Oi. This was a doozy. So many things went wrong that I was reluctant to edit it, but it turned out way better than I anticipated. It was also way LONGER than anticipated, haha! I really do go into these practice sessions blind, so I had no idea what to expect... I just wasn't expecting it to be this long!
I was also messing with the manual functions of my camera to get it to look better than it has in previous weeks. I like how it looks! But of course it had to die... Now that I think of it, I think a big reason why it died sooner than I expected was because I was testing the camera settings so much before I started filming (a good half hour or so). Whoops.
The practice session itself was a workout, but it was super fun. It felt great afterwards, especially because I knew that I've finally finished an entire piece for you guys!! Well, not finished, but at least you guys have seen me practice all three movements now. :D
For those who want to skip around, here are the time markers:
00:43 - Rhythm in the main theme
02:34 - Harmonics (warm-up)
03:38 - Tuning
09:30 - Sight reading the movement
19:34 - Working backwards, one section at a time
28:00 - Explaining "Soft Memorization" (I made that term up)
32:23 - Continuing with practicing
1:04:38 - Outro
Kuhlau's 3 Grand Solos
GUYS. I am constantly humbled by my line of work, and I'm so glad for it. I can't believe I took reading music for granted. At this point, it really is like reading English to me--I don't really think about it or sound words out. I just read whole sentences at a time, without a second thought about what all the individual letters are.
That's why it was so mystifying to me as to why some of my students can play anything (and correctly, if they're playing with a recording) but struggle to read music quickly. I couldn't understand how they can play but not read.
But you know what guys? It's totally possible. In fact, I do it myself, but with Chinese.
You see, I can hold a pretty basic conversation in Cantonese (usually mixed in with a bit of English), but I cannot for the life of me read Chinese, except for simple numbers, a few easy words, and my name. That's not any different from the level of reading some of my students have with written musical notation.
So what's the point of being able to read music if you can play it without reading? Communication. In the same way that I can't WhatsApp my extended family members in Chinese because I don't know how to write in Chinese, my students and I will have communication problems when I try to tell them to play certain notes, measures, or phrases. I'll say, "Start on the pickup to m. 28, on that high B there," but if you don't know what a pickup is or what a B looks like, you'll just end up staring at me like I'm speaking a different language. Because I am! Written musical notation is a language. It's a way for musicians to communicate music to each other in a standard way that can be understood by everyone.
So there we have it. I was so pumped when I made this discovery, and I just HAD to share with you guys. I hope it helps someone out there, be they a student or teacher.
Happy music making!
I took inspiration from last week's video and just considered what I was thinking about and teaching a lot of this week. It's flute posture!
Sometimes I wonder if the themes I'm noticing in my teaching has more to do with me than my students... Hm... They do say that when someone teaches, that person retains way more of what they teach than the students who are learning from the lesson! Weird, right? I feel like that's exactly what's happening here.
I included the introduction bit where I explain a little of how I feel as a teacher teaching posture and why I avoided teaching it for a while because I wanted to be real with you guys. I'm not the perfect teacher, and I want to put it out there that I'm really still in this to keep learning. I want you guys to learn with me. :)
Happy practicing! <3
You know, talking about something that I've found myself already talking about over and over in my daily life might seem to be the most obvious thing to make a video about, but apparently, it hasn't been that obvious to me. XD I think I might start making these videos more like a collection of my thoughts over recent weeks... like a diary of sorts. That seems to come off the most genuinely, and it seems to spark more interesting and unique topics.
It would definitely be less of a thing to worry about, since, to be really honest, I do find myself stressing quite a bit over new and interesting topics to talk about. Maybe it doesn't have to be new. Maybe it doesn't even have to be interesting. It just has to be something I've been mulling over recently. And I can share my current thoughts about it with you guys, with the understanding that as I gain more experience, those thoughts and opinions will change. And that's great! It's far more sustainable than aimlessly trying to come up with new topics every week. And you guys get a deeper peek into my thoughts and how my thoughts progress.
I'd love for you guys to grow with me. That's the point of these videos. I'm not showing you how things are done--I'm just showing you what's worked for me and gathering my thoughts about why they worked, and hopefully you'll glean something that works for you too. I don't expect people to follow my advice to the letter, but my hope is that it would inspire you to make the right choice FOR YOU. :)
Random internet person believes in you. You got this.
I laboured for a few hours the night before on some notes for a video I was planning on making... and then I promptly didn't make that video at all. Oh well!
Sometimes I feel like I have these half-fleshed-out thoughts that I can't quite articulate well yet, and I really felt that hard this week. I'd rather not make rambling videos when I don't exactly know what point I'm going to make, so why not just do a "Practice with Me" instead?
Hope you guys enjoy this one--I had a lot more fun than I expected (again)! ;)