Recital/Festival Preparation

Published: Oct 14, 2014  |   Category: Uncategorized

The time is drawing near to the Fall Festival and Fall Recital.  Students - you have been working so hard, and you're doing a great job!  Now is the time to practice very hard, and work on specific things so that you will have a confident, exciting, and beautiful performance.  Remember, playing it at home is very different from playing in front of an audience or judge.  You want to be sure you know your piece "inside and out" so you can perform well with an audience watching.  Here are some things you can do to provide "insurance" for a good performance.  These are from the treasure cards students earned last year (review your cards for even more ideas):

Safety Ramps:  Divide your piece into sections.  These are your "safety ramps".  Practice starting at each of those spots, randomly.  This  will help your memory be even more secure, and will give you the security that if you stop for any reason, you can start at one of your safety ramps.

The Distraction Game:  This is a fun game to help students maintain their concentration and solidify their memory.  Ask someone in your family to distract you while you play your piece, and see if you can keep going, no matter what.  It can be talking loudly, clapping, dancing, anything you can think of! 

Long-Short/Short-Long:  To even out fast passages, try playing the passage with a long-short rhythm, then with a short-long rhythm.  This trick works amazingly well! 

Firm Fingertips:  The piano you play may have a different touch than what you are used to.  Sometimes with large grand pianos, soft notes may not come out easily.  Remember to have curved fingers and firm fingertips to avoid this problem.  Do some finger strengthening exercises to prepare (making O's, chains, pressing fingertips together, for example). 

Slow Motion:  Play your piece very slowly and intentionally three times, focusing on a specific thing each time (dynamics, steady tempo, legatos/staccatos, for example).  This will help you become very aware of specific things to work on, and will solidify your memory even more.

Imagine Your Performance:  Before you go to sleep, hear the piece in your head from start to finish, exactly the way you want it to sound.  Imagine yourself walking up to the piano, performing, and bowing. 

Think Before Performing:  The day of your performance, remember to:  1.  Check your bench position.  2.  Find the pedal.  3.  Find your hand position.  4.  Think about the piece before you play, getting the tempo established.  5.  Enjoy your performance!  6.  Keep going no matter what.  6.  Bow!  Congratulations! 

You will all be wonderful, and I am looking forward to hearing you perform!







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