The Art of Practicing on Performance Today
How do professional musicians hone their chops? Performance Today is doing an occasional series called The Art of Practice where host Fred Child interviews musicians in their home studios to reveal their approach the unglamorous task of practicing. In a recent interview, pianist Simone Dinnerstein mentioned that, rather than doing repetitive scales or arpeggios, she takes segments that she finds challenging and makes little exercises out of them, trying to make it more difficult than it actually is so when played in the normal way it seems easier. Simone will depart from the standard musical phrasing in a number of different ways, including going so far as learning a piece backwards and forwards, so that knows where she is at every moment. This frees her up from thinking of the music solely in sequence and more as a grouping of landmarks or segments.
Other musicians interviewed include Manny Laureano, Jonathan Haas, Anthony McGill, Gil Shaham and Daniel Matsukawa. You can listen to all of the interviews on the Performance Today website. Good luck improving those practice habits!
Performance Todayy can be heard Monday through Friday, 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. on WCVE Public Radio (HD1).