That spark

What is it about music?

During exams, it seems, errors are verboten.  So children are told to play “safely”.  This includes, slowly and carefully.

I now have the task of telling them to do the opposite for the concert.  Take risks!  Music is not a well-groomed poodle; it’s a man-eating lion!  We don’t want it tame (boring!), we want it wild.  If there are a couple of burrs in the mane of the lion, do you think that will bother the man who is being eaten?

Well, maybe not everyone feels like this.  But I’d rather listen to a wild performance that has errors and near-misses than a tame performance (whatsoever).  Playing “safely” is no guarantee for not making mistakes.  But it’s a guarantee that they will be noted and not forgiven.

Play slowly and correctly – when you practise.  Then practise some more.  And more. And then some.  When you don’t need to play slowly anymore to play correctly, pull out the stops, open the cage, watch your poodle transform into a lion.

Otherwise your performance is utterly forgettable.


Btw:  For your entertainment, the 5th instalment of “The Family Pool”:


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