18 Ways to Improve in 2019

Happy New Year! In order to create great New Year goals, you need to dream big and plan bigger. Here is some great advice to help you get the job done.

1. "Scales are your foundation. There is no way around them, so get busy!"

2. "Exhale before you inhale! Many players forget this simple part of breathing and get into trouble with stale air."

3. It is often common that mistakes happen RIGHT after the place you think is the most challenging, because you would feel relieved at that point and not really focus on the music at the moment. Being able to remain mentally disciplined through the entire process will make you more prepared once you step on that stage.

4. "Remember, the hardest thing about practicing is opening the case! So once your case is open, find what works most efficiently for you."

5. "...personal relationships are key to success"

6. Approach your practice uninfluenced by emotion or personal prejudice

7. "...it is way more valuable to ditch the visual tuners and instead rely on drones."

8. "No matter what sound you want or type of articulation you will use, air pressure and support is paramount to good playing."

9. "Create your own opportunities with the vision and foresight of an entrepreneur."

10. "Practice to perfection. It may take a long time initially, but in the long run you’ll find that once you’ve acquired a particular skill it stays with you."

11. "...play for peers and colleagues and to have an informal performance before the actual recital or concert."

12. "Hearing is a precious gift and one that must be protected. Once hearing has been damaged through long-term exposure to high-decibel music and/or sound, the loss cannot be restored. Thus, prevention and protection are essential."

13. "A good warm-up prepares the muscles in your arms, fingers, face, and breathing apparatus for performance, and gives you the best chance to achieve your ideal tone."

14. "...the way I think of performance the same way as I think about my body. It is not just notes or musicality. How we take care of our bodies; PRIOR, DURING, and AFTER the performance has a huge impact."

15. "...practicing music faster than you can play it clearly isn’t doing you any favors."

16. "...performing is essential to teaching."

17. "...always look for the lesson in every situation and quietly store it away for future reference."

18. "Most importantly, practice your weaknesses not your strengths!"

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