By Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Last summer was 20 years since I've graduated from the National M.K. Ciurlionis School of Arts in Vilnius, Lithuania. This school year was the 10th year of my teaching at the same school. So, as you can imagine I know this school well enough and feel most comfortable in it. Nevertheless there is one room that makes me feel miserable - that's the little concert hall, where all my piano exams took place.
You may ask why is it? Because in that concert hall I had to play all music by heart. Sometimes I still have nightmares in my dreams that I'm performing and suddenly I forget what's coming up next... I'm sure, many musicians share the same or similar memories and have many stories to tell.
Now after many years of variuos musical practices I realized that the main problem of me having this horrible feeling about lost memory was that I wasn't well prepared. Of course, at that time I couldn't be honest with myself as I can be now.
I always started to memorize my music too late, so I never had enough time to live with it and to feel comfortable during the actual performance. Of course I was raised as a professional, so I would still play it pretty much well, but that would cost a lot of my nerve cells.
So if you have to perform from your memory, start to memorize well ahead of time. Be honest with yourself and hopefully you will avoid my nightmares.
You can fool your listeners but you can't fool yourself.
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Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
Don't have an organ at home?
Download paper manuals and pedals, print them out, cut the white spaces, tape the sheets together and you'll be ready to practice anywhere where is a desk and floor. Make sure you have a higher chair.