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Jammin' With You! - JWY! Music Blog

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Can a music student practice too much?

 

Practice makes perfect.

Practice if you were the worst and perform if you were the best! 

Practice, Practice, Practice!!!! 

As SuperJams aproach we are all telling our students to practice their pieces. Some students are focusing all of their practice energy on making their performance piece absoulutly perfect. 

But can you be practicing too much!? Could too much practice actually damage your playing?

If a student already has compleated his/her performance piece and everything is perfect, he/she should still practice, but maybe not everyday. When playing the piece there still needs to be an element of "freshness" in the student's sound, touch and feel of the song.

So as your student practices keep these few tips in mind: 

 1. Before playing the whole piece, play the trouble spots

 2. If the piece you are playing is perfect and you are ready to play at the recital, only practice every other day or take off few days of playing it. This helps to keep it fresh. 

 3. Sometimes instead of playing at your instrument, visualize the music or try to hum or sing the song in your head. 

 4. Try playing the piece in front of family and friends just like you would at the recital. 


Use these few tips to help your student stay fresh and excited about their recital piece. Remember to keep on encouraging him/her and helping him/her feel excited and ready to play on the big day.


Photo by:Orangeacid

Suceed at music recitals! Conquer Nerves!

 

photo by: Maxwell GS

Photo: Maxwell GS

As spring concerts, recitals and shows start filling our calendars your child may start getting a case of the dreaded nerves. When I first started playing at recitals, I would be so nervous everything I learned from my piano lessons went out the window. I would seem to forget everything, including how to sit at the piano to how to play.But when I learned some easy ways to get rid of my nerves I started playing my best.

Here are 5 ways to help your child calm down and rock out at their performance! 

Accept and redirect: 

When we are nervous it normally shows that we care about what we are about to do. We don't want to mess up because we have worked hard and are ready to show the world our talent! Instead of thinking of nerves in a negative light, look at them in a positive light. 

Remember:

*nerves mean you care 

*nerves give you a little adrenaline that keeps you alert 

*nerves are natural and you can get through them

Stretch:

When a person is nervous they tend to clench their jaw, wring their hands or move their legs quickly. Anxiety causes tension.  Do a few simple stretches to relax and get the blood flowing.

*Shrug your shoulders toward your ears and rolling your head from side to side

*Bring one arm across your body and pull and do the same with the other side.

*Rotate your ankles and stretch your legs

* Shake your hands like you have just washed them and their isn't a towel around to dry them.

Silently Sing or Play: 

Mentally review what piece you are playing or singing. You can even pretend you have the instrument in your hand and practice the motions. Doing this will allow your mind to relax and take focus to the task at hand. 

Don't Go Bananas!:

Whenever you feel like you are going to get upset start to focus on your breathing and think happy thoughts. Say phrases to yourself like: 

* It's OK to be upset, but I am in control 

* I am great at what I do!

* I am going to conquer this 

You can also think about a time where you did really well at something or a time when you where very relaxed. Close your eyes, take a breath and imagine you are there. 

*Also, speaking of bananas, eat a banana, it helps lower anxiety.

SMILE:

Show off those teeth. Smiling helps relieve tension in our jaw and overall makes us feel happier. When we smile we are shrugging off the nerves and showing a confident exterior which will slowly come to the interior. 

Remember "When your smiling, the whole world smiles with you." 

So before your child starts to worry about how they will sound at their recital remind them that they are great, smile at them, rub their shoulders and hand them a banana! They are going to be wonderful this recital season and I am sure many people await to hear their talent!

 Photo:Kaex0r

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