If there’s one thing you could say with certainty that all we harpists want, it’s being able to play the piece we’re working on. That’s why we started the harp, so we could play beautiful music on a beautiful instrument beautifully. But we all know the struggle it takes to make that happen. And we all know the frustration of persisting through the struggle and feeling defeated because there are two measures smack in the middle of the piece that just won’t work.
Call them what you will: problem spots, tricky spots, twisty measures, awkward passages, or maybe names that involve four-letter words. These spots are like a teenager’s pimples. They appear at the worst times and no matter what you do, you can’t really cover them up. They seem to last forever. And the more you mess with them the worse, the worse they get.
Fortunately, pimples do eventually go away. But problem measures won’t necessarily. I know that doesn’t seem like the positive kind of outlook you’re used to hearing from me, but the plain truth is that if the practice you’re doing now isn’t fixing the problem, doing more of it won’t either, no matter how much of it you do. You need to do something different.
Today’s show is all about those pesky problem spots - not pimples, the musical kind - and how to actually fix them. We’ll look at the hidden cost of continuing to hammer away at those tricky measures and the surprising ways you can shift your focus and solve the problem.
This is an issue we all face every single day. Every piece we learn has something just a little different from anything we’ve had to do before. So we are going to learn some tricks that are just a little different themselves so we can put those measures behind us and get on with the music.
Links to things I think you might be interested in that were mentioned in the podcast episode:
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