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#2111292 - 07/02/13 12:51 AM lessons this week embarrassing!
Sweet06 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/22/13
Posts: 408
so i went to lessons today and i guess i was fingering the f chord wrong with my left hand and it ruined all the practicing i had done frown. the previous week i impressed my teacher completely and i was hoping to keep doing that but i definitely didn't this week frown. for some reason too even the stuff i had practiced and had maybe not "perfected" but got damn close, i stumbled so hard on those as well. (no f chord) all in all i feel like i just need to practice my ass off so i can go in next monday and crush it.
_________________________
"Doesn't practicing on the piano suck?!?!"
"The joy is in the practicing. It's like relationships. Yeah, orgasms are awesome, but you can't make love to someone who you have no relationship with!"

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#2111320 - 07/02/13 01:54 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
While your work ethic is admirable, you should strive to not feel self-conscious in front of your teacher. The relationship needs to be honest and open for the most progress to be made. Also, the best place to make mistakes is actually in front of your teacher because then they can help you to correct it and move forward with better habits. Ideally, you'll come to learn to notice these things in your own practice (the most effective use of piano - or any other - lessons is to learn how to effectively be your own teacher) and be able to nip them in the bud immediately.

And don't feel bad about mis-fingering things at the beginning (or really even later on with more difficult material) because becoming really proficient is a long process. The best thing to do is try and first think of possible fingerings for passages away from the piano, and then later try them all out at the piano to not only see what's most comfortable, but what's most practical for facilitating speed and smoothness of tone/dynamics. After one is decided on, write it on the page in pencil so you'll remember it.


as for:
Originally Posted By: Sweet06
for some reason too even the stuff i had practiced and had maybe not "perfected" but got damn close, i stumbled so hard on those as well


Oftentimes when we practice, while we think we might be playing a section or whole piece well, there will be little pauses and hiccups throughout, that, when repeated enough, are unconsciously ignored and left unnoticed until we try and perform in front of others. The best solution to this is to record yourself playing your piece(s) not only in little phrases/sections, but also occasionally as a whole and then listening to the recording(s) with critical ears and, again, try to be our own teacher. This is until our ears (and egos laugh ) become good enough to detect these things on the fly.

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#2111328 - 07/02/13 02:21 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
casinitaly Offline


Gold Supporter until March 1 2014


Registered: 03/01/10
Posts: 5256
Loc: Italy
Bob has given you some great advice.

Learn to be ok making mistakes in front of your teacher, record what you think is going well for a reality check.

I have, numerous times, thought I was doing very well with a piece, only to record myself and hear all the weak spots very clearly! At first it was disappointing, ..ok, crushing. Once I got over that I started to (almost) enjoy being able to spot where I hadn't noticed an error. I will sometimes listen with the score, sometimes not.

As for making mistakes in front of the teacher, yes, I know how hard it is when you think you have something nailed, only to find out you've had it wrong. (Happened to me over the Christmas break - 3 weeks of playing something with an incorrect rhythm....ugh...but it only took one week to correct it, so don't despair!)

Embarrassing as it may be, we all have to learn to feel safe in demonstrating what we can - and can not- do to the teacher. Remember your teacher isn't passing judgement on you, he or she is watching you to see what you are doing and help you do it better.

It is hard to get over being self-conscious, but worth the effort!
_________________________
XVIII-XXXV
Everything's too hard until you make it easy. Follow your teacher's instructions and practice wisely/much, and you'll soon wonder how you ever found it hard ;)-BobPickle
Performance anxiety: make it part of your daily routine and deal with it...Cope! zrtf90

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#2111332 - 07/02/13 02:36 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Whizbang Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 815
It happens.

Not infrequently.

Embrace struggle.
_________________________
Whizbang
amateur ragtime pianist

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#2111334 - 07/02/13 02:39 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1490
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Quote:

I have, numerous times, thought I was doing very well with a piece, only to record myself and hear all the weak spots very clearly! At first it was disappointing, ..ok, crushing. Once I got over that I started to (almost) enjoy being able to spot where I hadn't noticed an error. I will sometimes listen with the score, sometimes not.

As for making mistakes in front of the teacher, yes, I know how hard it is when you think you have something nailed, only to find out you've had it wrong. (Happened to me over the Christmas break - 3 weeks of playing something with an incorrect rhythm....ugh...but it only took one week to correct it, so don't despair!)


Amen! Making mistakes is part of the process of learning. And "bad" lessons -- they just happen, sometimes.

. Charles

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#2111346 - 07/02/13 04:00 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
earlofmar Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 1731
Loc: Australia
I have made some walloping errors at my lessons, just last week I started on the wrong note and couldn't work out what was wrong. Another thing I find myself doing is making silly excuses why I am making errors, which my teacher is very gracious enough to stay quiet while I ramble on.

Invariably I think a third of my lessons are good and productive, a third are bland and unmemorable, the remainder are some sort of mayhem that I actually have to pay for. Main thing though is to learn through your mistakes and have fun, or at least have a laugh about it later.
_________________________
I thought I understood endurance sport; then I took up piano
XXXV-6-XXX

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#2111358 - 07/02/13 04:37 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
wouter79 Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 3605
Bobpickle +1

And yes fingering 'errors' are really a big problem, when the old fingering is already drilled in because it's extremely hard to override/change these old drills.

Therefore I try to discuss fingerings (the hard ones only of course) with my teacher before committing and drill.

Sometimes it's better to stick with the old fingering even if you find a better one later. Only if it really does not work after drilling hard, I attempt the dreaded "change it" ...
_________________________

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#2111402 - 07/02/13 07:29 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Andy Platt Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2419
Loc: Virginia, USA
Fantastic lesson - you learned something!!!


OK, probably not how you are feeling but there's two sides to this.
_________________________
  • Liszt - Liebestrume No. 3, S541
  • Schumann - Ende vom Lied, Opus 12.8
  • Haydn - Sonata in Gm, Hob. XVI/44

Kawai K3

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#2111405 - 07/02/13 07:40 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
WiseBuff Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/03/05
Posts: 812
Loc: Brighton Colorado
The desire to impress the teacher is one I share...I don't think she sees that as her role. Her role is to find the next step to even better.

I'm at SummerKeys this week and yesterday was the first day and my first personal lesson. The teacher is gracious and warm and picked apart two pages in minute detail for the whole hour. Wow...the level of detail to "articulate" this piece more musically is amazing. He also affirmed by ability to have it up to speed by the Friday night performance. So, no he wasn't impressed with all my work to date BUT there was something really good about working that level of detail on a piece. Now...I have 3 hours of practice time today to see if I can absorb what we worked on yesterday.
_________________________



Love to learn

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#2111498 - 07/02/13 10:57 AM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
jdw Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/04/11
Posts: 1016
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
Yes, mistakes in lessons are a good thing (in principle). I have to remind myself to feel good about them as great learning opportunities. This is hardest when my teacher has to tell me something over and over again.

Here I'm not talking about mistakes in notes or rhythms (those I recognize myself!), but technical issues that recur in different pieces of music. I'll think I've got it, but dang if the same thing doesn't turn up later in something else, when I'm not thinking about it.

Luckily, my teacher is very patient. And I like to think that each encounter with a problem takes me closer to the solution.
_________________________
1989 Baldwin R
Currently working on:
Grieg, Papillon
Mozart, K 330
Brahms, Op. 118 no. 2

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#2111602 - 07/02/13 01:37 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Kymber Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/25/08
Posts: 1348
Loc: MA
Awwww. don't worry. That's why you are taking lessons - to learn.
I know how you feel though. I used to do the same thing. I'd practice so much and couldn't wait to show my teacher. I would either mess it all up or do fine. When I messed up I'd be bummed because I was like "i know this, i did right all week" sigh. But it was fine she would find other things that could be improved upon. Oh well. That's the way it goes.
But, as long as you learn from your mistakes and keep going you will be ok.
smile
_________________________
“The doubters said, "Man cannot fly," The doers said, "Maybe, but we'll try,"
And finally soared in the morning glow while non-believers watched from below.”
― Bruce Lee

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#2111646 - 07/02/13 02:58 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Sweet06 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/22/13
Posts: 408
thanks for the kind words folks. that IS why i have a teacher tho and why im not self taught, so in a way im GLAD im not teaching myself 100% perfect or my teacher would be pointless! you guys really did help with the perspective shift so I definitely appreciate! Can't wait till I'm good enough to start giving out advice :D, maybe in 3 years haha
_________________________
"Doesn't practicing on the piano suck?!?!"
"The joy is in the practicing. It's like relationships. Yeah, orgasms are awesome, but you can't make love to someone who you have no relationship with!"

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#2111662 - 07/02/13 03:27 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
casinitaly Offline


Gold Supporter until March 1 2014


Registered: 03/01/10
Posts: 5256
Loc: Italy
Originally Posted By: Sweet06
you guys really did help with the perspective shift so I definitely appreciate! Can't wait till I'm good enough to start giving out advice :D, maybe in 3 years haha


I am sure it won't even be 3 years - there are always new pianist arriving here in the forums. In six months you'll be able to offer something to a "fresh" newbie! smile
_________________________
XVIII-XXXV
Everything's too hard until you make it easy. Follow your teacher's instructions and practice wisely/much, and you'll soon wonder how you ever found it hard ;)-BobPickle
Performance anxiety: make it part of your daily routine and deal with it...Cope! zrtf90

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#2111720 - 07/02/13 04:56 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: earlofmar]
TwoSnowflakes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 1385
Originally Posted By: earlofmar

Invariably I think a third of my lessons are good and productive, a third are bland and unmemorable, the remainder are some sort of mayhem that I actually have to pay for. Main thing though is to learn through your mistakes and have fun, or at least have a laugh about it later.


Amen to that.

I also had to get over making mistakes in front of my teacher. I just felt almost as if I needed to demonstrate that I did NOT need lessons in order to merit her expertise. How backwards was that? If I were to really struggle with something, somehow, I would be demonstrating that I was not worth her time. Obviously that's a terrible way to think about it, and the fastest way to clench up and make lots of ridiculous errors you didn't even make when you were practicing!

I still feel like I owe her progress (and I do) but I am not constantly feeling embarrassed I did not perfect the piece since she last saw me.

But I can totally relate to the original poster in that you want to show progress, and when a major part of your progress is incapable of being shown because the fingering change now pull the rug out from under you, that's disappointing. I remember having a particular part of my scles/arpeggios/cadences really fluid. But in the middle, I'd done a little switcheroo with third finger and the fourth. Oops. Well, change that (which she did, immediately upon seeing it), and I'm pretty much back to square one, and I went from a very nice fluid and fast set of exercises to play a note and think, play a note and think, play a note and think...

Of course, it's my fault. But it doesn't make it any less disappointing! smile HEre, I thought I was going to get the "wow, you really nailed that!" and instead I got, "hey, don't worry about it, I'm sure you'll have it by next week."
_________________________
Currently:
Bach, French Suites, No. 3 BWV 814
Brahms, Op. 118 No. 2 Intermezzo A major
Chopin, Mazurka Op. 67 No.4
With the pedal I love to meddle; When Paderewski comes this way... -Irving Berlin

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#2112181 - 07/03/13 12:27 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Sweet06 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/22/13
Posts: 408
totally agree snowflakes. Putting it like that makes 150%. I'm glad I only practiced the chord wrong for a week instead of a year and THEN finding out it was wrong.... a week is very simple to rewire, in fact i've already rewired that silly left hand and re-do'ing my homework was leagues easier cos I had all the other parts down anyways :D, we'll see what the next monday brings!
_________________________
"Doesn't practicing on the piano suck?!?!"
"The joy is in the practicing. It's like relationships. Yeah, orgasms are awesome, but you can't make love to someone who you have no relationship with!"

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#2112282 - 07/03/13 04:05 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
TwoSnowflakes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 1385
ha, well, I will say that I now pay a lot more attention to the fingering than I did. Well, I really did try to get the fingering, but then I lost the vigilance when I started working on general fluidity and speed and the fingering error crept in without me noticing.

Now, I check my fingering at least once during my scale run-throughs, especially when I'm convinced "I've got it" just to make sure I'm actually correct.

And then, illogically, I was way too concerned with exact fingering on the supporting hand on one of my Chopin pieces which, frankly, didn't require that level of precision given the pedal usage and speed, though of course consistent fingering is always better than not. And yet had somehow not been super vigilant with scales, the application of which into music often requires speeds at which it's your funeral if you didn't lock them in using some kind of standard accepted fingering when you learned them. I mean, it's all well and good to change fingering in a particular piece because the music requires it, but your starting point should be the auto-pilot standard fingering because more often than not, it works just fine that way, and your brain can just...drop the scale right in there like it was some kind of module or library script (where my programming peeps at?) and the only thing you need to do from there is add the dynamics/musicality.

I learned my lesson, and now I utterly drill consistent fingerings in all my cadences, arpeggios, scales, chromatics, and chords.

And my Chopin has gotten a lot more expressive, hahaha. Plus, Chopin was not opposed to dropping in a big ol' run in places, and I've juuuust about got the one at the end of the C sharp nocturne. Woo hoo!
_________________________
Currently:
Bach, French Suites, No. 3 BWV 814
Brahms, Op. 118 No. 2 Intermezzo A major
Chopin, Mazurka Op. 67 No.4
With the pedal I love to meddle; When Paderewski comes this way... -Irving Berlin

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#2112427 - 07/03/13 08:33 PM Re: lessons this week embarrassing! [Re: Sweet06]
Sweet06 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/22/13
Posts: 408
hahaha i work @ godaddy, i do web development so i totally get what you mean for module and library script!! thanks a ton laugh. this forum rocks!
_________________________
"Doesn't practicing on the piano suck?!?!"
"The joy is in the practicing. It's like relationships. Yeah, orgasms are awesome, but you can't make love to someone who you have no relationship with!"

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