My recital wasn’t perfect.
This isn’t surprising. I haven’t counted exactly, but I had several thousand notes to play, and there are a lot of ways a note can come out wrong. It can be the wrong note, or out of tune, or not attacked cleanly, or left cleanly, or the wrong length, or not well blended with the notes on either side . . . and that’s not even getting into issues of phrasing and making compelling musical shapes. Playing a note correctly involves an intricate coordination of fingers, breath, and tiny muscles in the mouth, and a minor change in any of those can lead to failure.
So yeah, I made some mistakes. Some of them I noticed in real time as I was playing, and others I’m sure I’ll discover as I spend time with the recordings. In many ways, this is what classical training is: a relentless honing of one’s ability to ferret out mistakes and correct them. I’ve had a lot of that training, and I’d like to think I’m at least halfway decent at said ferreting out and fixing. I have a running list of areas for improvement in my playing, and I’m sure some of those will be reinforced by listening to this recital.
But I think it’s important to note that fixing everything on that list isn’t really a goal I have. It’s very easy to equate technical perfection with musical success, but I think that’s wrong. I don’t make music to show off my technical prowess. I make music to make people feel things.Read More