For me, creating fuel the consuming of the end product – baking, face cream and music. All piano schools remind me of the musical The Music Man. Every school sells equipment then teach you to play the equipment. What’s the desire behind the urge to play an instrument? Does consumption of music or instruments, or the recreation of the music makes one musical?
My curiosity in piano is revived mainly because I discovered piano transcriptions online. As I mulled over, should I do it, should I not, a poetry reading by Jane Hirshfield reminded me of the gold of a good practice. She’s a zen Buddhist and talks about the practice of meditation. It led me to thinking that I should reset my mind. I managed to finish Grade 7 exams when I was 14. As I worked towards Grade 8, I quit piano. It was a relief. Piano was horrible and boring. I wasn’t even frustrated with progress. I don’t recall enjoying learning any of the pieces. I was a child and I had decided classical music was boring. I disliked finger exercises most. I did well in Bach (which I felt, was purely technique) and the impressionists (I could make it sound like atmosphere sometimes). I think I didn’t like it because I didn’t feel connected to the music. I felt like I was typing very well. I never felt successful in it. There was not a time in which I felt I executed a phrase well. Piano practice was a mental scar. It should not be. The sustained practice, the journey, of something is the real gold. The outcome of the practice could be a good or bad product for that moment. That outcome is momentary and will be re-shaped as long as there is continual good practice. It sounds cheesy and shallow – it’s not. The cheesy and shallow is just my writing skills.