Happy New Year! I hope you have had a wonderful holiday season, full of friends, family, good food and good times. As the holiday season ends, a new year begins, creating the perfect opportunity to talk about resolutions and goals for 2022!
Specifically, I'd like to talk about everyone's musical resolutions. Of course, you might have more than one goal in your musical life, but at this point in time, what is the nature of your primary goal for this year? Where would you like to see the most improvement, attention, and resolve? I've put together a list of general goals, and I'd love for you to pick the one that speaks most to you, and then describe your goals in more detail, in the comments.
Here's a little overview, some ideas to help you get the ball rolling:
Practice. There's always the obvious goal: Practice! Maybe you'd like to do a better job of carving out practice time and really making it happen. Maybe you'd like to up your hours. Or, maybe it's simply a matter of getting to it on a more consistent basis, even for just a little bit of time.
New Repertoire. Another idea is to explore new repertoire. This could mean exploring standard repertoire that you've never learned, or it could mean looking at new music, or lesser-known music by women or BIPOC composers. Or, you may want to explore a different genre than the one you usually play.
Technical Progress. Technical goals can also provide a lot of motivation: fixing your position, getting a good spiccato, mastering up-bow staccato, really getting the mechanics of the bow arm to work, etc. Are you inspired by the idea conquering a technical goal?
Updgrade Equipment.Upgrading equipment is also a worthy gaol. It takes some real effort and willpower to procure a violin that sounds good, or to find the bow that works for you. It requires research; contacting shops, luthiers or bowmakers; trying out the equipment; and then ultimately finding the means to acquire buy it. It can take some real planning!
Find Performing/Playing Opportunities. You also may simply want to find more playing or performing opportunities: to start playing in a group, to form a quartet or ensemble, to join a band, etc.
Listen More. Another thing that can happen when we play a lot is that get so busy with "output" that we forget to give ourselves "input." In other words, we stop listening to recordings, stop going to performances, stop enjoying the performances of other musicians. We neglect to observe, without playing. Do you feel like you need to put your instrument down and listen to more recordings? Go to more performances?
Please pick the answer that best describes the nature of your foremost goals for this year, and then describe your specific goals in the comments.
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