Thursday, April 18, 2013

When does it matter?

When you make a mistake in a performance, you have to let it go.  It can’t matter because once you start thinking about how you messed up a second ago, you’re taking focus away from the moment you’re in NOW, which often leads to further mistakes, or at least a lapse in your presence.

However, having said that, it’s really easy to fall into the trap of thinking a mistake that you made during a performance doesn’t matter.

A lot of mistakes are easily written off by thinking the audience didn’t notice, or it didn’t mess up the song, etc.  While that may be the case, those kind of justifications focus more on the external – the audience, the song – instead of what you did or how you could do better next time.  Over time, those mistakes become “allowable” in your head.  They may very well be ok with your group, especially if you’re a more casual or community group.  But are they ok with you?  If so, why?

Imagine you’re in a group where mistakes are 100% tolerated, where no one is ever going to call you out on being off, or missing a cue, or playing the wrong section, whatever.  Will you let the group’s permissibility affect how much better you could be?  In other words, would you ever fix your mistakes without being called out on them?  I don’t know many players that would be okay with this, though I don’t know many groups that are THAT permissible, either.  Still, why not have the mindset to fix whatever mistakes you make, regardless of how your group treats them?

It's not easy to let a mistake slide "in the moment" but then be intolerant of it once the performance is over. It takes practice and thoughtfulness to be able to switch between the two in a good way.

"A mistake is only a mistake the first time.  The second time, it's a choice!"

No comments:

Post a Comment