So I may be a professional now, but that doesn't mean things still don't go wrong! I thought I'd share these on-stage mishaps with you guys because, personally, I LOVED hearing these kinds of stories from my own teachers!
I'm not sure why I remember this story so clearly, but I distinctly remember telling my master's teacher, Linda Lukas, about how I'd gotten my scarf caught on my flute, and I nearly couldn't get it untangled before I had to play during an orchestra rehearsal. I felt a little embarrassed telling her, but I also felt like she'd probably enjoy the story. I was so surprised when she told me that the exact same thing happened to her too!!! And this was during a routine San Francisco Symphony rehearsal at the Davie Symphony Hall.
To this day, I can't fully describe how hearing that story made me feel. It was a huge mixture of feeling like maybe professionals aren't as prim and perfect as I had thought... feeling like maybe even a peasant like me could make it as professional... feeling like my teacher was suddenly even more relatable and human... feeling like making silly mistakes here and there wasn't actually that big of a deal... feeling like maybe even professionals don't always feel like professionals?
In the end, I think I had a much better understanding of what "professional musicians" are really like. It's not unlike how people always say that they never feel like they've ever "grown up". When you're young, you always think the grown-ups have it all figured out, and so will you when you grow up. But then you grow up and find out that in reality, all "grown-ups" are just figuring out life as they go too, and no one really ever truly feels like they know what they're doing.
Professional musicians are the same. We still feel like we're still figuring out this music world, this music industry. We still make mistakes, we still learn from mistakes, and we still continue to grow. :)