Posted by Paul Tseng, ICS Cello Chat Moderator on May 12, 1999 at 10:27:59:
So I came home from my day job (Network Adminstrator) and ran a few errands at home. After having dinner I finally get to my cello (around 8PM) and try practicing Prokofiev's Symphony Concert, which I'm performing next week. It goes fairly well, but I don't feel comfortable with my sound.
Later, I took a break and spoke with my wife a little, It was about 1045 PM and I was getting really tired. We talked about non music related matters and later on she pryaed for me that I could relax when practicing and performing.
So when I went back to practice, I ran through the entire piece non-stop (using a great recording to follow along with for tempo and such). I was so relaxed that by the end of nearly 40 minutes striaght of Prokofiev, I didn't feel the least bit of fatigue in my arms or shoulders or hands. In fact, all the difficult passages just went without a hitch! I was amazed. Furthermore, I was very happy with my sound.
Here is my theory. The secret to playing well techinically and sound wise is relaxation. It goes opposite to what comes naturally to humans; the more sound you need to produce, the more you need to just relax your body. I think that prayer helped too...When a person is spiritually in tune, the body can relax much more easily. This in turn leads to more productive playing.
I hope that I will be in the same state when the performance comes. So those of you who believe, defnitely pray before you perform. (Even if you don't believe, it couldn't hurt you to do this!)
Jusdt thought I'd share this with you!
ICS Cello Chat Moderator
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