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Topic: Technique "osmosis"  (Read 2343 times)

Offline Rockitman

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Technique "osmosis"
on: January 26, 2005, 06:43:16 PM
This is funny.  It keeps happening.  I don't know how but it's there.
I will attend a recital of a concert pianist.  I usually get a seat where I can view his hands at work.  I will watch him/her, mesmorized by his performance, and I swear to the almighty, when I get home and practice, I feel like my technique just jumped up a level.   It is such a great feeling.  I never miss a local concert anymore, I don't care who or what they are playing.   
I just saw Arnaldo Cohen last week, and he started off with Chopin's 24 Preludes.
I am currently working on #3 in Gmajor,  and after watching him play it, I went home and immediately experienced a huge jump in my playing ability of this piece.
I don't know what it was, his economy of motion, his effortlessness, or what, but it transferred to me.  Of course, it's nowhere near performance ready, but it sounds so much nicer and plays so much easier. 

Offline MTS_JSOT

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #1 on: January 26, 2005, 07:04:14 PM
That is quiet strange, maybe you've got a photographic memory?

Offline jazzyprof

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #2 on: January 26, 2005, 07:24:37 PM
Actually it's not that strange at all.  It's like attending a master class.  You watch the master's movements and then when you come home, consciously or unconsciously you begin to imitate them.
"Playing the piano is my greatest joy, next to my wife; it is my most absorbing interest, next to my work." ...Charles Cooke

Offline jason2711

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #3 on: January 26, 2005, 09:48:44 PM
this often happens... possibly after seeing the piece played live you are more inspired about it and so are happier to play it.... therefore play it better.  Also seeing how its really done gives an insight and can improve your performance nicely ;D

Offline johnnypiano

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #4 on: January 26, 2005, 11:09:12 PM
Purely psychological.  you enjoyed the performance, heard and saw the pianist playing beautifully and effortlessly.  It relaxed you and made you feel you could also improve.  Let's all keep listening, and watching, performances and get inspired!!! 

I experience something which at first seems strange.  When I practise with just one hand I find that the other hand has improved.  However, the hands stem from the same brain so perhaps this is not so extraordinary.  It's very uplifting though and i feel that I have got somethig for nothing.  Does anyone else find this happens? 

Offline Motrax

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #5 on: January 27, 2005, 02:38:41 AM
I spent a while watching videos of Richter play, and I improved tremendously as a result.  I always played with a great deal of tension before seeing Richter, so probably I would not improve quite so much if I were to watch great pianists now. I always feel more relaxed and confident after watching pianists, though - the same applies to when I read about them, listen to them (not videos - just CDs), etc.
"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 richard w

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #6 on: January 27, 2005, 01:01:33 PM
This is very interesting. But when you think about it logically it would seem to make sense. I don't think many of us would be in any doubt that listening to music is very important. By learning what music should sound like we then know what we should be recreating. So in turn, if we also see what the movements look like we then know what they should look like when we play too.

I think playing the piano is really just choreography of the fingers, arms and body. So, consider that no one would teach dance (also basically just movement of the body) just by issuing a series of black blobs to the student. It occurs to me, and shamefully only just as I type now, that learning/teaching the piano should involve an awful lot more 'showing' than it often does, both listening and seeing.



Richard.

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #7 on: January 27, 2005, 01:25:36 PM
I think if you listen or watch masters of the keyboard play you can only benefit from it. It is evidence of their great ability if just by watching them you can learn something. A lesser pianist wouldn't have that effect on you, but i like to think that everyone has something to share at the keyboard. But yeah, personally i have learnt a great deal more just watching great musicians play than i have studying music myself.
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Offline dorfmouse

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #8 on: January 27, 2005, 11:43:12 PM
I experienced the same phenomenon when I used to play a lot of tennis. After watching Wimbledon or similar my game would be much more relaxed, the movements ampler, better follow through etc. I don't think it was just imagination. And isn't visualisation a well-known technique in preparing for improving sports performance so surely watching the movements and hearing the sound of a good performer can only feed in positively to that visualising process.
Quote
It occurs to me, and shamefully only just as I type now, that learning/teaching the piano should involve an awful lot more 'showing' than it often does, both listening and seeing.
I agree. I think many teachers talk and intellectualise too much. My present teacher is a much more active demonstrator than any of my previous teachers. And partly because I am not fluent yet in his language I have to pay attention to his movements and find myself "catching" them in the lesson. I think it would also be a valuable, (if horrendous!) experience to be videoed while playing, just one experience of that in a tennis lesson had a huge impact.
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Tread softly because you tread on my dreams."
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Offline vladhorwz

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #9 on: June 28, 2005, 09:52:08 PM
What you are probably describing is the effect of "mirror neurons", special neurons that show activity both when a subject performs an action and when it observes the same action performed by itself or another.  In effect, you get brain and ever so slight muscle activity exactly mimicking what a virtuoso would be doing on stage, somply by observing.  I think as time goes on more research will be done on this and it will become a larger part of perfromance/learning.

Offline Barbosa-piano

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #10 on: June 28, 2005, 09:57:38 PM
 The exact same thing happened to me... It is weird, because, I finished watching Andras Schiff play 24 Preludes by Chopin, and I could not only play with higher techinique level, confidence and good sight reading, but I could also compose, thoughts which I had never had before, and that I can no longer remember since that day. The same happened after a recital I went, where they played Grieg's Concerto in A minor, In the two pianos version. As said above, it seems purely psychological.



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Offline Kohai

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #11 on: July 08, 2005, 01:03:05 AM
This has happened quite a bit for me and has been, in fact, one of my main learning points in playing.  I have had many an opportunity to watch pianists up close and have often found myself mesmerized about their actions.  One of my early teachers once told me to watch closely everything the great pianists did and learn from that, and so I have.  Once I realize a way that is clearly right for me, there is no turning back.  So if upon watching another pianist move around the keyboard I happen to glimpse something of importance to my development, I will not forget it and it assimilates itself into my practice.

Kohai
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Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #12 on: July 08, 2005, 02:39:56 AM
What you are probably describing is the effect of "mirror neurons", special neurons that show activity both when a subject performs an action and when it observes the same action performed by itself or another.  In effect, you get brain and ever so slight muscle activity exactly mimicking what a virtuoso would be doing on stage, somply by observing.  I think as time goes on more research will be done on this and it will become a larger part of perfromance/learning.

This would be my explaination as well, though I prefer to call it the "monkey see, monkey do" neurons.

Offline dbrainiak914

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Re: Technique "osmosis"
Reply #13 on: July 08, 2005, 01:26:31 PM
Yesterday I got a Horowitz DVD from the Library.  Watched it twice, amazed how little he moves his fingers, hands, body in general.  Later that night when I sat down at the piano, so many things that seemed difficult allofasudden were simple!  I also pulled out pieces I was thinking of learning, (Waldesrauschen, Suggestion Diabolique, Mosz 72/11) and sightread them straight through just fine, albeit a bit under tempo.  When I woke up today I thought, "was I really playing like that last night?"  Stunning.

I'm definitely getting some more DVD's.   ;D
"The artist will spend months on a Chopin valse.  The student feels injured if he cannot play it in a day." - Vladimir de Pachmann
 

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