As a student, I remember attending a lecture by Jeanne Baxtresser regarding time management. She spoke of how each of her students make lists at the start of each academic year to identify summer festivals, competitions, and any major performances (like degree recitals, concerto appearances, etc.). Together they make lists of repertoire in order to plan out the year. My own students know this impacted me greatly, as I begin hounding to start working on their list. Preparing for competitions can assist us in wisely multi-tasking repertoire preparation (and giving us more opportunities to perform prepared material), help us strengthen our mental and emotional "muscles" during challenging times, and generally just provide motivation through these determined goals. So - have you started your list yet?
Here are a few opportunities to keep in mind:
There are many other competitions through flute organizations around the country, so be sure to do a search!
It's already mid-July...do you know where your summer has gone?
Actually, it's been a great summer, full of lots of inspiration, rain, quality time with loved ones and friends, time for reflection, and thoughts for the future. I'm getting ready to teach out of state, followed by the annual whirlwind of NFA Convention/blast off to the semester, so here are a few practice blogs and sites to help get revved up for the Fall semester:
Nicholas Walker, bassist:
Practice Monster. This is a great blog by a former UMiami classmate, saxophonist David Pope. A must-read for all of us who wrestle the balance and discipline that skill requires.
The Musician's Way by Gerald Klickstein. This is an amazing resource of much fantastic information, ranging from practicing to career development to wellness. Spend some time checking out this website, including the terrific downloads.
The Bulletproof Musician by Noa Kageyama. This is another rich website, full of inspiration and practicing ideas. With a searchable blog and an online course, you can find great information here.
Study Hacks Blog decoding patterns of Success, by Cal Newport: "exploring how people build interesting and meaningful lives." Here are some different viewpoints to push us further (below) but there are many other entries you may find interesting:
The Courage Crutch
Flow is the opiate of the mediocre
Is Talent Underrated?
The Practicing Musician - scroll down for lots of entries.
A few lists (with links and other insights):
Music in Practice by Sue Hunt. Here's a post on Two Tips to Cure Mindless Fast Practice, but there are many other entries, including a category on how to practice.
10 Easy Ways to Optimize Your Practicing
5 Strategies for Effective Practice by Nick Baskin, offers ideas on how to avoid getting overwhelmed by the piles of new music awaiting your ensemble and lesson activities.
14 Sites That Help You Practice
Essential Music Practice has helpful ideas, but check out the Top 5 Habits for Effective Practice, located on the bottom of the page. Get it right the first time so you're not practicing being overloaded!
Happy practicing, everyone!