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To practice or not to practice? If yes, then how?

Well, if you are reading this post then there is a good chance you have answered the first question. If that answer is yes, then ...lets talk.

The most important part to a successful violin, piano, trumpet etc career is your ability to become a great master of your instrument. To become one you need to posses a musical talent, predisposition to a certain instrument, have analytical mind, have great teacher and iron will to succeed. Obviously that list is incomplete as each of us can add a point or two based on our experience and knowledge. For me -practice is an important part of that list.

What to practice, and how much ?

We all love practicing or going over things that we know. We repeat it with pleasure, getting compliments from friends and family members. It gives us a boost of confidence. Great. And then there is a problem spot. Let's identify that spot and let's practice those few bars. Or maybe just a shift or specific run. It will become better. I promise. First look at the music. Tell yourself what is the problem. Sing. Sing again. Try to play. Slowly, please. Don't rush! Use metronome. Repeat. Slowly...Do it again. Thank you. I think, it is a bit better. Now you can play it faster. Please use the metronome! Make it your friend.

Now you can go back and play the whole episode to see if it sounds to your satisfaction. I hope it will not satisfy your ear and taste. Not because it is not better, but because your inner ear now trained to listen more acutely. Congratulation! You are becoming your own teacher!

And that is the answer to the second question - how much to practice?

It depends on your desire to get better. For some people it is enough to practice for an hour. But as you become better with small details you will want to practice more and more as hours would fly by as seconds, and you may be surprised how many hours you have spent with your beloved instruments.

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