If you think the score is too difficult, put it aside for later. It’s a mistake to spend 6 months trying to play 16 or 32 measures (even if it’s a song you like most of all). If the level is too high, then this is not the time but it will be later. Return to simpler things or try to find this partition in “simplified” mode. There are many works that have been deliberately simplified to just make you happy without having great frustrations.
If you spend too much time playing something difficult, it will discourage you and annoy you. You will lose confidence, which in itself is never good! Better to go “crescendo ” in the difficulties than to tackle stronger than oneself. Keep in mind that you can only progress (if of course your work is good) and that what was impossible to play at a given moment is less so later. And that’s how we realize its progress. What was impossible 6 months ago is less so now.
Again, a teacher will help you to target the works that will make you progress, to work difficulties of your levels (I think for example triplets, notions of rhythms, independence of hands …). Your teacher will adapt the choices according to your tastes but also your level. Then, if you have enough perspective on all of this, you can take that role. But do not forget one thing: do not stalemate, do not try to avoid difficulties for which you have trouble. Face them with easy examples; do not leave anything out because you will need it one day or the other :).
Deciphering: an exercise that can pay off
We have already talked about it but it is an exercise that is truly recommended. An article is devoted to it so I will not go back to the content here. Deciphering is certainly the best exercise to progress.
Do not forget the technical work and the theory
As part of a regular work, your work session must be balanced between several activities: technical work, deciphering, maintaining one or more pieces previously acquired (ie your “directory”) and the study of one or more partitions. The technique should not be forgotten. At the piano, there are many exercises available (Hanon, Czerny, Dandelot and others). Certainly these exercises are not the most exciting but essential to keep or acquire technicality and / or speed.
Music theory and music theory are of course on the program. I am not particularly keen to separate the theory of practice. On the other hand, doing one or two music theory exercises will not take you a lot of time and will help you. I think for example of reading notes, in the sense of rhythm, intervals, major scales, minor scale…. There is also on Musiclic many solfeggio exercises to download and you can work your musical theory in a waiting room, on the train…
Work well on his score
Whether in deciphering or studying a piece, do not hesitate to work the whole score: this will give you a complete idea of the piece and identify the main difficulties.
About these difficulties (rhythmic among others), I advise you to work “apart”, separately and then reintegrate them into the work. If the difficulty is important, try to simplify it a little or as much as possible: for example, you can simplify the notes to play and concentrate on the technical difficulty.
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When you work a piece, especially the mistake not to do is to systematically start from the beginning that you will necessarily know perfectly at a given moment, quite quickly even. To do well, you have to be able to start a score from a measure chosen at random. Without going that far, when you know a set of measures pretty well, focus on the continuation and continue to maintain the parts you know. Of course, if you are working on one score per song, do not forget to work on the sequence of these two songs.
Do not hesitate to film yourself (see below): you will observe the quality of your game, the movement of your hands, the anticipation or not of the notes, the relaxation or not of your game. You will also submit a small review staff where you have to give the best of yourself when you register. In any case, filming you will learn about you and your game much more than you imagine.
It may be interesting sometimes to resume a partition or deciphering worked several months before. So it will be interesting to see if you overcome the difficulties more quickly, which would mean that your work has paid off.
Another interesting idea is to take a score close to the one you have (already) worked (in terms of working time and difficulties encountered) and see if the progress made in the past help you overcome the difficulties present in this new job.
Feel free to work all the difficulties and not only those that seem less difficult, or at least within your reach. During a deciphering exercise, for example, take a collection for easy piano or beginner and take a page at random. If you start choosing your scores, it is likely that you make the choice that suits you the most :).
Smile and shoot!
With today’s tools and devices (like mobile phones or tablets), it’s easy to film yourself. Do not hesitate to film yourself, there is nothing like to observe you objectively. Be your own spectator because when you play, it is sometimes difficult to be critical of your own, even to hear correctly what you play. A video will allow you to take a step back and eventually, you can show it to your teacher who will correct you if necessary.
Make yourself heard
It is very important to play in front of an audience, whoever it is (friends, neighbors, family …), it is still necessary that this public is attentive and respectful :). Everything depends on the instrument and some lend themselves more to a group game than to solos.
For example, if your child is learning piano or guitar, do not leave the TV on, check your text messages, or do the dishes at the same time. Even if you are not a music lover, take the time to listen to it. It should not necessarily be done for hours, but it is worth a good and short listening attentive attention and a little discouraging for the one who plays.