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Adult Learner Success Stories? (Read 16474 times)

Offline nickadams

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Adult Learner Success Stories?
« on: October 02, 2013, 05:14:25 AM »
Hi I am an adult beginner and I was wondering if any adult learners (not people who played as  children and then came back to the instrument) who have been playing 4+ years could share the level they have reached?

It would be very motivating for me to know that there are people out there who have been through what I'm going through and made it to a high level.


Thanks



EDIT: As I said in reply 6, please respond only if you:
1.) Started for the first time as an adult (18+)
2.) Played for longer than 4 years
3.) Can play level 6-7 pieces competently

I'm not trying to be rude but I'm looking for a very specific thing.  :-\

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #1 on: October 02, 2013, 06:33:01 AM »
I think I started at 20.  Does that count?  Practiced a lot.  Got accepted to music school after an audition.  Sucked for many years going through three different teachers.  Then really learned how to play which blew away the university professors.  Like night and day.  Intimidated some people, including one of the teachers.  Gotten a lot better since then.  Can play super difficult things if that matters.  I make things look super easy even if it sounds difficult, which is why I don't like to perform.  I have very good technique, better than any of my teachers.  I'm proud of that but most proud that I can learn anything if I want to.

I don't know how motivating this is to you.  I'm special, you see.  Very few people can start from scratch and do what I did.  This especially applies to areas outside of the piano.  The difference between me and others: I'm physically lazy but mentally smart.  Most people are the other way around, which is why they keep on doing the same things over and over hoping that they'll get better.  Remember, practice makes perfect the way you practice.  Practice does not make perfect.

Eat a jelly belly when you need energy.

Offline ranniks

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #2 on: October 02, 2013, 07:10:40 AM »
Somehow: I can play 5-10 classical pieces. Most of which I shouldn't have started just yet (which is why I'm not excellent with them, but to a degree that I am satisfied/happy for now), but because I wanted to I did. I'm a 13-15 month beginner. I can play Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Anime music and recently a Grieg piece.

Offline timothy42b

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #3 on: October 02, 2013, 01:04:34 PM »
I started at 52.  (bad idea, if you have a choice don't wait that long)

I have never progressed much beyond SATB hymns and lead sheets, but I've done a considerable amount of playing for church services. 

There is no doubt that you can reach at least my level, and probably (with some good instruction and a bit of work) considerably above it. 
Tim

Offline mikeowski

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #4 on: October 02, 2013, 02:25:22 PM »
After not yet 3 years of playing (I'm 23 now) I'm almost done with the complete first Beethoven sonata. Also I played (after recently listening to a recording I didn't know existed, I think rather well) the 1st movement of Mozart's K332 and three visions fugitives in concert a few months ago. I might soon post the recording here so you and others can listen.
edit: I also work on the p&f BWV 862 and 866 which I'm also pretty much finished with.

Offline piano4kay

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #5 on: October 02, 2013, 03:16:16 PM »
Hi,

I started at age 47.  I believe with hard work and dedication you can progress nicely.  I don't think there are any shortcuts.  Finding a teacher who knows how to teach adults is important.  I've been through a few.  It amazes me how little some "teachers" know. Some are just lazy I have concluded. My first teacher had me choosing all of my music. The dots were not connecting, and I became frustrated.  My next teacher seems to have a better sense of what to assign to help me progress.  I started in Bach (Anna Magdalena's Notebook)  I have learned most of the pieces in this book. I also have learned two of the six sonatinas by Clementi.  I am currently working on Sonata in C K. 545 by Mozart.  I regret that I did not have the opportunity to start earlier than I did, but am so happy that I decided to.  It has been a wonderful journey so far.  I love to practice.  In fact, I have to fight the urge to practice more so that I don't develop an injury. My teacher discovered that I have perfect pitch.  I didn't even know it.  I'm hoping it will help me in some way along the road.  I also work on scales and Hannon.  I recommend a book for anyone who is starting later in life. Its called Playing the Piano for Pleasure by Charles Cooke.  Another book I enjoyed very much and is inspiring is The Piano Shop on the West Bank.  I have discovered pianos make ideal friends.  You get out of it what you put into it.  Best of luck.

Offline nickadams

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #6 on: October 02, 2013, 06:51:27 PM »
I appreciate the responses guys, but I'm really looking for people who have been playing longer than 4 years and can play level 6+ pieces competently.

If you fit this description, please please please respond because I have not been able to find anyone like this in all my searches, and I really need to see that there are people out there who have achieved what I'm trying to do.

Offline piano4kay

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #7 on: October 02, 2013, 07:20:32 PM »
I have been playing just under four years.  I didn't even know where to find middle C when I started. I believe you can do the same if you practice.  I am not playing very difficult pieces, but they are appropriate for my level, and I hope to get better and better. 

Offline piano4kay

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #8 on: October 02, 2013, 07:28:37 PM »
I just check.  The Pianist's Guide to Standard Teaching and Performance Literature by Jane Magrath.  According to her, the pieces I have recently been working on are at lever 6 and 7.  I have reached this in just under four years of playing.

Offline ranniks

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #9 on: October 02, 2013, 07:36:51 PM »
I appreciate the responses guys, but I'm really looking for people who have been playing longer than 4 years and can play level 6+ pieces without butchering them.

That last part sounds rude to me.

Anyways: of course there are going to be people who have played for 4 years after starting at the ages of 15/20/30/40/50/60/70/80/90 (not sure if someone 100 can move hands well enough to begin again). There are prodigies who can have the abilities that you speak of, but have achieved them in 2 years.

If someone on this forum dedicated every day to playing 3-5 hours worth of practise. Then certainly in 2 years they could play a lot of grade 6/8 piano pieces ''without butchering them''. You seem to misunderstand something: years say a lot, yes, but hours count much more.

Someone could play for 4 years, 1 hour each day.

Someone could play for 2 years, 4 hours each day.

The second person has more experience under his or her belt. Twice as much.

I'm a supporter of the 10.000 hour rule btw.

Also one more thing: besides hour, you need to have passion (in my opinion). Passion + hours = amazing things.


Offline nickadams

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #10 on: October 02, 2013, 07:37:13 PM »
I just check.  The Pianist's Guide to Standard Teaching and Performance Literature by Jane Magrath.  According to her, the pieces I have recently been working on are at lever 6 and 7.  I have reached this in just under four years of playing.

This is fantastic! Just what I was looking for!

Can you post any recordings of your playing?

Offline nickadams

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #11 on: October 02, 2013, 07:41:31 PM »
ranniks: I have changed the wording and I agree that it was rude.

Also, I'm really not trying to make this thread into a debate or anything I just really want to hear from people who meet the criteria in the OP.

I can start another thread where adults in general can talk about their progress (no restrictive criteria) if you want?

Offline ranniks

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #12 on: October 02, 2013, 08:01:46 PM »
ranniks: I have changed the wording and I agree that it was rude.

Also, I'm really not trying to make this thread into a debate or anything I just really want to hear from people who meet the criteria in the OP.

I can start another thread where adults in general can talk about their progress (no restrictive criteria) if you want?

Any person, beginner or not, will make significant progress if they have been playing 4+ years since they begun. What you do in those 4+ years will in the end show what you will and will not be able to play. And that does mean that one could learn for example Chopin's Ballade 1. If you want that piece to sound fantastic: do it like this:

First year: somehow play around 3000 hours of piano/practise.
Second year: Add 2000 hours of piano/practise.
Third year: Begin with the ballade 1 here. Put 2500 hours here. Dedicate 500 of which to techniques that benefit the ballade.
Fourth year: Finish with another 2500 hours here.

There you go. Depending on how much time you have, what you major and whatever you do with your spare time, you will either have a splendid ballade, or one not so splendid.

FYI: I'm not sure how dedicating 500 hours to techniques would help, since I have no idea how one would prepare for the ballade 1, but surely in the 10000 hours that you have accumulated, you will have the technique.

Also, people who do meet your criteria will maybe post, me posting here won't hurt your thread seeing as it only brings it up the page for others to look at.



Offline keypeg

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #13 on: October 02, 2013, 09:03:35 PM »
I dislike the wording of the OP both for the sake of the asker, and for the sake of persons answering.

Success in learning an instrument involves learning to play well or very well.  A "level" of a piece does not determine this.  People can play music that are listed "advanced" (grade 7, 8 etc.) in an amateurish or uncontrolled or whatever manner.  Playing a simpler piece well may be the work of a real pro.  In fact, my teacher refers to "no glory pieces" which are pieces that fail to bedazzle anyone, but can ONLY be played by an actual master.

If as an "adult beginner" as you define yourself (1 1/2 years?) you are aiming for those criteria, then you are aiming for the wrong things and that is not good thing.

But for those thinking of answering your question, anyone who has not met your criteria will have to think he or she is not "successful" or has not done something significant.  I suggest that criteria of success be set by a good teacher here, or by a professional level pianist, or advanced player who actually knows what is involved.  It may be that there are members here who played 4 or 5 years who have every reason to feel they are highly successful, but who have not played the kinds of pieces that you say are needed to be "successful".

I won't bother answering.  I played self-taught when I was a teen, and then touched the piano again 35 years later.  Not only is that more than a lifetime for some (younger) people, but there is a disadvantage to first being self-taught because of anything lingering that has to be unlearned.  I also think that the progress my teacher has allowed me to make really rocks, and I will not put it out here against that kind of criteria.

Offline nickadams

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #14 on: October 02, 2013, 09:38:12 PM »
But for those thinking of answering your question, anyone who has not met your criteria will have to think he or she is not "successful" or has not done something significant.  I suggest that criteria of success be set by a good teacher here, or by a professional level pianist, or advanced player who actually knows what is involved. 

I AM NOT trying to set a universal criteria of success. I am merely looking for examples of people who have achieved what I am trying to achieve.

This thread is getting derailed and I wish only those who fit the criteria in the OP would respond. If anybody else wants to chime in about adult learning could you please PM me or post in the other adult learners thread?

I AM NOT trying to insult anyone by making this thread, so please don't read into it any more than face value... If you fit the criteria, I would appreciate your post (thanks piano4kay) and if not please don't take offense and feel free to PM me or post in the other thread.

Offline landru

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #15 on: October 02, 2013, 10:49:36 PM »
I didn't quite start at zero when I started lessons 5 or 6 years ago (I'm 51). Maybe you could even say I started at less than zero because I was "self-taught" for over 30 years. I could read music but I had a hard time even playing Bach's easier minuets. My rhythm sense was atrocious and my practicing skills were as well. I had a lot to unlearn before I could learn.

Right now I'm doing a Bach WTC, Beethoven sonata op. 14 no. 1, Chopin's raindrop prelude (no. 15) and Joplin/Marshall's Swipesy Cakewalk. I think I am doing them competently and my teacher would probably agree with that - they are stretching my technique in a good way. They are either level 6 to 7. I have learned a lot of other level 6-7 (and some 8's) from Mozart, Schumann, Prokofiev, Messiaen, Dvorak, Debussy, etc.

As a less than modest poster tried to say above, anything is possible if you practice correctly. The easiest thing in the world is to just sit at the piano and "practice" i.e. mindlessly do the same things over and over again. It takes discipline to make each practice session "new" so that you challenge yourself to new heights rather than just making ruts. Too many times I catch myself doing the easy thing and not analyzing/thinking about my practicing.

Offline keypeg

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alternate title
«Reply #16 on: October 02, 2013, 11:03:53 PM »
I feel that I have been quite successful, and I also feel that the levels I reached are more than I had expected.  But I cannot share anything because I have not aimed for pieces graded at high levels.  It excludes anyone like me. 

Your title is "adult learner success stories" but in fact the only adult learners who can share anything are those who meet your own definition of success. 

Offline nickadams

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Re: alternate title
«Reply #17 on: October 02, 2013, 11:38:00 PM »
Your title is "adult learner success stories" but in fact the only adult learners who can share anything are those who meet your own definition of success. 

Yes you're right. I didn't realize it when I was making this thread, but the title and general tone do not at all match my intent.

Offline keypeg

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #18 on: October 02, 2013, 11:40:30 PM »
So many posts in these forums become vehicles of growth and learning.  I know that I have often posted for one intent, and then learned totally new angles along the way - or the whole group did.  I think this is happening here.  It is actually becoming quite interesting. :)

Offline muntjack

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #19 on: October 03, 2013, 12:59:26 AM »
My repertoire includes the following level 7 pieces



Op 64 no 2 Waltz in C#m

Nocturne in C#m op 20 Post

Prokofiev's Montagues and Capulets

Clair De Lune 

I am 33 and have been playing for just over 1 year.  Although I believe you never finish a piece, I can currently play these well enough that when I played them at my first piano lesson, the teacher (who had been playing for 40 years) said I needed someone more advanced than herself. 

 I don't believe I have any special gift for the piano.  If you are truly dedicated,  can make time for the instrument and learn how to use that time efficiently, and if you listen to yourself with a critical ear, there is no reason you can't achieve those goals.  I am currently working backward through the first Ballade and hope to be able to bring it to performance level by the end of my 2nd year.  It is more difficult, musically and technically, than the pieces you are giving yourself 4 years to reach.  It is certainly not impossible.

That said, it does concern me that you seem to be saying it won't be worth your time to learn if you can't play level 6/7 pieces in 4 years. Do you realize there are level 4 and 5 pieces that are just staggeringly brilliant?   Whether it's a Scarlatti Sonata or a Satie Gymnopedie or a  Beethoven Bagatelle, there is a vast and vital collection of music that exists below this arbitrary level you have set for yourself. 

Offline timothy42b

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #20 on: October 03, 2013, 02:47:14 AM »
This thread is getting derailed and I wish only those who fit the criteria in the OP would respond.

I don't know who made you boss of the world, but I didn't agree to it. 

If you aren't going to like the answers, don't ask the questions.

Tell me, what percentage of 8 year olds who start piano succeed?  My guess is about 1%.  I think it's quite possible a higher percentage of adults do.  But it's not a real large percentage.  It might be 5%.

What are you going to do with that knowledge?  Give it a try? or give up? 

Very few children ever get to the point of playing simple things fluently.  (they may indeed gain other benefits from their lessons)  I can do it, many of the other adult posters here can do it.  I can't play advanced repertoire and have no interest in it.  (FWIW, I play double high Bb's every day during my trombone warmup.  That's an octave above what most can play, and it's the result of 2 years lessons from someone who knew what they were doing, after several decades of no progress and frustration.  Don't get a teacher - get a good teacher!) 
Tim

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #21 on: October 03, 2013, 03:02:46 AM »
So am I the only one who has replied that has successfully, pre-dated those qualifications?  I'm feeling smug right now. 8)

Anyway, most of those years were spent doing useless things that didn't help me move forward.  In fact, most of the things my teachers taught me were how NOT to play the piano.  But it took many years to figure that out.  It's hard to not follow the teachers' instruction, but once I realized how poor the techniques they were teaching were, and that there were better options, my technique just flew off of the shelves.

IME, most teachers are dinosaurs teaching outdated techniques which can cause injury.  E.g. one of my teachers was a well-known concert pianist and clearly the best of all the piano faculty, but his students had the most number of injuries.  The worst pianist faculty at the school was also the best teacher and rarely did her students get injuries.  I once pissed off this teacher because I suggested a technique to one of her students that made playing a piece easier.  Apparently, she stopped the lesson and asked if I had told her to do that.  Yes, I'm that good; my unique technique is legendary. ;D  Her student even told me that it was a lot easier to do it the way I suggested, but during a recital, she played it her teacher's way because her teacher was in the audience and she didn't want her to get mad at her.

Anyway, I don't do grades and have never cared for them, but I assume the stuff I can play far exceed those numbers.

Offline j_menz

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #22 on: October 03, 2013, 03:19:52 AM »
I'm feeling smug right now. 8)

I'd have though that was more a general state than a "right now" experience.
"What the world needs is more geniuses with humility. There are so few of us left" -- Oscar Levant

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #23 on: October 03, 2013, 03:25:12 AM »
I figure it's best not to be humble online.  There's little that words do to convey humbleness, and it's a waste of space to jolly rancher around it.  Just say what you mean.

Offline nickadams

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #24 on: October 03, 2013, 03:59:40 AM »
Tell me, what percentage of 8 year olds who start piano succeed?  My guess is about 1%.  I think it's quite possible a higher percentage of adults do.  But it's not a real large percentage.  It might be 5%.

I know I said I wanted to close this thread, but I feel the need to justify myself on this point.

Kids starting piano have tons and tons of people to look at who started in their situation (as child beginners) and ended up attaining a decent level of proficiency.

But as an adult learner, I don't know anybody in real life who started in my position (adult beginner), and attained proficiency, so why is it unreasonable for me to search for such role models online?

If you disagree with my definition of proficiency, or my goals, or that I should restrict the discussion to just people who started at age 18+, then please just PM me or keep the posts in this thread rather than the new survey thread.


All I'm trying to do is take a survey with very specific criteria. I'm not asking anybody to criticize the criteria, but if they want to, then PM me or keep it in this thread.

Online outin

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #25 on: October 03, 2013, 04:00:26 AM »
I just check.  The Pianist's Guide to Standard Teaching and Performance Literature by Jane Magrath.  According to her, the pieces I have recently been working on are at lever 6 and 7.  I have reached this in just under four years of playing.

Can't answer the original question because I do not fit the criteria since I had an encounter with the piano some 30 years ago.

But just to inform you: The grades in Jane Magrath's book (a great book btw) are not equivalent with ABRSM and other major exam systems. They go from 1-10 and the pieces at level ten are around level 7 in ABRSM. Level 6 in her book is around level 4 in ABRSM.

But it really should be about playing the music well regardless of the grades.

Offline j_menz

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #26 on: October 03, 2013, 04:34:28 AM »
But as an adult learner, I don't know anybody in real life who started in my position (adult beginner), and attained proficiency, so why is it unreasonable for me to search for such role models online?

Misses you criteria by a year, but you may nevertheless find him "inspiring" - Albert Frantz

I would have thought that there should be quite a reasonable number of adult beginners who get to grade 6-7 level, though the time it takes them may be longer. Not because of any physical limits, but simply because most would have more time constraints.
"What the world needs is more geniuses with humility. There are so few of us left" -- Oscar Levant

Online outin

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #27 on: October 03, 2013, 04:50:03 AM »
I would have thought that there should be quite a reasonable number of adult beginners who get to grade 6-7 level, though the time it takes them may be longer. Not because of any physical limits, but simply because most would have more time constraints.

Exactly! And there are also other obstacles, like the teacher only teaching during the school year and only having access to one 45 min lesson a week  >:(

It's a bit different to be able to play a few 6-7 level pieces than to actually generally be competent to play on that level. Some things may come to you easily and others need much more time. Taking the time in the beginning to get a good foundation should be a good thing, instead of counting the years...

Offline nickadams

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #28 on: October 03, 2013, 05:01:24 AM »

I would have thought that there should be quite a reasonable number of adult beginners who get to grade 6-7 level

yes well that's what I'm trying to find out... Hopefully the survey thread will fill up with responses as time goes on. I posted one on pianoworld also so we'll see

Offline j_menz

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #29 on: October 03, 2013, 05:07:45 AM »
yes well that's what I'm trying to find out... Hopefully the survey thread will fill up with responses as time goes on. I posted one on pianoworld also so we'll see

As a caution, I'd suggest people in the category you seek are probably significantly underrepresented on online forums.
"What the world needs is more geniuses with humility. There are so few of us left" -- Oscar Levant

Offline brogers70

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #30 on: October 03, 2013, 11:41:19 AM »
Nick,

I started when I was 40; I'm 55 now. I worked very hard, practicing 2-4 hours per day consistently. I also had a decent musical background from playing classical guitar and singing Renaissance and Baroque music in small groups; I already had basic music theory under control. I had a couple of good teachers, and a few useless ones. At this point, I've got an excellent teacher, a retired, mid-tier concert pianist and music professor who likes teaching adults and is good at teaching technique. I did a decent job playing the Haydn Sonata Hob 32 in B minor at a recital recently. The stuff I've played competently (meaning you wouldn't necessarily pay to hear it, but you wouldn't run out of the room screaming either) includes most of the Schubert Impromptus, the Brahms Intermezzi in Opus 117 and 118, Beethoven Sonata Opus 14 #1 in E major, Opus 10 #1 in C minor and the Pastorale Sonata (just starting it), Bach P&F from WTC Book 1 in C minor, D minor, D major, A flat major, and Gmajor, French Suites in E flat and C minor, the First Partita, a few Mozart sonatas including the wonderful A minor sonata, lots of Haydn sonatas, an easy Chopin Nocturne in G minor, Janacek's "On an Overgrown Path."

You have to work harder than someone who started young and you have to find a teacher who will teach technique and who has experience teaching adults. Other than than there's absolutely no reason not to go for it.

Bill

Offline lorcar

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #31 on: October 03, 2013, 01:13:13 PM »
Nick,

I started when I was 40; I'm 55 now. I worked very hard, practicing 2-4 hours per day consistently. I .....most of the Schubert Impromptus, the Brahms Intermezzi in Opus 117 and 118, Beethoven Sonata Opus 14 #1 in E major, Opus 10 #1 in C minor and the Pastorale Sonata (just starting it), Bach P&F from WTC Book 1 in C minor, D minor, D major, A flat major, and Gmajor, French Suites in E flat and C minor, the First Partita, a few Mozart sonatas including the wonderful A minor sonata, lots of Haydn sonatas, an easy Chopin Nocturne in G minor, Janacek's "On an Overgrown Path."

You have to work harder than someone who started young a
Bill

Bill

may I ask what was the most daunting task? the most difficult thing? I mean: hands independence, hand movements, memorizing, etc etc etc.
i am 38yo, started last year after 25+ interruption (and my level was not high, but at least I didnt struggle to read again), currently studying early in the morning, lunch break (30 minuts) and at night. Working on this
and trying to rythm it right...at this age, and with the first baby on the way, I do wonder often which results I could really hope to reach in few years, or in 10 years. And wonder if I should quit or not. It's such a long journey.
Obviously any tip you feel to share is highly appreciated
thanks in advance

Offline lorcar

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #32 on: October 03, 2013, 01:14:19 PM »
My repertoire includes the following level 7 pieces
Op 64 no 2 Waltz in C#m
Nocturne in C#m op 20 Post
Prokofiev's Montagues and Capulets
Clair De Lune 
I am 33 and have been playing for just over 1 year. 

seriously, i feel like I shouldnt believe it. How possible in a year? did you start from scratch?

Offline brogers70

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #33 on: October 03, 2013, 02:01:16 PM »
Bill

may I ask what was the most daunting task? the most difficult thing? I mean: hands independence, hand movements, memorizing, etc etc etc.

Lorcar,

At the very beginning I found coordinating hands most difficult, even simple things like playing the same scale in both hands in similar motion. Just coordinating which hand had a thumb under, which used finger 3 or 4 at which point in the scale took forever. At first the idea of coordinating a simple Alberti bass in the LH with a melody in the RH was very daunting. I just stuck with it and went slowly. I did a lot of Hanon at the beginning, before I had a teacher. I don't know if it helped or not. I went many years working very hard on progressively more difficult music, starting with Clementi Sonatinas and working up to Bach 2 part inventions and relatively simple Haydn sonatas, and then on to the pieces I listed in my first post. Now the biggest technical challenge is just producing a beautiful sound.

My biggest mistake was not knowing what to look for in a teacher and going for long stretches without one. I developed bad habits, mostly tension in the wrists and forearms, failure to use the upper arm muscles and arm weight, poor posture. So now 15 years into it and already able to play some decently interesting pieces, I'm having to really rebuild a proper technique from the ground up with a good teacher. So my advice would be find a teacher with a good reputation who will take your desire to build a good technique seriously and who knows how to work with adults.

Offline lorcar

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #34 on: October 03, 2013, 02:14:35 PM »
thanks a lot Bruce.

at your age, how did you find more than 1 hour a day?

Offline brogers70

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #35 on: October 03, 2013, 02:35:50 PM »
thanks a lot Bruce.
at your age, how did you find more than 1 hour a day?

It's Bill, not Bruce, assuming you're asking me (brogers70). I got a digital piano with headphones and practiced after the kids were asleep. Once I got to a certain point in my career, I no longer had to work like a mad man, so I could easily carve out a couple of hours on weeknight evenings and up to 4 hours on the weekends. Now the kids are in college, I've switched to an acoustic grand piano, and my wife is tolerant of the long practice hours.

Offline brogers70

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #36 on: October 03, 2013, 02:38:31 PM »
Lorcar, another thing I forgot to say. You probably would not need as many hours early in the process if you had a good teacher right from the start. I'm sure lots of my practice early on was very inefficient, just doing the same wrong thing again and again until it was firmly ingrained. You may not need to find as much time as I did if you have good guidance from the start.

Offline lorcar

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #37 on: October 03, 2013, 03:19:03 PM »
thanks Bill, sorry for mistaking your name

thanks a lot

Offline lorcar

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #38 on: October 03, 2013, 03:36:37 PM »
Lorcar, another thing I forgot to say. You probably would not need as many hours early in the process if you had a good teacher right from the start. I'm sure lots of my practice early on was very inefficient, just doing the same wrong thing again and again until it was firmly ingrained. You may not need to find as much time as I did if you have good guidance from the start.


any method you'd recommend? anything you want to share that you feel has helped you to improve?

Offline muntjack

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #39 on: October 04, 2013, 02:57:57 AM »
seriously, i feel like I shouldnt believe it. How possible in a year? did you start from scratch?


I played the violin growing up and played the guitar for the last 15 years, so I had somewhat of a musical background, though I never had any real lessons for either instrument.  I also have been lucky enough to be able to devote a lot of time to the piano.  30 hours a week of mindful practice can go a long way.  The old posts here by Bernhard helped me a great deal in learning how to practice. 

Offline stefo78

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Re: Adult Learner Success Stories?
«Reply #40 on: October 05, 2013, 12:51:24 PM »
Hello, I think there's a lot of answers and encouraging topics in the Chuan C Chang book "Fondamentals of Piano Practice" you'll easily find on the net. It's been my reference for some months and that boosted my practice since then.