Lessons for pros
As a professional, do you sometimes take a lesson or two?
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I have been told this does happen occasionally.
Young professional soloists whom I know do take regular lessons from very top teachers in the world. I don't know any professionals who have steady gigs (orchestra, teaching, chamber works, etc.) are taking lessons. Unless they are soloists, most of them are not always on top conditions if they were honest with you. They would have to put extra practice when it comes to audition or occasional recitals. Like Trevor said, they might get some feedback from other colleagues rather than going for lessons.
I know pros, especially young pros, that take regular or occasional lessons. The most common reason is audition prep. But there are also folks who finish their formal education, get a job (often in education), and feel like they still need to become better players.
Viola soloist Kim Kashkashian in mid-life at the height of her career took lessons for some time from György Kurtág. There was an article in The Strad, perhaps two years ago, in which she spoke about that experience.
When I was a young professional and still taking auditions, I took occasional lessons from the concertmaster of the closest major orchestra (several hours away). It was extremely helpful.
I'm perhaps a very experienced amateur. Lots of years but probably repeated most and say at intermediate level. I've been playing beside a pro for over a year and thinking about setting up a lesson. I want to tweek my tone. ( Which is better,A orB). Any tips for preparation and organizing?
Not an orchestra, more of an organized fiddle group. Down East Music plus older pop. I'm not shy about asking for help. A or B refers to "which sounds better, this bow hand motion or that etc." Sorry for the confusion.
Yes, many professional violinists also take lessons, especially advanced masterclasses, because they need self-elevation. I know Fabrizio Falasca (violinist of 1st violini and assistant leader of Philharmonia Orchestra London) has taken masterclasses from Kavakos in Athens and other places.
Somewhere around this level they no longer are "lessons" and become "coaching sessions."
Ditto; call them "coaching sessions" on almost ready solos, to get another opinion. Serious singers do more of this; you don't hear what the audience hears, and self-recording can be discouraging. I heard that Pavarotti worked with a coach throughout his career.
Scott, you omitted stalactites and stalagmites! As a former spelunker, my mnemonic for remembering which is which, is: one of them "holds on tight".