I confess I have been struggling a bit….losing sight of a rare opportunity to experience the joy of playing with an orchestra in favour of worrying about doing a “good (enough ) job”
In two days I will have the immense pleasure of being rehearsal pianist for Beethoven’s 5th piano concerto, and I am glum with the gnawing suspicion I may not be up to it.
My thumb joints are sore, I have had to omit several big stretches, the fast passages feel clumsy etc etc etc.
Not the joy and vigour that would have me thrilled to share with Beethoven or anyone else for that matter.
So I have stopped practising ( my attitude is less than helpful) had a couple of glasses of wine and penned a pleading letter to Mr. B to ask for his assistance. I was drinking wine the last time he wrote back, I seem to remember!
This is what he has advised.
To my dear Mrs. quick
I cannot believe how shocked I am to see you abandon me in this way just to get a few more notes out…just to get your speed up. Just to be clever. Just to be in time.
What on earth has happened to you?
You are being scared that is what…scared and self centred, self Conscious.
You have shut me out for sure.
Here I am at your shoulder, at your knees, at your feet and you don’t even know I’m here!!!
You can start by listening to me. Turn your attention to me. To me!
What am I saying in this concerto?
I am saying this is the force of nature and life, bursting out and showering us all with its exuberance and ecstasy.
Don’t hold back. You need to let rip….let fly. Let roar
Then the tender moments will make sense.
Yes yes that’s it….
Stop fretting about the notes, play the music, woman….play and relish the moments with me and anyone with the sense to open their hearts.
Aren’t you supposed to be enjoying yourself?
I will be there, jogging your arm…..just play the music. You know how to do that. Anyone can get up and be clever and …..boring. Go and grab some hearts….make them twist with feeling….let them be on the edge of their seats.
One more thing. Please enjoy yourself.
Well then. Simple, isn’t it?