Performance prep escapades part 1

clockIt was late last night. I’d spent a whole day as a wage slave (yes, I have a proper job) and did a few hours teaching in the evening. After I had updated the files for my students in the students area part of my website it was after 9:30pm. I realised preparing for a performance was going to be harder than I thought. Time being my main issue! I realised that I had to do something, so I made a few small steps. The first being I decided what I was going to play.

I scanned all the books in my teaching studio. It’s a given that I’m not going to force my less than dulcet tones on anyone. The number of students who laugh at me when I sing is too embarrassing to mention. The amount of classical guitar repertoire books far outnumbers the general acoustic books. So classical guitar it is!

With time constraints and my nervous disposition consuming my thoughts, my next decision was to pick some pieces that aren’t too hard, around grade 5 and 6 (ABRSM). I went with Five Pictures of Sark by Vincent Lindsey-Clark. I have taught a couple of the pieces for exams, so they are familiar.

The pieces are:

  1. Maseline Harbour
  2. Havre Gosselin
  3. Cycles in the Avenue
  4. La Moinerie
  5. Descent from La Coupee
Pinched from the website above:
The magic of Sark inspired Vincent Lindsey-Clark on his honeymoon in 1991. Five scenes from around this enchanting island in the Channel Isles illuminate the contrasting locations.
A little bit of research goes a long way, so I created a YouTube playlist with the songs in to listen to. I’ve found all but the 5th song. As I listen to more performances, I will add more to the playlist.

It’s always a good idea to listen to different interpretations of the songs you are going to play. It also helps to watch other people play the pieces. I class this as practice. Supposedly, 20% of the brain cells you use when you are practicing a piece are used while you are watching it. I’ll take 20% over nothing if I don’t have my guitar to hand, or it’s too late in the day, or I’m too tired!

Hopefully, soon, I’ll find some time to actually pick up my guitar and play!

JGQ xx


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