It has been a while for me to continue my series on practicing! I have been having a bit of technical problems. So onward we go:
As I continue to struggle with managing to work on multiple pieces all at once, my practice technique continues to evolve. There are so many different ways to practice, and the technique that works for one person, is not always the best for another.
My current project: four pieces of music that fill one hour when played at tempo, from the four eras of music:
Baroque: Handel Sonata in G Major, 5 movements
Classical: Mercadante Concerto in D Major, 3 movements
Romantic: Gaubert Suite for Piano and Flute, 4 movements
Ferroud: Jade, the middle movement of Trois Pieces per Flute
If you count each movement as a piece, that’s 13 pieces to work on at once!
I have explored several different ways to cope with this mountain of work! And remember, I am not a professional flutist, so I have to fit my practice into everything else that life demands. I have tried several different tacks, and here’s the one that is working at the moment:
First I took a sheet of graph paper, wrote the movements across the top. Then I got colored felt pens for the 7 days of the week. I fill in a square each time I practice one of the movements. This way I can see that I am covering everything evenly.
Next I went through every piece, with metronome, and figured out at what tempo I could play through each piece, and how many minutes involved. Now for warm-up, I chose 10 minutes-worth and just play the music..no working, just a run-through. That way I can enjoy making music.
The next step is to select one movement, and WORK on it. I out the effort into fingerings, rhythm, dynamics, breathing .. whatever is needed. As I fill in the colored squares on my graph paper, I put a “W” for work, a dot for warm-up. Now I can see at a glance what I worked on the last time I practiced, and keep moving forward.