I so love those moments in a lesson when the student experiences (vs just hearing about it) something totally new and unexpected.
The other day I was working with a student who is very conscientious and a bit shy. She wasn’t putting all of her energy into her playing and…she didn’t realize it.
I had her stand up and move away from her instrument. (This was a bit uncomfortable for her).
Next, I asked her to take a deep breath and as she exhaled to let her “self” go all the way down into her feet, and to help her with that I asked her to wriggle her toes.
We did two more breaths like this and each time I asked her to focus on her legs and let them sink into the floor.
All of a sudden her face totally changed and she actually looked a little horrified. She told me that she really felt that and didn’t expect to! It was a totally new experience for her; and more, she got it.
When she returned to playing, her sound was much fuller, freer, and more expressive. The change was very noticeable, even to her. More importantly, she enjoyed her playing more!
What made the big difference? I think that we get caught in our thoughts and feelings and tend to hold back and maybe even keep ourselves “in our heads” instead of all the way in our bodies.
Being in the “here and now” is a popular phrase right now, but it is actually very true all of the time and especially in playing the piano.
One of the best ways to make sure that you are fully physically present in your practicing and playing is to stop and take a few deep breaths before you even sit down at your piano.
Our energy goes where our thoughts go!
It’s a bit ironic to say that we need to be fully physically engaged with something that is such an “inner” language. Music trains us to be able to do both at the same time and to be fully engaged with both; one of the many benefits of playing the piano!
When you are fully in your body, your sound will reflect that. It will be strong, connected, expressive and rich.
If you aren’t hearing this in your playing, try settling in more before you start; and even try this in other areas of your life because the benefits will be the same – all good!
Stay Tuned to pianolessonsontheweb.com to learn much more and achieve your dream of playing the piano!
Most blogs written by