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Proper Practice Methods

October 13, 2011

Certain things remain true for an eternity such as ‘You can’t reinvent the wheel’ and one of these things is the necessities of proper live shows and practice. In classical music the most practiced and rehearsed parts of a song are the very beginning and the very end. There is an important reason that these are rehearsed to the point that the musicians could play them in their sleep and begin to loathe them. These are the parts that people will most remember and leave the greatest impression on them.

Even if the middle section is rough everyone will completely forget it if the opening and closing are practiced to perfection. This is not to say that the middle section can be played poorly or sloppily but that a greater amount of time should be spent on the opening and closing of the song. Playing 20 seconds stopping and going back to do it over and over is completely standard in Classical music. Some times an entire hour can be spent just repeatedly playing these parts.

This further extends to what is said and how the people on stage stand or enter in. Symphonies spend time with the basics of simple things like sitting still or everyone taking in the first breath at the same time. These create an atmosphere of professionalism that can further extend to any form of music. Many major stadium bands learn how to enter the stage or strike the first note to completely blow the audience away from start to end. The beggining sets the expectations for the rest of the show and can influence the perception of events that the audience has.

Conversely the ending of a concert much like a movie is the last impression and will be the best remembered part of the night. If a concert ends on a bad note it will leave a sour aftertaste and can change how the prior events are thought of. Like most other forms of entertainment everything prior to the ending should be a massive build up to the finale.

Practicing is essential to perfecting you music and live show but if the right techniques and methods are not used when practicing then the outcome will not be as desired. Make sure that like everything else you do in your career that your efforts don’t go to waste and that you the proper techniques and methods to attain your goals.


One Comment leave one →
  1. April 21, 2012 1:28 PM

    Putting in the practice time is important, and even more so is choosing what kind of practice. You want to have high awareness of what’s happening and keep your experience goals up front, ie. a state of relaxed awareness, of getting on the inside, of becoming one with the music. It’s not recommended to do things again and again unless you bring that level of awareness each time.

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