The Joy of Practice: Part 3 - Space & Time

In this installment of “The Practice of Practice”, I will address the quality of your practice “space” and a clear approach to time management (vis-à-vis goal deadlines) that should maximize your effectiveness and enjoyment. Space: When I was a freshman student at Eastman School of Music, a generous and kind Doctoral student shared some wisdom with me about attaining success in my academic life. This student emphasized the importance of securing all the materials and resources connected to a particular class (text book, class notes, recordings, sharpened pencil, pen, etc.). Although most of this comes across as obvious, I have been amazed over the years at how many of my own students embark

The Joy of Practice: Part 2 - Goals & Strategies

In part I of "The Practice of Practice”, I presented the importance of the relationship between your “teacher self” and “student self” and how great teachers model effective means of identifying issues and addressing ways toward improvement (with precision, compassion and patience). In part II, I’d like to discuss goals and strategies. It may sound funny, but in order to get the most out of any practice session, it is a really good idea to have a clearly defined goal or set of goals. “To become a great drummer” is not a clearly defined practice goal. It is a reasonable large goal, although it is a bit vague and subjective. Until you have determined your goal, you cannot formulate a strategy.

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