat, and it was going to storm trmendously that night, so that put me into a really bad mood.
All the time I played, I was thinking about my car, my teacher and everything except what I Was doing. Even so, the result wasnt bad at all, compared to other times IVe played in public. The poeple loved it. Im playing again today and I feel a lot more confident.

The audience was really quiet, which is rare here in Mexico... I also didnt start till everyone got settled down, which was strange to many that got there late.
Bach and Mozart were OK... no too bad..
Grieg was beautiful. I played a couple of those lyric pieces better thant I thought I could... although I had a memory lapse in one of them.
Prokovieff was OK, a bit stumbled in the first movement, but my glasses fell off in the third movement, so there was a VERY strange FFFF at the end of the movement. The piano literally creacked and groaned with that fortississimo passage....
Debussy was a bit rushed.
I was asked for an encore, but I was in a really bad mood and left the hall soon after.
Today Im feeling well. Lets hope everything comes out alright!!!
For a good laugh, check out my posts in the audition room, and tell me exactly how terrible they are :)

Offline eddie92099

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #13 on: October 10, 2003, 10:41:25 PM
Best of luck tonight!
Ed

Offline tosca1

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #14 on: October 11, 2003, 10:05:35 PM
Dear Ahmedito,
Well, how did your recitals go? Performance  anxiety is part of the concert pianist's life. There are the legendary stories of Artur Rubenstein who always anguished before a concert and even the diva Maria Callas whom we told had to be at times pushed on to the stage.
If you can simply focus on the music and enjoy your playing then the audience will respond with enjoyment too.

Hope your recitals were wonderful.
Robert.

Offline ahmedito

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #15 on: October 12, 2003, 12:26:04 AM
Here's my RR on the second recital...

It was packed. The city where I played is beautiful and I was in Awe of the many natural and arquitectural wonders here. The place where I played is very old. Its almost 500 years old, and I could feel a great history and acustic...

Too bad the piano was horrible. It sometimes sounded like a clavichord... so, of course the bach and mozart went over pretty well. Grieg was bad due to the piano, but prokovief and debussy went OK.
I believe firmly that if I had played as well as I played on friday in the first recital, I would have done MUCH MUCH better, but the piano was killing me.
Even so, the people understood this, and many loved the concert I was asked for two encores, and I played enjoying every moment. First encore I played was a Mexican piece by Manuel Ponce. I played his Intermezzo... afterwards I played Gershwin's Summertime. I enjoyed playing and I Realized some things.

A positive outlook is vital to playing well. I found out that I know this music by heart and had nothing to worry about. Being happy helped me play better. Not matter what the piano is like, play from your heart.
Most of all, I found out that everytime I close my eyes while playing (almost everytime) I completely loose my concentration. This time I kept them open and I Was totally connected.

Thanx for all your help!
For a good laugh, check out my posts in the audition room, and tell me exactly how terrible they are :)

NetherMagic

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #16 on: October 12, 2003, 12:48:01 AM
Ahmedito congrats on your dual performances  ;D

Offline la_carrenio2003

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #17 on: October 12, 2003, 07:28:27 AM
Felicitaciones ;)
"Soli Deo Gloria".
     J.S. Bach

Offline chopinetta

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Re: Im scared stupid
Reply #18 on: October 12, 2003, 12:11:21 PM
well, congrats! that proves it. the circadian rhythm theory was right!! ;D
"If I do not believe anymore in tears, it is because I see you cry." -Chopin to George Sand
"How repulsive this George Sand is! is she really a woman? I'm ready to doubt it."-Chopin on George Sand
 

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