Effective Steps to Learning New Music

I recently read this great advice from well-known Clarinet performer and professor, Mitch Estrin. One of the best ways to keep yourself active as a musician is to learn new music. How you learn that new music will either hurt or help your skills. If there is no system or focus to your practice, you will teach yourself bad habits and slowly deconstruct your playing and technique. These tips on focused preparation will help you stay on track toward mastering some new skills and new music!

The 10 stages of musical preparation: 

1. Listening to the piece (live or recorded performances, if any) 

2. Initial reading

3. Planning musical intentions 

4. Creating a practice strategy

5. Macro practicing; learning sections at a time

6. Micro practicing; identifying and practicing more challenging measures and phrases

7. Score study (unless unaccompanied) 

8. Connecting multiple sections

9. Run throughs 

10. Simulating performances

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