A Great Performance: Bill’s Story, continued

Four weeks after Bill’s artistic breakthrough, in which he had discovered the power of being receptive to the beauty of each musical sound, he came into his lesson saying that he’d had more breakthroughs. He said his hands had relaxed a lot, and that he was hearing...

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Playing From the Heart: Lee’s Story

This story describes how you can overcome stress and performance anxiety by tapping into the power of your heart. Lee arrived at his lesson last week after a full day’s work at his office. He took a few minutes to settle down and warm up a bit. But as he started...

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Belonging on the Stage: Laura’s Story, continued

This story shows how personal bravery overcomes performance anxiety and uplifts an audience.  After Laura‘s amazing breakthrough last week, she joined the workshop again this week, performing a major work from her program in the concert hall she would be playing in...

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Confident Performing: Laura’s Story

This story shows how a musician can turn performance anxiety into performance power, using a combination of great piano technique, strong mental focus, and above all, a deep belief in themselves. Laura is preparing for a recital in a few days. She had come to the Art...

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Bill’s Story: An Artistic Breakthrough

This story shows how our primary gift as musicians—our intense receptivity to musical sound—can increase musical expressiveness and improve physical coordination. Bill had been working hard for a long time to release tension in his hands, arms, and shoulders. He video...

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Sandra’s Story: A Piano Technique Breakthrough

This story describes how a musician can acquire one of the fundamental elements she needs for confident performance: A reliable instrumental technique. Sandra’s previous teacher had given her pieces that were way beyond what her technique could handle. She showed up...

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When We Hide Things

When I was six or seven, my mother started giving me more toast than I wanted at breakfast every day. Because I didn’t know how to tell her that I didn’t want all of it, every morning I threw one piece of toast behind the refrigerator. I felt so clever and gleeful...

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Unlocking the Energy in Musical Transitions

I had a tough time transitioning back to New York City after teaching the Art of Practicing Institute’s summer program this year. I’d spent the week on the spacious, green campus of Edinboro University, with its peaceful lake in the middle inhabited by geese and...

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The Power of Being Ordinary

by Tracy Stuchbery A performing experience I had recently as a choral conductor has led me down a path of pondering the ordinary. Strangely enough, the performance itself was, in a word, extraordinary. I have never felt more alive, more in command, more connected to...

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Nora Krohn on Self-Love

Dear readers, This wonderful article by Nora Krohn was first published here on January 25, 2016. Her amazing heart and mind come through with fresh impact today, and I am honored to republish it. I hope you enjoy it! Madeline Bruser On Self Love By Nora Krohn A few...

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