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Ruth Kuefler

Thoughts to Remember . . .

July 15, 2007 at 11:59 PM

Well, before I wrap up my little bits of nostalgia about my favorite musical place on earth, I can't resist sharing my favorite quotes from Sound Encounters. Some are universal, others about specific technique; some serious, others funny; but I think they all have something important to say.

Quotes from great teachers:

"The greatests musicians are those with the fastest ear." - Brian Lewis
"The secret to good shifting is timing, not speed." - Harold Robinson
"Our job as musicians is to fill the space around us with sound" - Brian Lewis
"Spiccato is legato that is off the string." - Brian Lewis
"What separates great artists is what they find in the music." - Dorothy Delay, via Brian Lewis
"Bow speed is destiny!" - Jeffrey Irvine
"Don't hold the bow, balance it." - Richard Aaron
"Virtuosity is not about speed." - Brian Lewis
"Practice feeling, not reflexes. Reflexes are the first thing to go when we are nervous." - Richard Aaron
"The difference between good musicians and great musicians is this: good musicians practice until they get it right; great musicians practice until they can't get it wrong." - Amy Barston
"Shift from position to position, not finger to finger or note to note." - Donald McInnes
"Artistry is measured by the number of notes one cares about." - Paul Kantor

Other little bits of wisdom I have picked up randomly while at SE:

"Whatever you can do or dream you can do, begin it; boldness has genius, power and magic in it." - Goethe
"Our life is what our thoughts make it." - Marcus Aurelius
Enthusiasm comes from a Greek word meaning "inspired by the gods."
"Confidence comes not from always being right, but not fearing to be wrong." - Peter McIntyre
Einstein's definition of insanity: doing the exact same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

And finally, in a category all its own, Bargisms, : ) i.e., favorite sayings from one of the most special conductors and mentors I've ever known, David Barg. Just for fun we thanked Mr. Barg this year by giving him a t-shirt with a list of our Top Ten Bargisms on the back. I never got a picture of the actual shirt, but here's what it looked like:


Here are some more that didn't make the cut:

"Life begins outside the comfort zone."
"It's the little notes that are important"
"A rest is never a rest. A rest is the release of a note."
"Practice makes permanent."
"Fake it till you make it"
"Don't attack the note—attack the phrase."
"Play it like you mean it"
"Model the behavior you want in others."

From Sydney Menees
Posted on July 16, 2007 at 4:15 AM
You know, collecting quotes is a great hobby! I really liked all of these.
From Terez Mertes
Posted on July 16, 2007 at 4:27 AM
Great stuff here!
From Laurie Niles
Posted on July 16, 2007 at 4:33 AM
Collecting quotes from live people is also called "journalism"...maybe a journalism class or two for your electives at college?...This goes on the front page, again, Ruth!
From Albert Justice
Posted on July 16, 2007 at 6:25 AM
I liked them all but found this inspiring and powerfully true I think:
"Practice feeling, not reflexes. Reflexes are the first thing to go when we are nervous." - Richard Aaron
From Ruth Kuefler
Posted on July 16, 2007 at 6:42 PM
Thanks everyone. Quote collecting is actually a secret hobby of mine . . . or not so secret now. Oh, and thanks for the hint Laurie — who knows, maybe I will. Haha, you aren't trying to recruit me or something are you? :)

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