Practicing Music: There Are No Foolproof Exercises

Musicians love to share advice in an attempt to help other musicians. (I’m no exception.) And it probably goes without saying that some of the advice is helpful, and some isn’t. One of the most common forms of advice that I often take issue with is when a musician blindly prescribes a particular exercise to another musician […]

Standing And Sitting To Play Music: Two Important Mechanical Principles

Practically without exception whenever I give a musician an Alexander Technique lesson, I witness habits of imbalance and tension in the acts of sitting and standing that sharply impact the musician’s coordination, comfort and sense of control and satisfaction. Because they are so deeply ingrained, the sensations of these habits fall below the kinesthetic “radar” […]

Practicing Music: Understanding The Difference Between Routine And Process

There is a topic that seems to be finding its way into the books and blogs of several well-respected musicians and music teachers these days. It is about the importance of paying attention to the quality of process as you practice your instrument. I’m pleased with this trend, and am in complete agreement with it. […]

Body Awareness And Music Making: Learning To Reinterpret Your Senses

One of the aims (and benefits) of studying the Alexander Technique is an improved sense of awareness. Without exception, my students gain measurable improvements, not only in their kinesthetic (body) awareness, but also, in their overall awareness through their other senses, as they play music. They learn to hear more vividly, perceive time more accurately, […]

You, Your Instrument, Space And Movement

There is a fundamental error that I see many musicians make when positioning their instruments in preparation to play. It usually begins seconds before the first note is produced. It might seem like a small thing, but it can have big consequences. What is it? It’s in how musicians bring their instruments to themselves to […]