Thursday, January 13, 2011
Puddle Jumping-A Memory Metaphor
We are really close to ready for the upcoming festival and preliminary contest in the studio. Many students have just a small memory slip here and there, but sound quite musical. With 2 weeks before the competition, we are in relatively good shape and spirits.
Without thinking about what we were saying today, a student and I decided that those dang ole memory spots were like puddles. She kept wanting to back up in the piece and try to go through the muddy spot by going backward first. I suggested that she jump over the puddle and keep on going.
My concern with memory issues is the vicious cycle of getting stuck in the same spot and never getting out of the endless loop. I have been known to be on the musical highway from here to there, and taken the wrong exit, so to speak, and wound up in Poughkeepsie, rather than Atlanta. If I hadn't tried to go around the road block and make up my own offramp, I would have been on the right highway.
My friend, Miriam likes to embarrass me about the time in Pedagogy class when I was asked to play my Beethoven Sonata, Op. 2 movement I was working on.
I was not mentally prepared to play this one. I had been working really hard all week on my Debussy Reflections on the Water. So, somehow, in the middle of the Beethoven I took an off ramp, and got to the the middle of the Debussy anyway, without missing a beat, she claims.
I think I must have had some stumbling around; they're centuries apart, and not anything close to the style of each other. I don't really recall many of my pedagogy performances. What I do recall was what everyone else was performing. I still think of some of my colleagues in terms of what they were preparing musically.
I think if I had been a puddle jumper rather than an off-road 4-wheeling warrior, it would have served my better, but we'll never know. For now, I'll teach to hop over, and not try to go around the mud. And hopefully, ultimately, fix the puddle!