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#1280063 - 10/03/09 03:56 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Joe H.]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Originally Posted By: Joe H.
Also, if this post isn't about eliminating mistakes, what is it about?
It's about how they happen, but as you ask - a mistake can't be undone, unlearned, or changed. You can only work around it. And thanks, but no thanks, for the web etiquette advice.
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#1280068 - 10/03/09 04:05 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: keyboardklutz]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
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Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Need I say any more (about this rude, pseudo-intellectual charlatan)?


Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 04:07 PM)
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#1280075 - 10/03/09 04:21 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Nyiregyhazi]
eweiss Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi
Need I say any more (about this rude, pseudo-intellectual charlatan)?

Please don't.
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#1280076 - 10/03/09 04:24 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: eweiss]
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
+1
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snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
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#1280077 - 10/03/09 04:27 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Joe H.]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2457
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Joe H.
[
By the way KeyboardKlutz you do come off as pompous and smug in your posts.



This is unconscious flattery to Keyboardklutz' conscious unconscious.

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#1280078 - 10/03/09 04:34 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: keyboardklutz]
jotur Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 5448
Loc: Santa Fe, NM
kbk -

I, too, would like to know if you have found experimental research that this is indeed the way what you call the non-conscious works - that once a mistake is made it keeps trying to correct "a" mistake even after the original mistake has been fixed, and that this is a different phenomenon than others here have described in terms of residual anxiousness or other concern. I've read articles reporting research that shows we often do things before we are consciously aware of intending to do so - moving our fingers to a button in response to a picture on a screen, etc. I also just read an article that talked about the way our brains sometime interpret images in our peripheral vision as something "dangerous" before we can consciously understand what the object actually is. So I think most of us understand that there are things we do with what you call the non-conscious. But I haven't seen anything that indicates it works as you are positing here about mistakes. Is this a hypothesis of yours, interesting as it may be, or is there research that supports it?

Cathy
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#1280083 - 10/03/09 04:46 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: keyboardklutz]
Joe H. Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/13/09
Posts: 11
So mistakes are permanently engraved onto the brain, never to be erased or changed? That just doesn't seem to click with reality. I've imprinted mistakes into my subconscious before, but have always been able to change those mistakes or habits, never to be seen again. And I'm sure plenty of you, including KeyboardKlutz, have experienced this as well. Wouldn't that imply that the mistakes were erased or changed?

As far as how they occur there is an unending source of causes: misunderstanding the piece, mis-reading a note or rhythm, anxiety, nervousness, stage-fright, distraction, etc. I think you can prevent these by being patient and focused while learning and practicing a piece. Never have expectations before you sit down to play. Just accept your ability at that moment, begin within in it, and then build upon it. You will inevitably make a mistake no matter what, because you are human. When you do, correct it then and there before it gets imprinted onto your sub-conscious/limbic brain.

Web etiquette advice politely withdrawn. Voila! (I spelled it right!!!)

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#1280084 - 10/03/09 04:47 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: jotur]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
Cathy, as far as I know there is no research on the piano and the non-conscious. There is plenty on stuff on embodiment and consciousness. All of it involves theories of body image vs body schema or conscious vs non-conscious. The problem is there is no standard terminology as the 'science' of the non-conscious is fairly recent. You can call my OP an hypothesis if you like, but I experience it.
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#1280085 - 10/03/09 04:49 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Joe H.]
keyboardklutz Offline
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Registered: 05/21/07
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Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
Originally Posted By: Joe H.
So mistakes are permanently engraved onto the brain, never to be erased or changed?
Maybe. My guess would be they are quarantined and perhaps, given time, fade away.
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#1280089 - 10/03/09 04:54 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: keyboardklutz]
Joe H. Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/13/09
Posts: 11
Yeah, it certainly isn't a cut and dry process. Old mistakes do occasionally rear their heads, and as they say "old habits die hard". "Quarantined" feels right to me.

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#1280090 - 10/03/09 04:56 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Joe H.]
keyboardklutz Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/07
Posts: 10856
Loc: London, UK (though if it's Aug...
I'd forgot "old habits die hard". Good one!
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snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/


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#1280097 - 10/03/09 05:10 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: keyboardklutz]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
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Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
The problem is there is no standard terminology as the 'science' of the non-conscious is fairly recent. You can call my OP an hypothesis if you like, but I experience it.


Not strictly true. You believe that you experience it, based on a guess. Or are you now proclaiming yourself to have access to what you refer to as the 'non-conscious' mind, permitting you to consciously assess what is going on in there before reporting back to us? Call me a cynic, but I can't help but sniff something of a contradiction. By definition, the non-conscious is that which we are NOT conscious of. But you have transcended such limitations and bridged the divide- allowing you to claim to be fully cogniscent of your unconscious processes?

Regardless, this is hardly enough to warrant a dismissive 'wrong' in response to a poster who holds the more accepted belief that anxiety about certain areas is the issue, or to state your wholly unsupported piece of guesswork as if it were fact (even if this is 'your' thread)...


Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 06:07 PM)
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#1280108 - 10/03/09 05:38 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: keyboardklutz]
jotur Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 5448
Loc: Santa Fe, NM
Oh dear, I had another post disappear into the ether. I'll try to reconstruct it:

Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
Cathy, as far as I know there is no research on the piano and the non-conscious. There is plenty on stuff on embodiment and consciousness. All of it involves theories of body image vs body schema or conscious vs non-conscious. The problem is there is no standard terminology as the 'science' of the non-conscious is fairly recent. You can call my OP an hypothesis if you like, but I experience it.


I don't think the research would have to be piano-brain specific. Your hypothesis is about the way the non-conscious processes mistakes, which seems to me to be a broader issue than just piano.

I don't doubt that you experience the mistakes "moving" to a different place. But without experimental research, to me your description of what is the ultimate cause of that is not more or less valid than other people's descriptions of their experiences and what seems to them to be the cause - and the fix. Again, I think most of the posters here are aware that there are "non-conscious" actions, and they describe their experience with mistakes, and correcting those mistakes, in varying degress of addressing conscious and non-conscious actions. So while I think yours is an interesting hypothesis, I don't see it as being anything more than that smile

JMO of course. YMMV laugh

Cathy
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#1280113 - 10/03/09 05:49 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Joe H.]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2457
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Joe H.
Voila! (I spelled it right!!!)


That's voilĂ .

Voila is a form of the verb voiler, which means to veil.

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#1280117 - 10/03/09 05:53 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: landorrano]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
WHAT AN AWESOME THREAD!!!!!!!!
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#1280128 - 10/03/09 06:10 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Joe H.]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2457
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Joe H.


I think you can prevent these by being patient and focused while learning and practicing a piece. Never have expectations before you sit down to play. Just accept your ability at that moment, begin within in it, and then build upon it.


I disagree. One necessarily has expectations, and one has to have an understanding of the piece before being able to learn it. A piece of music is not an assemblage of notes.

As for mistakes or errors, I think that they flow from an insufficient understanding of the piece, of the instrument; you are trying to speak a language that you don't master sufficiently. It is exactly that you see an assemblage of notes, and not the music. You can't see the forest for the trees.

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#1280132 - 10/03/09 06:17 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Horowitzian]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2457
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Horowitzian
WHAT AN AWESOME THREAD!!!!!!!!


If you take all of times that Horowitzian posts this awesome comment you put him back to the 2000 post club.

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#1280133 - 10/03/09 06:17 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Horowitzian]
bluekeys Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 1337
I know nothing about teaching piano and little about psychology, but I know a great deal about making mistakes. In fact, I'm one of the world's foremost experts at making mistakes.

Thus I'll forgo my usual reluctance to post on the teacher's forum to make two points:

1. To say mistakes are caused by the "non conscious" mind, is roughly equal to saying they're caused by green cylindrical creatures from the planet Tralfamadore. There's no way to prove it one way or the other so it's just idle speculation.

2. To suggest that anything regarding avoiding or preventing mistakes is off-topic makes the whole discussion about as pertenent as a game of tic tac toe.

[edited for brevity]


Edited by bluekeys (10/03/09 07:56 PM)

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#1280134 - 10/03/09 06:17 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: landorrano]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Originally Posted By: landorrano
Originally Posted By: Joe H.


I think you can prevent these by being patient and focused while learning and practicing a piece. Never have expectations before you sit down to play. Just accept your ability at that moment, begin within in it, and then build upon it.


I disagree. One necessarily has expectations, and one has to have an understanding of the piece before being able to learn it. A piece of music is not an assemblage of notes.

As for mistakes or errors, I think that they flow from an insufficient understanding of the piece, of the instrument; you are trying to speak a language that you don't master sufficiently. It is exactly that you see an assemblage of notes, and not the music. You can't see the forest for the trees.


There's a vital difference though. A forest is a bunch of trees placed anywhere. You can afford to look at the whole without caring about any individual component. A performance of a piece requires the notes to be inter-related in a particularly specific layout. In other words, you need a 'forest' where every 'tree' is in exactly the right place. The only way to create such a specifically laid out 'forest', is to concern yourself with the placement of every individual 'tree'. Only having done so, can you begin to step back.

It's all very well to learn something and go on to stop concentrating on fine details so actively. If you never learned something in the first place however, the difference is collossal. It's looking too much at the 'forest' too soon, that leads to people tripping up. Start walking around without lookning up to observe the individual 'trees' (before you've got to know things terribly well) and you might just end up tripping over a 'tree' that wasn't where you expected it to be.


Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 06:29 PM)
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#1280142 - 10/03/09 06:32 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Nyiregyhazi]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2457
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi


A forest is a bunch of trees placed anywhere.


That seems to be the case when you don't know anything about forests.


Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi

The only way to create such a specifically laid out 'forest', is to concern yourself with the placement of every individual 'tree'. Only having done so, can you begin to step back.


I am not in agreement with you, Nyiregyhazi.

If you don't know that the piece before you is, say, a minuet, you will never understand the notes that make it up. The more you know concerning minuets, the better you are able to see or to hear what is going on, and to sit down and play it well.

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#1280161 - 10/03/09 07:08 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: landorrano]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Originally Posted By: landorrano
Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi


A forest is a bunch of trees placed anywhere.


That seems to be the case when you don't know anything about forests.


Really? They have to be within a certain vicinity perhaps, but a forest need to not replicate a specific pre-existing pattern. If you want to learn a piece, you have to put the notes in the right places. It's not about recreating any old forest but a specific forest. That's the product of individual trees. It simply cannot be created without attention to detail.




Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi

The only way to create such a specifically laid out 'forest', is to concern yourself with the placement of every individual 'tree'. Only having done so, can you begin to step back.


Originally Posted By: landorrano
I am not in agreement with you, Nyiregyhazi.


If you don't know that the piece before you is, say, a minuet, you will never understand the notes that make it up. The more you know concerning minuets, the better you are able to see or to hear what is going on, and to sit down and play it well.


Sure. And if you do not know where any of the trees are you will not be able to play it. So both are equally important. Who says that looking at details means you're not going to be able to simultaneously realise what a minuet entails? Sorry, but we're not talking about a mutually exclusive situation. We're talking about a balance between the two elements.

However, it's notable that few pianists improve their accuracy by thinking more about the whole. Sorry, but nobody ever fixed or prevented an unexpected finger slip by consideration of large scale sonata form. Such things are fixed by isolating the details of how far you have to travel between a small series of notes. There is no end to the number of inaccurate, sloppy pianists who went on to improve their accuracy by starting to pay attention more to the individual components, instead of skimming across them with the bigger picture in mind (myself included). Far more inaccuracy is caused by simply not knowing the details, than by excessive concentration on them. When details are learned, you can forget them without losing them. When they have not been learned, you cannot afford to forget them or the whole suffers as greatly as anything from the inevitable technical failings. Any whole is a product of a series of individual details. No details, no whole. The only sensible way to work (for all but geniuses) is to concentrate on details, with their role as part of the whole in mind. It's a constant unity of conception. However, if we're talking about the way to achieve accuracy, the balance always needs to be geared slightly more towards the detail.

When a student persistently misses a particular interval within a piece that is otherwise secure, do you think that it's their grasp of the whole piece that is flawed? Or is it simply that they have never stopped to figure out how to connect the two notes and fingers that are causing the problem? In my own experience, such problems can frequently be fixed exceedingly efficiently by literally just repeating the single interval that is failing to connect. Accuracy comes above all from such details. The only time thinking about the whole prevents slips is when you have repetitive passages that lead off in different directions. However, even in those, it is extremely useful to isolate the exact moment where the music changes course. Detail always matters.


Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 07:28 PM)
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#1280169 - 10/03/09 07:25 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Nyiregyhazi]
landorrano Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2457
Loc: France
Your's is a very pragmatic view, Nyiregyhazy. Your focus is on piano as execution.

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#1280172 - 10/03/09 07:30 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: landorrano]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
Originally Posted By: landorrano
Originally Posted By: Horowitzian
WHAT AN AWESOME THREAD!!!!!!!!


If you take all of times that Horowitzian posts this awesome comment you put him back to the 2000 post club.


grin

What else is one supposed to say after reading such a craptastic thread? The truth hurts, don't it?
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1280173 - 10/03/09 07:30 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: landorrano]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Originally Posted By: landorrano
Your's is a very pragmatic view, Nyiregyhazy. Your focus is on piano as execution.


You are totally mistaken. My focus on preparation is about execution. The very reason this is the case is because I wasted years thinking solely about the general impression I wished to create, without making terribly much improvement. I did scarcely anything that could be counted as 'practise' because I was only concerned with aiming for the bigger picture within that particular run-through (however sloppy it might be in the details), rather than with stopping to isolate the components that would fit together. I still think exactly the same way, in terms of how I intend to play. It's simply that I realised that the best whole is possible, when you have taken the time to prepare yourself first. That involves a wealth of different procedures.

When I'm actually performing, 'execution' could scarcely be further from my mind. Indeed, the better I have prepared the details, the easier it is to have a chance of forgetting about technical procedures and concentrate on the bigger picture (without disaster ensuing).

When somebody simply has little idea as to what they are doing, the more relaxed they are, the better they will perform. However, to follow up by suggesting that it's generally best not to worry about trying to understand what you're actually doing, because that will help you relax more, is going to result in a rapid brick wall. Sustainable progress only comes by understanding what you are doing more, not by aiming to stop thinking about that which you have yet to grasp. Those who feel 'pressured' when worrying about getting details right ultimately need to devote MORE practise to thinking actively (and above all going slowly enough to fulfill what they are capable of), if they ever want to break through the wall and start making real progress. Turning their brains off (or thinking about the whole rather than the details that they have not taken the time to understand or master) is futile. Detail really is everything, in the formative stages.


Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 07:54 PM)
_________________________
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#1280181 - 10/03/09 07:49 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Nyiregyhazi]
jazzyprof Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/04
Posts: 2621
Loc: Ann Arbor, MI
Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi
Detail always matters.

+1
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"Playing the piano is my greatest joy...period."......JP

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#1280206 - 10/03/09 08:34 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: bluekeys]
TimR Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3160
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: bluekeys

1. To say mistakes are caused by the "non conscious" mind, is roughly equal to saying they're caused by green cylindrical creatures from the planet Tralfamadore. There's no way to prove it one way or the other so it's just idle speculation.



Or we haven't yet defined the topic sufficiently operationally to be useful.

To dismiss it entirely I think overlooks a significant movement in performance history, including a major controversy.

That movement is based on the idea that much artistic expression is natural if it is not blocked, and the blockages are due to personality factors. Hence the key to performance mastery was some form of personal growth towards psychological healthiness. At one time anybody having technical difficulties was considered to be in need of psychoanalysis before he would make progress.

This theory is no longer in vogue, as far as I know, but the Inner Game of Tennis intuitive approaches may have grown out of it.

Within the theory I think belongs the controversy about whether art involves the freedom to express the inner individual, or the ability to convey the concept. As a simple example, suppose you are an actor required to portray a serial killer. That's easy if you are in fact an as yet undetected serial killer! however that happy state of affairs would be unlikely. Does the actor reach inside himself for the serial killer that lurks within? Or is he so professional an artist that he can portray an evil he does not himself feel? And, of course, if he can't do either it is because of one of those blockages curable by Freudian approaches.

Now that I've veered somewhat from mistakes, back to them.

The comment about a hesitation being better than a mistake horrified me. Sorry, I meant no offense, but to me a hesitation is far, far worse than a clumsily fingered wrong note. The hesitation allows the anxiety level to drop, but that's counterproductive when learning. The anxiety level shoots up as the time for the note approaches, generating more noise in the machine - which also generates the raw material for both creativity and technical improvement. And, significantly, produces the reward for correct play. The reduction of anxiety is enormously reinforcing, the technical term is negative reinforcement. Slow play reduces anxiety to unuseful levels. That's one of the reasons it is so comfortable and intuitive. We don't want anxiety so high it paralyzes us, but we need some to generate the noise.

I would point out also we've done no discussion of Skinner, et al, and the various stimulus chaining and reinforcement schedule approaches. Frankly I think they are more applicable to mistakes than psychoanalytic theorizing. Sorry kbk, I think that's the track you were on, but I think you've been led astray by assigning consciousness and motivation to a simple set of stimulus-response relationships. I think they are simple, just not visible.


Edited by TimR (10/03/09 08:36 PM)
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#1280210 - 10/03/09 08:40 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Horowitzian]
eweiss Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: Horowitzian
What else is one supposed to say after reading such a craptastic thread? The truth hurts, don't it?

Love the word "craptastic!" Will have to remember that one.
_________________________
Play New Age Piano
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#1280249 - 10/03/09 09:58 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: TimR]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Originally Posted By: TimR
The comment about a hesitation being better than a mistake horrified me. Sorry, I meant no offense, but to me a hesitation is far, far worse than a clumsily fingered wrong note. The hesitation allows the anxiety level to drop, but that's counterproductive when learning. The anxiety level shoots up as the time for the note approaches, generating more noise in the machine - which also generates the raw material for both creativity and technical improvement.


And if you do not have time either to be certain of which note you are about to play next or to sense the finger that is going to be playing it? Precisely how does launching into a random note simply for the sake of not stopping help either creativity or technical improvement? I can't see any way in which that could possibly make sense. If a student is working at learning a piece, personally I always stress that it's better to take time and get it right- after which you can go back and get the rhythm, once you know how to get to the correct notes. I really don't see how guessing is going to help in any fashion- UNLESS you are specifically practising the skills of playing a piece through at sight, rather than intending to learn it. Those students who start by going quickly with various wrong notes are rarely those who go on to achieve the most consistent performances. Any teacher can bear witness to that.

As is so often said, it's easier if you've never played anything inccorrectly in the first place. That's why slow practise is vital. It seems to fit perfectly with everything that is known about how the brain is able to reproduce movements that have been repeated. The point about going slow is that you make it possible to repeat things accurately. Launch in rapidly (particularly if you prefer to guess rather than take time to check uncertainties) and there is no realistic way of getting to a point of consistency. Habits are acquired through consistent reproduction of movement patterns. Not through making different mistakes each time you run through something that is not familiar at speed, simply for the sake of keeping the anxiety levels up. Your theory about anxiety sounds interesting, but do you have any sources that would demonstrate why removing the anxiety levels by practising slowly might be detrimental? I've never encountered such a concept before and frankly I'm intensely skeptical. Why should anxiety be desirable during the process of learning the notes? Quite how would that help the procedure of programming a series of movements into the brain? It's anxiety that results in the ugly 'stabbing' movements that students so often employ- when they panic and seize at the next note, rather than find a comfortable way of reaching it.

From my own experience, the slower I practise and the less anxiety I feel when practising, the better I play when I play at speed. That comes after years of only practising quickly, without bothering to stop and learn the details first. I really don't see how you can honestly suggest that going slow is bad. Going too slow rarely introduces problems (provided the student remebers to plan ahead in groups of notes, rather than merely think about one note at a time). Conversely, going faster than you are ready for ALWAYS introduces problems. It's clear which is more dangerous. Anything that isn't slow enough for the student to get things right (when starting off) is too fast. There are alternate ways that involve working on small units at quicker speeds that can also be useful, but the basic principle is simple- anything that involves guessing or imprecision is counterproductive to learning. It's not exactly hard to see why.




Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 10:32 PM)
_________________________
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#1280258 - 10/03/09 10:44 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: Nyiregyhazi]
TimR Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3160
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi


My focus on preparation is about execution. The very reason this is the case is because I wasted years thinking solely about the general impression I wished to create, without making terribly much improvement. I did scarcely anything that could be counted as 'practise' because I was only concerned with aiming for the bigger picture within that particular run-through (however sloppy it might be in the details), rather than with stopping to isolate the components that would fit together.

<snip>

Detail really is everything, in the formative stages.


You have described two very different approaches to learning music, athletics, etc. These are the two standard approaches - the intuitive vs the analytical, the goal oriented vs the process oriented, the dissociator vs the hyperassociator, many ways to describe this.

You started with the wrong one - for you. And you eventually figured out the right one - for you. I hope you have not leapt to the conclusion that this is therefore the right one for everybody.

I strongly believe the learning approach to be neurologically hardwired, not within our control. We can use one or the other, but not choose. And I think that accounts for much of the frustration when a student fails to make progress using the approach that worked so very very well for his teacher.
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#1280264 - 10/03/09 11:02 PM Re: I know how mistakes happen! [Re: TimR]
Nyiregyhazi Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/24/09
Posts: 2464
Originally Posted By: TimR
Originally Posted By: Nyiregyhazi


My focus on preparation is about execution. The very reason this is the case is because I wasted years thinking solely about the general impression I wished to create, without making terribly much improvement. I did scarcely anything that could be counted as 'practise' because I was only concerned with aiming for the bigger picture within that particular run-through (however sloppy it might be in the details), rather than with stopping to isolate the components that would fit together.

<snip>

Detail really is everything, in the formative stages.


You have described two very different approaches to learning music, athletics, etc. These are the two standard approaches - the intuitive vs the analytical, the goal oriented vs the process oriented, the dissociator vs the hyperassociator, many ways to describe this.

You started with the wrong one - for you. And you eventually figured out the right one - for you. I hope you have not leapt to the conclusion that this is therefore the right one for everybody.

I strongly believe the learning approach to be neurologically hardwired, not within our control. We can use one or the other, but not choose. And I think that accounts for much of the frustration when a student fails to make progress using the approach that worked so very very well for his teacher.


The issue is why your idea for alternative might work and particularly how? I don't believe for a moment that it would work for anyone but a true genius. You ignored my questions about the 'anxiety' claims. What is your basis for those? And why is it better go completely wrong for the sake of not stopping? I'm really struggling to see your point.

Also, yes we can choose. I 'chose' to start making an effort to go slowly and accurately. I improved immeasuarbly as a result, compared to when I used to just spend all day sightreading pieces that I had never worked on the details for. You have to consider the reasons why such an approach offers benefits, before you start to consider whether alternatives might offer equal benefits. Generally they don't and for good reason. Going fast early on is dangerous because it increases both the likelihood of physical errors and mental errors. It's not just some old wives tale that it's better to practise slow. There's a wealth of evidence for it. Slow practise can't offer absolutely everything (I'm also extremely keen on practising small overlapping units at speed), but unless you have the talent of a Volodos, it's simply lunacy to expect to make optimal progress without it.


Edited by Nyiregyhazi (10/03/09 11:06 PM)
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