To Perform Or Not To Perform, That Is The Question

This past weekend we had our first Community Concert for the 2017-2018 school year.  We had a decent turn out of students who wanted to play their Halloween pieces for the residents of a nursing home.  But we had a few students who were afraid to play and decided to skip the concert.  

I totally understand this impulse to not perform.  I’m afraid of making a mistake just like my students are but guess what?  I also performed at the concert!  I dusted off a Beethoven Sonata that I had learned when I was doing my grade 8 eons ago and played it.  Did I make mistakes?  Of course!  Did I let it show?  Nope. Did I have a good time?  Absolutely!    

So here are some of my best pitches for students who don’t think they either can perform or are too scared to try.

 

  1. There is nothing better than the immediate feedback from an audience- they will clap and make you feel amazing for all of the hard work you’ve put in!

  2. Everyone makes mistakes, the magic is to not let anyone know you’ve done it! And the audience doesn’t care if you made an error- they are more interested in the whole package - the song that YOU prepared to play!

  3. If you are afraid that everyone knows that you made a goof - think about how many people in the audience actually know your piece and even if there are a bunch who do, how many of THOSE people are playing the piece in your concert?

  4. When you practice at home no one but your family knows the pieces you are learning - if you play for others then a whole bunch of people get to hear you!

  5. Sharing your music is one of the ways you get to make someone else feel good! Check out the audience after you’ve played and you’ll see a lot of smiling faces!!