2022 our 25th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments.
Over 100,000 members from around the world.
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Pianoteq
Steinway Spiro Layering
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Wessell Nickel & Gross
PianoForAll
Who's Online Now
76 members (AJB, antune, 0day, Bill McKaig,RPT, BMKE, 17 invisible), 656 guests, and 317 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 95
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 95
I have found more and more that I become increasingly "sweaty palmed" as I realise that the pianist is struggling with a particular performance. It usually happens when the concert includes some of my favorite but difficult pieces eg Liszt B Minor Sonata, but it can happen with much "easier" programs. I think I can generalize that I can relax with pianists at the top of their profession.

I have to qualify these concerns with my personal experiences. Throughout my childhood I was lucky enough to see my Dad perform many times, he was a talented amateur who would often wake me practicing early in the morning (ahh...bliss). As a nine year old I remember telling him after he performed Chopin Concerto No.1 that I had heard 17 mistakes! He replied that he was pleased that I'd only noticed that many.

I think I was already becoming a nervous watcher (waiting the 4 minutes before the piano comes in in that concerto is still a real thrill). So I was always a bit tense watching my Dad and it's difficult not to lose some of those reflexes.

I don't want to give the wrong impression, I love going to piano concerts. I just think I need to go more often and learn to relax a little more. Also since I've returned to the piano in the last few years I can't help imagining in some parallel universe it's me on the stage, now that's a terrifying thought.

I'd love to hear any of your thoughts/experiences.

Chris

Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 6,299
6000 Post Club Member
Online Content
6000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 6,299
I only get nervous if the pianist is an amateur. I tend to be just the opposite of professionals or aspiring professionals, meaning I find myself being hypercritical.


Best regards,

Deborah
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 5,921
5000 Post Club Member
Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 5,921
That's called sympathy. I got very sweaty and asthmatic watching an acquaintance wrestling with what I suspected was a very balky poorly prepped piano. He played spendidly under the circumstances but had a very wild look in his eye by the time he finished and confirmed what I'd suspected about the piano.


Slow down and do it right.
[Linked Image]
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 389
I
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
I
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 389
Seconding what Frycek said, I think anyone who's ever had a nerve wracking recital where they've blundered thru a piece has an empathetic response to seeing someone else going thru the same thing.

Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 46
E
Es Offline
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
E
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 46
if a pianist is struggling or has a memory lapse, i get ultra-nervous because i'm afraid the same things will happen to me.

Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
P
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
P
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Oh Yes! I get sympathy nerves. And my palms sweat.


Adult Amateur Pianist

My only domestic quality is that I live in a house.
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,390
M
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
M
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,390
I think it's natural to get nervous, especially for a fellow musician in the audience. I just try to enjoy what I can and appreciate what they are able to do well.


private piano/voice teacher FT

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 753
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 753
especially when it is my student


Music is the surest path to excellence

Jeremy BA, ARCT, RMT
Pianoexcellence Tuning and Repairs
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 10,856
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 10,856
I understand the phenomenon well but shouldn't we be focusing on the positive aspects of a performance? If you are nervous your students will pick up on it.

Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 802
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 802
If it is an amateur, I could feel a bit embarrassed for him but if he is the first one to take it with a smile I would be relaxed too.

If it was a professional pinaist, I'd be very embarrassed for him, but understanding that nobody is perfect.

Some time ago at a concert in the Royal Festival Hall the first violin went with his bow against one of the sitting violinists; had to stop; silence in the auditorium; after a while they started again and all went well, at the end of the performance the first violin went out again and played a solo piece as a way of apology.

**** happens.


"The man that hath no music in himself / Nor is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds / Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils." (W.Shakespeare)

Kemble Conservatoire 335025 Walnut Satin
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,907
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,907
Quote
in the Royal Festival Hall the first violin went with his bow against one of the sitting violinists...
This first violin was a consumate diplomat and he committed no error. As he is concertmaster, all other violins must follow his bowing, even if it is wrong. He adjusted for his stand partner who was not capable of adjusting, and then he took the blame in order to not show up the error of the others.

Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 310
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 310
I got the most nervous when my 7 year old daughter played her first recital!


Frank III
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 4,714
L
4000 Post Club Member
Offline
4000 Post Club Member
L
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 4,714
I have always been astounded that concert pianists can play from memory all the pieces that they do. What is it about their brains that can absorb (if that is the right word) all those thousands and thousands of notes and call them up at a nanosecond in time and put them into action? confused

I know the hours of practice that this takes, but still.....?

I have heard many mistakes, especially from Rubinstein, but the sheer majesty of his performance overshadowed them. I think we must think of a performance as a "whole," and not the sum of its parts. It is only then that we can appreciate what they have accomplished. thumb

And yes, my heart has gone out to those amateurs who have sufferred from brain freeze. I feel both sympathy and empathy for them but also a bit of pride that they had the desire to get up upon that stage in the first place.

But that is also the reason why I have given up on trying to memorize anything. After playing a piece a thousand times or more, the muscle memory does help, but I can't rely on it or on my ever-decreasing brain cells.

I have nothing but deep respect for those who do perform and could never make a critical remark about their performances, for I have to believe that they did their very best at that particular moment.

However, I have heard some interpretations of Chopin's music by some of the so-called "greats" in the field, and I believe that they were either trying to break a speed record or just refusing to play attention to the dynamics of the music, as written by the composer. I hold little, if any, respect for them...and quite frankly, feel like wringing their necks. mad

Kathleen


Chopin’s music is all I need to look into my soul.
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 561
A
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
A
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 561
I am afraid that I often get edgy even when even advanced pianists perform difficult repertoire. At the end I'm almost applauding out of relief that it's over than admiration. I think it's because I put myself in their position.


It don't mean a ting if it don't have dat swing
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 753
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 753
Quote
Originally posted by keyboardklutz:
I understand the phenomenon well but shouldn't we be focusing on the positive aspects of a performance? If you are nervous your students will pick up on it.
It's not like I'm sitting there dry mouthed and shaking...it's the same thing as when you get your test results back. There is a bit of anticipation in the air. If anything it creates energy in the air.

I judge myself by the way my students play, plain and simple. My recitals are like my tests.


Music is the surest path to excellence

Jeremy BA, ARCT, RMT
Pianoexcellence Tuning and Repairs
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,485
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,485
I've seen Kissin perform twice, and both times I was quite nervous for him in the first half of the program.

Last year I had the great opportunity to see Valentina Lisitsa perform in a very intimate setting (about 25 people in the audience.) I was a nervous wreck! Everytime her tempo slowed I thought "Oh no is she having a memory lapse!?"

I really don't think pianists of that calibre need my sympathy, but it's a natural reaction for people you admire. Conversely, when I see an amateur or unfamiliar professional perform, I don't get nervous for them.


Currently working on:
-Poulenc Trois pièces
-Liszt Harmonies du Soir
-Bach/Brahms Chaconne for Left Hand
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 9,232
W
wr Offline
9000 Post Club Member
Offline
9000 Post Club Member
W
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 9,232
Yes. I empathize WAY too much with other musicians when they perform, and if it feels like something is going wrong, I just suffer, probably more than they do.

Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 147
Oh my, I feel like a cold-hearted fiend. Rather than feel sorry or nervous, I am comforted with the knowledge that even the pros can make mistakes. This is only true for live performances, though.
I have no sympathy for CD recordings, however. I've heard some awful recordings, and there really is no excuse for that.

Joined: May 2007
Posts: 10,856
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 10,856
Quote


I judge myself by the way my students play, plain and simple. My recitals are like my tests.
I don't (plain and simple).

Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 753
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 753
Quote
Originally posted by keyboardklutz:
Quote
[b]

I judge myself by the way my students play, plain and simple. My recitals are like my tests.
I don't (plain and simple). [/b]
Since we are both being "plain and simple" KBK my friend; can you tell me what you do judge your utility by?

Love of music in students?
A sense of value with their purchase?
Lots of referrals from students?
People who play for a lifetime or go on to become professional musicians?
Students who become consumers of quality music
The amount of energy and effort that you put into each student
the sense of rapport and community created with each student?
By having none or only a small percentage of students drop out?

Tell me what you judge your performance as a teacher by. You very often say "I don't do that" or "that doesn't work", but statements like these don't have a lot of worth to us as a community if a viable alternative is not presented.

Please tell me that you teach your students what to do instead of only what not to do!!

There are millions of teachers who take the "don't do that" easy road because it does not require specificity. From your other posts, you do not strike me as one of "them".


Music is the surest path to excellence

Jeremy BA, ARCT, RMT
Pianoexcellence Tuning and Repairs

Moderated by  Brendan, Kreisler 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
Piano Buyer - Read the Articles, Explore the website
(ad)
PianoDisc

PianoDisc
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
(ad)
Mason & Hamlin Pianos
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Schimmel Fortissimo 8, how much does it weigh?
by Pianokjop - 08/13/22 12:17 PM
Is a CPT necessary?
by Petoskeyguy - 08/13/22 11:07 AM
Yamaha clp 785 horrible chorus effect
by Chrisgilx - 08/13/22 10:51 AM
How are you learning?
by bennevis - 08/13/22 09:41 AM
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
What's Hot!!
FREE June Newsletter is Here!
--------------------
Forums RULES, Terms of Service & HELP
(updated 06/06/2022)
-------------------
Music Store Going Out of Business Sale!
---------------------
Mr. PianoWorld's Original Composition
---------------------
Sell Your Piano on our world famous Piano Forums!
---------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Forum Statistics
Forums43
Topics214,377
Posts3,215,997
Members106,078
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers

Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | MapleStreetMusicShop.com - Our store in Cornish Maine


© copyright 1997 - 2022 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5