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your practise drive... (Read 5966 times)

Offline redberry

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your practise drive...
« on: December 03, 2003, 10:18:27 PM »
Hey piano fans,
What is your "drive" to practise all day and..nights every day?
well you can probably say I love music-well , to practise every day for a period same piece over and over--it is not so fun-but to refresh your mind you can find something new every time to get it more interesting...
Like I read somewhere that one famous musician, a violinist-when she wake up in the morning-she ask herself-why I am doing this every day and sacrifice my life for music- that's a good thinking to know why one actually spend your all time for practising-there should be an aiming somewhere. ..just a thought ::)

Offline Wired

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #1 on: December 03, 2003, 10:59:13 PM »
Quote
well you can probably say I love music


That's my main reason. Music gives me something that my other talents don't... just a feeling that when I'm playing something, I feel good :)

I think in High School I always hoped it'd help me pick up the chicks too. That failed, though >:( (;)). I've since changed my goals to meet a girl that won't grow tired of listening to me play :)

Offline TwinkleFingers

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #2 on: December 04, 2003, 03:52:19 AM »
it worked for billy joel ;D
My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.

Offline ilovemusic

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #3 on: December 04, 2003, 01:02:51 PM »
Well, I sometimes get goosebumbs when I hear music,
and get really absorbed. I would really like to be able
to make music and move other people. The dream is
playing those pieces.

And these pieces are hard (Liszt, mainly), and I throw myself at them, and making progression in these motivates. I don't like practising pieces because
they are 'good' for me. (I'd rather eat cake, so to speak, if I can't digest them  ;D). I do practise finger-exercises and scales, but only in the morning when I am still to
sleepy to realise how boring they are. How they will be effective.


In the and it is all about picking up girls, of course.
Makes sense, evolutionary speaking too.

Offline BoliverAllmon

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #4 on: December 04, 2003, 03:42:21 PM »
This is  my reason. I heard the story of Rubinstein of how we was probably the greatest piano faker in the world. In his mid-thirties he began to think about his playing. He decided he didn't want to look back in life and see that he could of been something great so he got serious about the piano and we all know the rest of the story.

I feel the same way. I love music. I don't want to look back  in life and say well, If I only practiced more then maybe I could of done this, or maybe that.

boliver

Offline eddie92099

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #5 on: December 04, 2003, 06:03:42 PM »
Quote
I heard the story of Rubinstein of how we was probably the greatest piano faker in the world. In his mid-thirties he began to think about his playing


But he also said he acquired all his technique by the time he was 17,
Ed

Offline BoliverAllmon

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #6 on: December 05, 2003, 05:19:25 PM »
yes, but the point is that he didn't want to look back in life and say I could of been something better.

boliver

Offline bernhard

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #7 on: December 14, 2003, 02:27:36 AM »
People tend to wax lyrical about music and how it takes them to higher planes. Of course this is true. But there is an aspect to piano playing that is seldom mentioned, and that actually may explain why people are so keen to learn spectacularly difficult pieces as Islamey.

Piano playing is a very athletic activity. The only comparable instrument I can think of in terms of sheer physicality are the drums (have you ever seen the Japanese Kodo Drummers?).

So why people go on practising? Because after a while it gives you a high similar to running (and other extenuating sports/physical activities). In fact, unless you enjoy this sort of physical exertion, you will not last long or progress beyond a certain level on the piano. Just watch George Cziffra playing the Grand gallop chromatique on the Art of the Piano Video. He is transpiring more than a marathon runner! (and so is Emil Gilels).

When you start a program of running, you will not enjoy it straight away. In fact chances are that you will be asking yourself why you are putting yourself through such an insane activity. But if you persist, soon you will experience the runner’s high. Then you will be addicted. Likewise, in the beginning (and sometimes for a very long time) practising the piano is incomprehensible. However if you ever experience the pianist’s high, then you will be hooked on practice. By the way, this high comes from the physical, not the musical aspects of piano playing.

Best wishes,
Bernhard.
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline chopiabin

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #8 on: December 14, 2003, 09:09:13 AM »
I completely disagree with Bernhard. If we were simply into practice for its athleticism, then why would we ever want to learn more lyrical and less physical pieces like Chopin's nocturnes? Of course, learning a fast, difficult piece is fun as well, but we usually practice so much because we are in love with what we are learning. Practice has never felt like practice to me - I love every minute of it because I know I am progressing musically. By the way, it's perspiring, not transpiring.

Offline bernhard

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #9 on: December 14, 2003, 01:46:26 PM »
Chopiabin wrote:

“I completely disagree with Bernhard. If we were simply into practice for its athleticism, then why would we ever want to learn more lyrical and less physical pieces like Chopin's nocturnes? Of course, learning a fast, difficult piece is fun as well, but we usually practice so much because we are in love with what we are learning. Practice has never felt like practice to me - I love every minute of it because I know I am progressing musically.”

There is no need to completely disagree with me :'(. In fact I completely agree with you :). I am just adding something to what you said.

As I said, enjoyment of music is important, but I doubt it will get you through the drudgery of practice (playing a piece is very different from practising a piece). I still maintain that enjoyment of the physical process of playing – although rarely mentioned – is a very important if not the most important factor in keeping up with the practice necessary to learn and eventually play a piece.

The physicality involved in playing a piece is rarely mentioned because it is mostly unconscious. Consciousness is small, you can keep only so many items in it at any time (I am told it the maximum is seven plus or minus two). For instance, as you read this sentence, are you conscious (aware) that your eyes are moving? Are you aware that your feet are pressing the floor? Probably you were not, until I mentioned it. But for you to become conscious (aware) of these unconscious items (which were nevertheless there) something else had to drop out of your consciousness – like say the meaning of the text you were reading.

I suggest that some people naturally love the physical sensations associated with playing the piano – even though they may not be aware of it. They keep coming back to it for more and more practice, many times thinking it is because of their enjoyment of the music – simply because enjoyment of the music is what is foremost in their consciousness. Other people hate the physical drudgery, and this hate is likewise unconscious. So they cannot bring themselves to practise, no matter how much they may love the music, and are forever procrastinating and avoiding practice.

The solution to this problem  - if indeed this is the problem  - is to bring one’s awareness – at least momentarily – to the physical sensations of playing. Like I did when I mentioned the pressure of your feet on the floor. If this is the case -  an intense dislike of the physical aspects of playing -  once one is aware of such feelings one may be able to grind one’s teeth and decide to put up with it. And who knows? One may even experience pianist’s high and start enjoying it!

In fact I have heard of the opposite case: some pianists that in certain pieces will become so involved with the physical sensations of playing that they do not know what they sound like. They think they played beautifully, when that was not the case. And some pianists – again in certain pieces – will go to the extreme of recording themselves to listen to what they actually sound like.

None of this diminishes in any way the importance of being in love with the more musical aspects of what you are learning as well.

Finally, as for slow lyrical pieces, they have their own physicality as well. Have you ever heard of Tai Chi Chuan? Or Yoga? People who hate marathons and strenuous physical exercises tend to be attracted to these alternative sorts of physical activity. Not wishing to belittle their other dimensions (practitioners of these arts tend to wax lyrical about their spiritual aspects as much as pianists like to wax lyrical about the musical aspects of their pieces), I still maintain that in order to learn yoga or taichi, you must enjoy their particular physicality. So even for a slow lyrical piece (perhaps even more so!) what I said still stands.

Best wishes,
Bernhard.

The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline dinosaurtales

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #10 on: December 16, 2003, 04:34:29 AM »
Well, I agree with you Bernhard!  The physical nature of the playing is one of my favorite reasons to do it - when I rip off a cool passage it just *feels* so cool!  Of course it took lots and lots of tiring practice to do it, but it's worth it in the end.  

Just like in hockey.  You would die if you knew how many truly pathetic *shots* I took with the puck before I could finally rip one into the top corner from the top of the circle.  That one was worth it, too!

Of course, with music there is more to it than just the physical making of it, but it's still one of the fun parts!  And you are right, it is athletic!
So much music, so little time........

Offline bernhard

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #11 on: December 16, 2003, 01:15:24 PM »
Hi, Dinosaurtales!

Thanks for the support! :)

I also find that it is very beneficial to one’s playing to practise pieces separating these two aspects (musical and physical).

The way to do this is to practise silently.  :o

You cannot do this on a real piano, but you can do it on a digital piano (or keyboard). Simply switch it off! It is quite amazing how much concentration it requires (since you cannot use your ears to guide you). It also highlights any technical problems that are likely to be overlooked because you are overwhelmed by the sound of it all. I use to have real problems with accurately hitting the notes in Chopin’s Op. 10 no. 1. Even at slow speeds it was hard going. Then I read that many pianists at the beginning of the 20th century used to practice on dumb keyboards (there was even an American inventor who perfected the so called Virgil Clavier). I started practising silently, and in a couple of days all accuracy problems were gone. Unbelievable! Because I was not worried about sounding good, or sounding musical, I could give my full attention to what my fingers (arms, forearms, shoulders, etc.) were doing, and I started to notice all sorts of obvious defective movements that once corrected put everything into place. Afterwards of course, I practised with sound as well.

Best wishes,
Bernhard.
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline trunks

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #12 on: April 17, 2004, 10:24:04 AM »
Behind every drive (or motivation or whatever) there is an underlying value. I used to be a secondary school (high school in the USA) teacher for some 12 years. I picked up the job for some values, the most obvious being the decent pay, then my love of teaching. Eventually I decided to quit for other values, namely to avoid frustration, to restore my health and to find a real life for myself rather than working for others in stray directions that are completely conflicting against my own.

Likewise I practise for my values - love of music, love of the pieces under practice, love of public performances, love of entertaining and touching people's hearts . . .

So before indulging in front of your piano, always ask yourself "Why?"
Peter (Hong Kong)
part-time piano tutor
amateur classical concert pianist

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #13 on: April 17, 2004, 02:01:09 PM »
I was about to mention exactly what Bernhard said... until he said it.  So I'm in complete agreement.

That high occurs in all aspects of pleasure: drug use, sex, physical activity, mental activity, etc.  Abstaining from this activity, once the "high" has been conditioned, often results in depression and withdrawal symptoms.  In fact, many of you mentioned pleasure as a reason.  This is the same thing.

This "high" is just one aspect of the drive.  There is another aspect to it:  fear of failure.  Some people do it because they have achieved a very high goal as percieved by others and once at the top, the are fearful of falling.  Some people do not even like playing the piano but they are very good at it.

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #14 on: April 17, 2004, 02:09:38 PM »
Quote
Like I read somewhere that one famous musician, a violinist-when she wake up in the morning-she ask herself-why I am doing this every day and sacrifice my life for music- that's a good thinking to know why one actually spend your all time for practising-there should be an aiming somewhere. ..just a thought ::)


I don't like the questioning part.  Does she have short-term memory loss that everyday she wakes up, she can't remember what she did the day before?  I'm sure she was just exagerating and attempting to make her art more romantic.  I hate romanticism - it removes actuallity and turns it into Lala Land:

"Me and my art was fate."

"I don't know what I'd do if my hands were cut off from my body."

"It's God speaking through me."


Offline bitus

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #15 on: April 17, 2004, 09:11:55 PM »
Indeed, practising has it's physical rewards, like the feeling that my fingers are warm, that blood actually flows trough my hand, my heart is beating really fast, adrenaline rushing through my body, etc. But as Bernhard said it, it only comes after a while, and if you only practice for that "high", then there will be little progres.
My practise drive is my motivation... i am very motivated by a competition or a recital, therefore i practise like crazy for anything like this.
I am also addicted to practising... i wasn't like this 8 months ago when i would practise just to keep in shape. Now, since it's my priority, i practise every day without even counting how many hours. Since i started to practise seriously i have a 4.0 GPA... because discipline in one aspect of life will have it's effects in all aspects.
Also, one of the most important parts for me: i am given a talent by God, and by not practising, i am wasting both the talent and the time God gave me. And He is just enough to reward me for my work.
The Bitus
Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
To guide the future, as He has the past.

Offline ThEmUsIcMaNBJ

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #16 on: April 17, 2004, 10:49:54 PM »
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Also, one of the most important parts for me: i am given a talent by God, and by not practising, i am wasting both the talent and the time God gave me. And He is just enough to reward me for my work.
The Bitus


Enter ed...

Shagdac

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #17 on: April 18, 2004, 09:10:03 AM »
I also have to agree with Bernhard. Yes, I do practice for the mere love of music and the pieces that I am working on, but there is DEFINATELY a physical side to it as well.  My feelings are similar to what Bitus wrote. I too, feel "addicted" (if you call it that) to practicing/playing. It actually is "fun"...an enjoyable experience. I know when I'm driving home,after working a 12 1/2 hour shift....the closer I get to home, the faster I drive....I can't wait to get home and Practice. I know my heart beats faster, respirations increase, adrenaline increases....and during the process of playing as well.  To actually think about...it sounds kinda "nutso", but one's body becomes accustomed to feeling a certain way and reacting phsysiologically in response to certain stimuli, that one finds pleasurable. This past Friday night, my family went to a hotel with another family....after arriving I happened to notice a beautiful grand piano past the lobby area near the atrium. That did it....I didn't want dinner, didn't want to swim, do anything with the family....I couldn't stand it till I could sit and play for awhile, almost like needing a fix!

So yes, I do play because I love music, and I love to progress technically, and there's nothing like nailing a piece that I've been working on and finally "gettin' it!".
But there are definate physical changes that take place when playing the piano, or doing ANYTHING that the body and senses find as stimulating, exciting, passionate and fun!

Just my thoughts!


Shag :)

Offline Motrax

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #18 on: April 18, 2004, 10:42:13 PM »
I practice because I want to have perfect technique, and no amount of talent (or at least the talent I may possess) can substitute disciplined practice. I used to play an hour a day, skipping here and there. Now I do my best to practice at least three hours every day, and I can really see the difference after only a couple of weeks. I also feel much more comfortable at the piano.
"I always make sure that the lid over the keyboard is open before I start to play." --  Artur Schnabel, after being asked for the secret of piano playing.

Offline bitus

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #19 on: April 19, 2004, 04:57:46 AM »
same here, Motrax
Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
To guide the future, as He has the past.

Offline goalevan

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #20 on: April 19, 2004, 07:07:52 AM »
same here Bitus

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #21 on: April 21, 2004, 04:30:09 AM »
I have the best reason of all!

I play because it impresses girls which means I can get laid! :o

That's the best reason of them all! ;)






So why do pianists have average-looking wives? :-/
Or aren't married? :'(

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #22 on: April 21, 2004, 04:31:35 AM »
Who cares about marriage when you're getting laid left and right!

And up and down and front and back.  ;D

Offline Clare

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #23 on: April 22, 2004, 10:40:09 AM »
Hey, man. If practicing is to get the girls, what should a girl practice for? It sure doesn't drag in the guys.
I've been wasting my life. I knew I should have become a tennis player.

Offline bernhard

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #24 on: April 22, 2004, 11:57:51 PM »
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Hey, man. If practicing is to get the girls, what should a girl practice for? It sure doesn't drag in the guys.
I've been wasting my life. I knew I should have become a tennis player.



And since when do the ladies need to do anything to have the guys throwing themselves at them? ;)
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline bernhard

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #25 on: April 22, 2004, 11:59:56 PM »
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Who cares about marriage when you're getting laid left and right!

And up and down and front and back.  ;D


Marriage is important:

Every man is incomplete until he marries.
Then he is finished

(Zsa Zsa Gabor) ;)
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline comme_le_vent

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #26 on: April 23, 2004, 03:45:39 AM »
faulty damper are you saying my wife is average-looking?

if so, ill beat you to a pulp, then eat the remains.
http://www.chopinmusic.net/sdc/

Great artists aim for perfection, while knowing that perfection itself is impossible, it is the driving force for them to be the best they can be - MC Hammer

Rob47

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #27 on: April 24, 2004, 12:28:37 AM »
This will sound stupid but my practice drive is vladamir horowitz.  I figure if I can't get the sounds he gets out of the piano I still have years of work ahead of me. (I realize i will never be as good of him so its like a pandora's box?? whats that called? catch 22?...wahtever the point is I'll practice forever ).



Also I enjoy practicing.

Offline bernhard

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Re: your practise drive...
«Reply #28 on: April 24, 2004, 12:34:59 AM »
Quote

So why do pianists have average-looking wives?


What about Claudio Arrau's wife? ;)
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)