It is useful to think of the music we learn as gifts. Sometimes they are gifts from bygone times, like music from 1820; sometimes they are from living composers. Our mothers taught us to be gracious when receiving presents because it engenders gratitude, which in turn helps the gift cycle continue. Even if we bought the sheet music, the content is mysterious. I like to think of music coming from a from different realm, a magical time and place. It is as if we open the special window to infinity and the work comes in.girona garden
Last week I gave workshops at Classical Guitarfest West every morning from 9–10 am. These were labeled as warm-up and technique but I chose to work on concentration.
When we work on pieces repeatedly they improve to a point and then our mind begins to wander. We think of groceries that must be picked up for dinner, projects that are due, any number of things but not about the music we are playing. This is a normal thing because after a certain degree of competency we no longer have to think about a task. Our progress stalls when we no longer attend to details.