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  • Writer's pictureGwen Ryan

End of Summer: What Have We Learned?

I spent a lot of time this summer practicing, but I honestly felt disappointed with myself at first because I felt as if I didn't actually add very much to my repertoire. It's hard to keep focused when you aren't living in your own space, and when you're in a transition period.


THAT BEING SAID...


I learned so much! Mostly about how to practice.

First, I discovered that a lot of times when I said I practiced for 2 or 3 hours, I really only FOCUSED for about an 1-1.5 hours. I realized this when I started timing the sections of practice that I actually played and learned.

Second, I realized that personally, I CAN'T sit there and really focus on playing for 2 or 3 hours straight. I really need to divide my practice up.

Third, there's a lot of the music I learn that doesn't need that much time. I found myself doing lots of run-throughs of pieces that aren't at a time when they need a run through- they needed focused work on maybe 2 or 3 sections of about 4-8 measures, sometimes less. I kept falling apart on my runs because I wasn't paying attention to what really needed practicing.


I've started timing the actual time I practice, and dividing it in sections. I'll time how long I spend on scales, on tone, on technique, on repertoire, etc. I will then take notes on every section of practice time I do, since I can't do that many hours at once. I also note down exactly WHICH MEASURES need the work, and sometimes I'll spend 15 minutes just working on that before moving on to something completely different, cutting down on the time each piece takes to work on since I wasn't doing so many runs.


What have you learned about your practice recently? How did you adapt?

Unmute- Let's Talk Flute!


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