Welcome to the final article in this series, How To Practice Creatively! If you've read all of the previous articles in this series, you may be wondering why I saved "Identifying the Problem" for last. That's because this is the longest and most involved part of creative practicing. Finding creative solutions is the most
So far in this series I've talked about being very focused on practicing, detailing what specific tasks you should plan for each day, troubleshooting your problems, creative ways you can maximize your time and enjoyment at the piano. But there's one very important part that's missing from the process - what I call "Just
To some of you, the idea of practicing every day seemed fairly obvious when you decided to take up piano. But I know that for others, this is a real struggle. Sometimes, you desire to get to it, but you have so many demands on you during the day that by the time you get
Have you ever been working really hard on a project for a long period of time, and you just needed to get up and walk away from it for a bit? Perhaps when there was a good place to stop, like at the end of a segment, you went to the kitchen grab a
Many times we get so focused on the sound that we want and the desire to get to the point where we can play our piece and just enjoy hearing it, that we ignore the signals our body is trying to tell us when something is not quite right with our technique. Sometimes the technique
Practice S-L-O-W-L-Y I can’t stress this enough. I even typed it slowly for emphasis. Most people who have studied some piano are aware of the concept of slow practice, but many do not employ this technique to its fullest potential. You may even be wondering why this would be a part of Creative Practicing that is supposed
In Part 2 of How to Practice Creatively, I talked about Focused Practice sessions where you pinpoint the problem areas and work only on those, with a play-through of the entire piece as close to tempo as possible every 2-3 days. This intentional kind of practice is one way to keep the mind engaged and
In Part 1 of How to Practice Creatively, I spoke about blind repetition inducing a phenomenon in the brain called "masking," whereby the brain doesn't pay attention to a repeated, predictable event like a clock ticking or a whirring of a fan after it knows that event will continue as before. So the "cure"
So you’ve decided to take the plunge into studying piano. Maybe it’s been a lifelong dream and now is the perfect time in your life to finally begin, or maybe you had lessons as a child and always regretted quitting. Or perhaps your children want to take lessons and you’d like to learn alongside
Most adults who take up piano have an image of what it means to practice piano that often involves spending hours of pure enjoyment listening to themselves play beautiful music. Then they sit down at their first or maybe even 10th practice session and realize that it's actually quite far from what they imagined.