April 16, 2011 at 3:07 AM
After working on Vieuxtemp's Elegie for several months I had the entire piece memorized, shifts, bowings, dynamics, and even those little non-musical notations that I made over the course of studying the piece. I worked out most of the issues in the first three pages, but hit a wall when it came to the last page of the piece: a non-stop series of 16th note runs all over the fingerboard across each and every string.
I worked that section note by note for months starting at the slowest tempo imaginable and then kicking it up a notch on the metronome week over week. That is until I hit a tempo wall. There came a point in time where my left and right hand lost all coordination and I stumbled all over myself in that last page. Rhythmic exercises didn't help. I decided to put the piece aside for awhile and begin working on something completely new with a totally different set of challenges.
After a few weeks off from Vieuxtemps, I played through it again for giggles a few days ago. To my delight, my fingers untangled themselves and I regained the coordination that I had lost. My tempo barrier was magically broken.
Sometimes it is a simple matter of over-practice that a short break will solve.
that is so true! you just have to let your self and your brain to let it soak for a while, and then there it is..right underneath your fingers.
very well said Mendy!
Percolation as a practice tool!
I had also been slaving over a fast 16th passage in one of my summer workshop pieces. After getting sidetracked by other stuff I came back to it yesterday and it did seem to be a little better. Here's hoping!
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