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#2115172 - 07/09/13 02:05 PM piano journey beyond the bench
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
When I started playing the piano, I, of course, enjoyed the journey very much. But there was something missing. I was content with the fact that I couldn't afford a teacher. I was content with my progress. I was not content with my practice time of at least a hour a day - energy permitting - but it is improving slowly. I would be content if I could play 3 hours a day - I am not there yet. So what was missing? Well, the other day I headed out to the university. Growing up in a small isolated town, I very much appreciate living in a city with a university. I could go - and I did go - but more recently I would have to turn around and head home because my energy level was fading like a cheap battery. It could be that I have a better battery charger now or things are improving. It was wonderful. I found a comfortable chair and grabbed some piano magazines, Pianist, International Piano, and one that I hadn't seen before "Clavier companion". Some great stories about Chopin and his music and Schumann and his music. This is what was missing from my piano journey. Books, magazines, pamphlets on affordable piano events. An affordable education within reach. A priceless gift. Now there is nothing missing in my piano journey.

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#2115226 - 07/09/13 03:55 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
JosephAC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/12
Posts: 168
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Some days, I would practice for 4-5 hours a day and other days hardly one hour. While energy level is an important factor, there are definitely other determinant factors. I notice that after a holiday break, I have a new outlook, a new optiminum, a new determination to spend more time on the bench.
Nowadays, my discipline and goodwill is hampered and I am continously wondering and searching for the root cause. It seems to me that lack of good night sleep is my biggest deterrent.

I am also finding that as my music journey continues, I develop the stamina and the tenacity to approach my practice with a new meaning and explore what is out there. I always visualise myself as a small fish in the ocean and my earthy life as a speck in our expanding universe. There is so much to explore.
Will we ever reach the state of completeness ? We might discover another piece of the puzzle, but the puzzle has no boundary. Our boundary is limited to our thinking. We are prisoners of our thoughts.
Some claim that they achieve a state of wholeness and completeness through meditation. I experienced it occasionally. But it is a transient state and not a permanent state.

An interesting journey.... searching for meaning.



Edited by JosephAC (07/09/13 03:59 PM)

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#2115291 - 07/09/13 06:46 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
There is a lifetime worth of great books, articles, and such to read about the topic, I agree smile

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#2115298 - 07/09/13 07:08 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
earlofmar Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 1586
Loc: Australia
A wonderful post Michael99 and very insightful follow up JosephAC. I was chatting with a friend on Sunday who is training for a 250km run through extremely tough trail. He will have climbed three Mount Everest's if he completes the challenge. As an ex ultramarthon runner I should have been seething with jealously as he talked about it but no. Since switching my passion to piano I feel so content, I would be happy to do nothing else.
_________________________
I thought I understood endurance sport; then I took up piano
XXXV-6-XXX

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#2115438 - 07/09/13 11:51 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: earlofmar]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
earlofmar, I have read your post, here:

A wonderful post Michael99 and very insightful follow up JosephAC. I was chatting with a friend on Sunday who is training for a 250km run through extremely tough trail. He will have climbed three Mount Everest's if he completes the challenge. As an ex ultramarthon runner I should have been seething with jealously as he talked about it but no. Since switching my passion to piano I feel so content, I would be happy to do nothing else.

___________________________________________________

I was thinking about you today, because I have seen your references to your running as you have done so now.

In trying to increase my practice time, I realized that I should start out playing any of the pieces I have learned, along with the new stuff I am learning. But the key is to keep playing, like running, you have to stay in the grove. Resting, of course, but I mean once I have my time level up, then I can concentrate what it is I want to play in the time I have. There no rush or anything, but I would like to be increasing my learning rate just a little more than I am doing now.

Thanks for your post.


Edited by Michael_99 (07/09/13 11:53 PM)

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#2115443 - 07/09/13 11:57 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Bobpickle]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
Bobpickle, I have read your post, here:

There is a lifetime worth of great books, articles, and such to read about the topic, I agree smile

_________________________

You are right, Bob, I didn't want to leave the library but realized there is always next time.


Edited by Michael_99 (07/09/13 11:58 PM)

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#2115462 - 07/10/13 01:14 AM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 2088
Loc: Rocky Mountains
Michael...
I hope you know that. Today, with the advancements in technology, communication. Your library has the ability to get you any book from anywhere in the world. The librarians love doing this. That's what their job is all about. The libraries also carry the best books only. They have become a really great resource. Your library opens the world to you. For free. Yes there are some places that are so cheap. They will require you to pay the shipping on the book. I ran into that in one small town. Otherwise, they have the money, and want to do it.
I'm sure that your library at a University is top notch.
_________________________
Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon

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#2115488 - 07/10/13 02:31 AM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: rnaple]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
rnaple, I have read your post, here:

I hope you know that. Today, with the advancements in technology, communication. Your library has the ability to get you any book from anywhere in the world. The librarians love doing this. That's what their job is all about. The libraries also carry the best books only. They have become a really great resource. Your library opens the world to you. For free. Yes there are some places that are so cheap. They will require you to pay the shipping on the book. I ran into that in one small town. Otherwise, they have the money, and want to do it.
I'm sure that your library at a University is top notch.

_________________________________________

rnaple, Thanks for the post. I didn't know that. So I will make enquiries of services that are available.

I know that one of the only book stores in Canada, would NOT order a book for you. The bookstore said you had to order it online. I don't do any online business but support local businesses. I would go the university bookstore, and they would always order a book that you wanted. The Canadian bookstore now is selling stuff toys because book sales are down. How times change.

Again, thanks for the helpful post.

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#2115495 - 07/10/13 03:33 AM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 2088
Loc: Rocky Mountains
Michael...

I hope you didn't misunderstand. I don't know anything about book stores.
What I said is about libraries. You borrow the book only. To be returned.

The Unabomber was getting books in their original language through the library in Helena Montana.
_________________________
Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon

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#2115553 - 07/10/13 07:27 AM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
JosephAC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/12
Posts: 168
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Hey Michael,
I am not sure about Canada, but in Melbourne I access my local city library from my iPad. There is a vast and growing number of musical ebooks, audio books and journals that I read and listen to on my iPad at no cost to me. I do not need to visit my local library. Just check with your library as most libraries offer online services.


Edited by JosephAC (07/10/13 07:31 AM)

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#2115554 - 07/10/13 07:29 AM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: rnaple]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
rnaple, I have read your post, here:


I hope you didn't misunderstand. I don't know anything about book stores.
What I said is about libraries. You borrow the book only. To be returned.

The Unabomber was getting books in their original language through the library in Helena Montana.

_______________________________

No, I clearly understood that your remarks were about libraries. And I thank you for that.

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#2115576 - 07/10/13 08:35 AM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
JimmyT Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/12/13
Posts: 6
Loc: A Dark Basement in Maine
Michael_99 and others,

There are at least two venues for getting a copy of a book that is not in your library.

  • The library may purchase it outright (this sometimes happens if the request comes in at the end of the budget year when there is a surplus).
  • The library makes an interlibrary loan(ILL) request for a specific copy.


For US university libraries, typically, the ILL costs are covered by the library but they usually ask the maximum you are willing to pay to receive the manuscript/book (just in case the loaning party charges an exorbitant fee). I have used ILL requests at a few different university libraries and have never had to pay a penny. The one caveat is I was also an employee of those universities...not sure how they handle external ILL requests but unless they are for rare, valuable books, I would imagine the same process.
Regards,
--JT

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#2116338 - 07/11/13 09:13 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
PianoGamer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/10/13
Posts: 34
I'm coming a little late to this thread, but if you have Netflix, please please please watch two documentaries:

1)Pianomania - "This engaging documentary profiles Stefan Knüpfer, the master tuner for Steinway & Sons, who is tasked with the often-demanding job of pairing world-famous pianists with the right instrument and supervising all aspects of each piano's performance."

2) Note by Note: The Making of Steinway L1037 - "Chronicling the creation of Steinway pianos and the vanishing breed of craftsmen who build them, documentary filmmaker Ben Niles tracks the journey of these beautiful instruments from the factory to great concert halls."

I found both FASCINATING and inspiring and very educational!

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#2116354 - 07/11/13 10:08 PM Re: piano journey beyond the bench [Re: Michael_99]
Palmpirate Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/31/13
Posts: 222
Loc: B.C.Canada
All this chatter about books and libraries reminds me of how much I really did enjoy the libraries at uni when I was there. I do have an internet account at our provincial library here in B.C. and it is wonderful but a screen is not the same as holding a book or magazine. We have UCBC here now and I am motivated to go visit their library, and also find out what recitals and concerts they have. What I miss is live performances and I make a point of finding a concert - piano of course - whenever we travel.
_________________________

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