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The Mammoth in the Practice Room: 7 reasons why musicians fall short of their potential

Guest post by Stephen Marquiss “We’ll see you on TV one day”, they said. By the time I reached my 29th birthday, I had been on TV once – but does a school promotional appearance really count? I could’ve made it twice, for the semi-final of BBC Young Musicians. But I withdrew through injury. I’m… Continue reading The Mammoth in the Practice Room: 7 reasons why musicians fall short of their potential

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Play what you play best

The key is trying to limit yourself to perform only the pieces that will be best for you and the audience. Otherwise, you’re doing everyone—yourself, the composer, and the audience, a huge disservice. – Richard Goode, concert pianist I’m sure most performers would agree with Richard Goode’s statement, yet many, especially younger artists, are under… Continue reading Play what you play best

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Never too late

"I wish I'd kept up my piano lessons!" How many people do you meet who express this regret, that they'd continued childhood piano lessons into adulthood? At my piano club, there are people who have played all their life; others who, like me, gave up, often in childhood or their teens, only to return to… Continue reading Never too late

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An entry-level compact digital piano to help you learn and love music

Digital pianos offer musicians, professional or amateur, regardless of their ability level, a user-friendly, versatile instrument on which to practice and perform, and perhaps their greatest asset is that these instruments have a volume control and headphone jack, enabling the player to practice without disturbing others, at any time of the day or night. This… Continue reading An entry-level compact digital piano to help you learn and love music

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Mindfulness in Music: Notes on finding life’s rhythm

Guest post by Mark Tanner I wonder how often we pause to consider the importance music plays in our everyday lives. What would we miss most about music if it were no longer there? It’s not just non-musicians who run the risk of taking music for granted – exponents of music, and professional players perhaps… Continue reading Mindfulness in Music: Notes on finding life’s rhythm

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Joanna and the Piano – Gavin Thomson

Written in the present tense with all the breathless stream of consciousness of a bright, excitable 10 year old girl, Joanna and the Piano is part time-travelling fantasy, part comment on modern family life. When her father is made redundant, Joanna is forced to leave the city home and friends she loves to start a… Continue reading Joanna and the Piano – Gavin Thomson

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Inspiration for pianists at Jackdaws

Tucked away in a tranquil leafy corner of Great Elm, a small village near Frome in Somerset, is Jackdaws Music Education Trust. Now in its 25th year, Jackdaws was established by the singer Maureen Lehane in memory of her husband, the composer Peter Wishart, and took its name from his most-performed song, 'The Jackdaw'. Their… Continue reading Inspiration for pianists at Jackdaws