My recital

Posted by: LadyElton

My recital - 06/03/01 04:41 PM

Hi all,

I wish I could say that my recital went well, but the opposite is true \:\( After all the practising I did, I still messed up. Stage fright got to me and my mind went blank when I got up there. Even having the music in front of me didn't help. I was crushed. I wanted so much to do well. I felt like I let everyone down - my family, my teacher and myself. I questioned how much talent I have (or don't have) and wondered if I was meant to play the piano. (I know, I know. I shouldn't be so hard on myself, but I guess it was just my depression and low self-esteem talking. It tends to make me catastrophize (sp?) everything. I even thought my friends would think less of me, my teacher would drop me as a student, my girlfriend would break up with me - and yes I know all that won't happen.) After we got home, I played the piece for my grandmother, with few mistakes. (BTW - I also came out to my grandmother and she is totally accepting. \:\) ) So there's no doubt that I can play it. I guess I was upset that my anxiety got the best of me. Thanks for listening to me vent. Take care.

Hilary - who thinks she better start preparing for next year's recital right now ;\)
Posted by: Alex

Re: My recital - 06/03/01 05:28 PM

Hilary,

Don't let this get you down. Everyone of us pianists here have stories to tell where we totally screwed up. Mine was during my junior recital where I was playing one of the Rag Caprices by Milhaud. I played the first 8 measures 4 or 5 times and then jumped to the last 8 measures. Left out 2.5 pages in between. I certainly have others too.

The key is to keep playing in front of people as much as possible. You will get better at it - I promise. Also remember that a performance altered by nerves is really no reflection on your talent. It's more of a reflection on your nerves and inexperience.

Plus, cool about your grandmother. My wife pushed through the domestic partnership benefits program for EDS. I heard lots of stories about coming out - some good and some not so good. I'm glad yours is a good one.

Alex
Posted by: jodi

Re: My recital - 06/03/01 05:41 PM

Hilary - I completely understand your stage fright - and it has nothing to do with how talented you are. At my last recital a few weeks ago (the first one I have done since my senior year in high school 24 years ago) I completely blanked at the beginning of the first song. I started an octave too high, and I was looking RIGHT AT THE MUSIC and I couldn't remember where the A above middle C was. I am not making this up, and I'm not anywhere near being a beginner. (I'm not saying that you are, its just that this stuff can happen no matter how experienced you are) Unfortunately, the only way to get better at playing in front of people is to PLAY in front of people. You need to start small, but you should play the first two lines of any song you are working on for anyone willing to listen. Like everytime someone comes over to your house. It will get better, I promise. I get less nervous than I used to.
There is also a very good book called "Soprano On Her Head" - I can't remember the author, but its all about fighting stage fright, and it might help you. You could look it up on Amazon.com
Best of luck! Jodi

[ June 03, 2001: Message edited by: jodi ]
Posted by: Diarmuid

Re: My recital - 06/03/01 07:05 PM

Hillary don't take it so badly. If I were you I'd have a laugh about it \:\) Whenever I make a botch of anything in public I always have a giggle about it afterwards. It's really not that serious \:\)

And well done with your grandmother, she sounds like a very cool lady
Posted by: Brendan

Re: My recital - 06/03/01 08:02 PM

I echo all that's come before - don't worry about it; it's just one performance. None of those awful things that you said you thought would happen will happen, so there's no point even torturing yourself thinking about it. Next time, just have fun and relax!

Brendan
Posted by: Cork

Re: My recital - 06/03/01 09:51 PM

Hilary,

My heart goes out to you; playing piano for an audience is about as scary a thing as I've ever done.

I've sung solos in front of my peers in high school (who thought choir was for sissies); I've lectured fellow MBA students in Corporate Finance; I've addressed Boards of Directors and shareholders. But I've never been as terrified as I am when I face the 88 with an audience.

There really is only one cure: do it more often. Get used to performing, and it won't scare you.

You've conquered a number of terrifying things in your life. You can conquer this, too.

Best,
Cork
Posted by: Dan

Re: My recital - 06/04/01 05:36 PM

Hang in there Hilary! My piano teacher tells a funny story about losing it while (trying) to play for others:

"It was Joan's first appearance at the monthly performance class. As she took her seat at the piano, the other students settled down to see how far she had advanced. Joan showed an excellent posture, and focused quietly on the keys. Clearly she was prepared to do her best. As the seconds ticked by, one of the other students leaned over to whisper "Boy, she really is getting fully focused".

Finally, Joan spoke "Now where the hell is Middle C?" "

All the best in your future recitals. Don't wait till next year though! Sit down at the next piano you pass by (in your local music store, in the mall, in a hotel, or wherever), and play something. Anything! Learn to tune out your surroundings so that it's just you and the piano your making beautiful music with. Don't allow anyone else into your mental picture, just you and the piano.

Regards,
Dan
Posted by: jodi

Re: My recital - 06/04/01 06:42 PM

"'Finally, Joan spoke "Now where the hell is Middle C?' "

MAJOR \:D , Dan! (that's EXACTLY how I felt)

Thanks for the laugh. Jodi
Posted by: MacDuff

Re: My recital - 06/04/01 08:16 PM

Surely someone has written a work that starts with 30 seconds indecision, then sounds as if it has three false starts, a mid-point memory lapse, and a blurred final cadence in the wrong key! What's the old Albert Einstein line (he was an imperfect violinist) -- something like, "I played it exactly as Mozart wrote it, what non-sense!"

A dear family friend of mine is a Friskin-trained piano teacher around whom I (uncharacteristically) play like a total idiot. Oh well, she DESERVES to hear my worst playing!
:p

[ June 04, 2001: Message edited by: MacDuff ]
Posted by: LadyElton

Re: My recital - 06/04/01 09:17 PM

Hi all,

I just to thank all of yas for being so supportive. I really appreciate it. I'm feeling better about my abilities. I love music too much and am absolutely crazy about the piano. In a way, it took this incident to realize how much I love them. I don't give up that easily.

Hilary - who thinks her new theme song is "I Love A Piano" \:D
Posted by: wghornsby

Re: My recital - 06/04/01 10:22 PM

Some of these posts make me recall when I first started visiting the Pianist Corner about a year ago; there was a topic re. "your most embarrassing moment" and Byrony posted one of the funniest things I'd ever read. Did anyone happen to save that? I'd love to see it again.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 09:00 PM

Just don't be so hard on yourself. We all mess up. Try to find ways to calm yourself down before performing (or learn to love the nerves). Try some breathing techniques or take some astragalus supplements. It has nerve calming qualities. Good luck with your next performance.
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 09:02 PM

I hope she got over it and had many successful recitals in the following years. The sad recital was 11 1/2 years ago.
Posted by: DameMyra

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 10:19 PM

Hilary, I am glad to see you're feeling a little better about the experience. We all have stories to tell. My teacher refers to playing in public as an "act of courage" and something to be proud of.
Posted by: Mark_C

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 10:21 PM

HOW did you find this thing from 111 years ago? ha

(And btw did you realize it was that old?)

Originally Posted By: DameMyra
Hilary, I am glad to see you're feeling a little better about the experience....

You mean were feeling a little better. grin
We have no idea about the present! smile
Posted by: carey

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 10:24 PM

Originally Posted By: DameMyra
Hilary, I am glad to see you're feeling a little better about the experience. We all have stories to tell. My teacher refers to playing in public as an "act of courage" and something to be proud of.


One more time folks.....

Hilary posted this thread on PW 11 years ago.

Her last post on PW was in May 2008.

I doubt she's going read your current messages - but I suppose it's the thought that counts !! smile
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 10:54 PM

Originally Posted By: Mark_C
HOW did you find this thing from 111 years ago? ha


Maybe he clicked on one of the last pages (by mistake? laugh ) Somewhere near page 1280.
Posted by: daviel

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 10:55 PM

The first time I had to play a prepared piece for a music class in college it was like I had never seen the piece in my life - I completely went into vapor lock and just couldn't play it. I thought I was prepared; I'd practiced the thing into infinity. I was devastated and although I have never forgotten it, I got over it. Time heals all wounds. It's kind of like I remember my first car wreck, but I can drive today. It helps, me anyway - I don't know about anybody else - to like Dan above says, to play in public more. Good luck with it - and give your grandmother a big hug for me.

I just noticed how old this thread is! Did she ever report back on her later triumphs? or did she quit?

Posted by: Mark_C

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 11:04 PM

Originally Posted By: ChopinAddict
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
HOW did you find this thing from 111 years ago? ha

Maybe he clicked on one of the last pages (by mistake? laugh ) Somewhere near page 1280.

Y'know, I didn't know we could do that -- never noticed.

Let's see what else is there....

(Might bump a good one.....or a real bad one, doesn't matter.) grin
Posted by: DameMyra

Re: My recital - 12/27/12 11:05 PM

Duh! (Smacking head.) Looks like I need to pay more attention to the dates on these threads. Well, now we know who would be the first to get eaten if there was a Zombie Apocalypse.
Posted by: Minnesota Marty

Re: My recital - 12/28/12 10:40 AM


Originally Posted By: Mark_C
HOW did you find this thing from 111 years ago?


WOW - I just learned something new! Piano World existed in 1901!

(Just in good fun)
Posted by: Mark_C

Re: My recital - 12/28/12 11:29 AM

Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
WOW - I just learned something new! Piano World existed in 1901!

That's right!
It just wasn't on the internet yet. grin
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: My recital - 12/28/12 02:56 PM

Yep. They used to meet in aristocratic circles with chamber music in the background (which, however, made discussions more difficult). smile